- Someday Lesson: Procrastination controls us only when we choose to let it do so.
In the cult of productivity, procrastination tops the list of deadly sins – it’s the Satan of the getting things done world. We search for hacks to avoid putting off tasks, we beat ourselves up for not getting it all done now, and we talk incessantly about just doing it.
We raise procrastination up to the level of insurmountable barrier so that it becomes more of a character flaw than anything we have control over. Just as many people turn their goals into unachievable visions by putting them up on pedestals and worshipping them, an equal number of people (or more!) put procrastination up on a negative pillar and quake under the weight of its gaze.
It’s time to knock procrastination off its life-stalling pillar and take away it’s power to hold us back from achieving our dreams. We can all break the hold procrastination has over us and get on with actually living and doing with three simple steps.
1. Choose something you like to do
This sounds simple, and yet how many people do you know (including yourself) who have a list of tasks an arm long of things they “have to” do? Yes, we don’t have to like everything we do, but if you get up in the morning and dread your day, what kind of life are you living? Really, you’re not living at all. You’re just existing.
Want to bounce out of bed every day? Find something you love to do and pursue the crap out of it. Life’s too short to hate getting up in the morning.
2. Start with something small
Do you worship your goals? Do you create plans and visualize the perfect outcome? Do you gold-plate your dreams then set them up on marble pedestals? If you do, then you probably also sacrifice any significant actions that take you closer to the dream. Don’t worship your goals – simply act on them.
And the easiest way is to start with something small. Right now ask yourself what one thing you could do to take you one micro-step closer to your dream. Don’t think about anything else. And then when you’ve completed that, ask yourself “what next?”
And step by step your dream will become a reality instead of remaining an object of worship.
3. Let yourself be afraid
Fear of failure keeps us from moving forward, but fear of stagnating pushes us from behind. We therefore are trapped between two fears. We all live in fear – it’s hardwired into our bodies.
Therefore, why not embrace your fears? Accept them and use them. Fear failure? Then consider not moving forward the biggest kind of failure in existence as a way to motivate yourself out of your rut. Fear rejection? Then think of the disappointment others and yourself will feel if you never act on your dreams.
Most of us believe that fear is bad and that we should beat, destroy or sneak our way around fear. I say look fear directly in the eye and use its messages to achieve what you want out of life.
Procrastination isn’t a deadly sin and if you do procrastinate you’re not a bad person. But if you want to achieve your dreams, you don’t want to live waiting to get around to things.