We all procrastinate. About big things and small things.
It could be leaving dirty dishes in the sink, not cleaning the bathroom, not doing a work assignment or answering your emails.
On the other hand you could be procrastinating about much bigger things such as not following your dream of being signed by a record label and going on tour with a band. Why? Because you believe that what you want is WAY above your pay grade…you’re no one special and who the heck is ever going to even give you an audition? Well… they’re certainly not if you don’t do anything about it.
Are you procrastinating about applying for that new job because you don’t think you would actually be up to it? Because it might be too much for you to take on, and you would just embarrass self and end up having to leave? By which time someone else would have your old job, and you would end up unemployed?
Are you procrastinating about asking for a raise in salary, even though you know you deserve it, because of the fear of rejection, so you’re scared to ask? And what if the answer is no, what do you do then? Stay in your dead end job…or look for another one, which may be hard to find? And of course a new job would mean change and may be having to move location!
Are you procrastinating about leaving your unhappy relationship? Or not getting fit so you can achieve your goal of running the marathon?
The list, as we all know, is endless…
WHY DO WE PROCRASTINATE?
We procrastinate on the small things because they don’t give us that ‘feel good’ feeling…they’re not things we love doing! If they were we’d already have done them! We tend to leave them and go off and do things that we’d rather do, things that give us more pleasure instead.
Imagine a line graph with spikes and dips. When you do something that makes you feel good the line spikes – you’re on an energetic high. When you do something that doesn’t make you feel good, or if you’re sad or grumpy, the line dips in a downward spike. And when you do something that just feels dull, or boring, or something you feel you have to do, the graph flatlines, in a straight-line. That’s the procrastination line! Things like washing dishes, ironing, cleaning, answering emails are things that make up daily life, but they’re fairly dull and routine.
However not doing those things creates a drag on your energy because you know you haven’t done them… and if your house is cluttered because you haven’t done them, that creates more chaotic energy around you and can impact on your productivity and how good you feel, how calm you feel and on your general well being. Hmmm!
You procrastinate on the bigger things because of the reasons I mentioned above: because you don’t think you’re good enough; you don’t want to fail, be criticised or judged. The things you put off the longest tend to be the things that would cause most disruption or change in your life – the scary things. But these are also the things that bring the greatest freedom and results if you can just bring yourself to do them.
For example, I remember that when I finally decided to leave my relationship of 20 years, it was very scary and very stressful. It had literally taken me years (of procrastinating and telling myself my life was actually ok when it wasn’t) to pluck up the courage to do so … but the liberating feeling I had afterwards was like nothing I have ever experienced. It was an incredible feeling not just of freedom, but of pride, in myself, for having had the strength to do that thing I had wanted to do for so long. Yes I have sailed the Atlantic Ocean and climbed Everest, the highest mountain on the planet, which of course was incredibly challenging, but leaving my husband was in many ways the most challenging thing I have ever done. And I wished I had done it many years before. Instead of procrastinating… That experience taught me a lesson. Don’t procrastinate. Do that thing!
Often you are scared to do that thing you really want to do because you’re scared of success. Because if you are successful then the whole landscape of your life would change and then what? Think of the turmoil that would cause! And you don’t think you could cope with all that change, so maybe you’ll do it next year instead. In the meantime you’ll just stay small and safe where you are and put your dream back on the shelf to be wished upon as you blow out the candles on your birthday cake, as you have done every year for as long as you can remember.
HOW TO STOP PROCRASTINATING!
When it comes to doing the big things I want to do in my life, I no longer pussy foot around. I’ve learnt my lesson well! I now decide what I want and then I go and get it because I know how. I know the process involved in manifesting goals and dreams and the steps necessary to get there, because I’ve done it many times. I learnt it from my Everest experience. And I don’t hold back, I just go for it and trust it will work out, because I know it will change my life in a really amazing way.
However sometimes I definitely do procrastinate with small things…and accountability makes a huge difference in getting things done.
I gave myself a great example of this today. About a month ago I painted my bathroom. It was a big job because it has a very high ceiling and it took me several days. The day I finished I was really tired and decided that I would leave the washing of the paint brush and roller until the next day. In the meantime I put them in a plastic bag because that stops the paint hardening (a tip I got from a professional painter if you need one lol!). Anyway ‘the next day’ became ‘next week’ and then ‘next month’…! Because washing the messy paint brushes meant putting on my overalls as it was a messy job and I had much more important things to do like work, not to mention other more pleasurable activities!
However today I realised there was no way I could write a blog about procrastination if I was procrastinating myself! So this afternoon I went and cleaned all the brushes up and of course it felt good to have done it. So I just want to say thank you to everyone reading this for holding me accountable!
Accountability is what gets things done! Which is why, if you want to change something in your life or achieve a dream or goal, it’s so good to work with a coach because when you are accountable you get it done. If you don’t you get your ass kicked!
The lesson honestly is, that if you want to actually DO the big things in your life that are holding you back; the things you’ve been dreaming about; the things that are pulling you down, and are a drag on your energy because you know we should do them but aren’t, you will do them if you are held accountable by someone. Someone who is constantly asking you if you’ve done what you’ve said you’d do. And who can hold your hand when the going gets tough.
When I left my husband I had someone on my side doing that for me and it made all the difference. I’m not sure I would have done it otherwise.
So don’t let procrastination hold you back from living your dreams, don’t stay small. You are much more than that. Much stronger, much bigger, much more powerful. Your dreams are there to be lived. And I am not joking when I say that girl power is real!
P.S. GIRL POWER!
If you don’t know where to start…If you don’t know how you could possibly do that thing you really want to do… let me help you… it’s my job as a coach, mentor and guide…. Book a free call with me and let’s talk about how to get you on that road to your dream and kick procrastination into the dust!
P.P.S. DARE TO DREAM!
If you have a dream that you haven’t yet fulfilled, and are looking for the courage to do so then come and join my Dare to Dream Facebook group! It’s where all the action takes place! It’s a private group where I regularly post videos with coaching tips, give away free intuitive readings and support awesome girls who are daring to dream and moving towards those dreams. I’d love to see you there!