I’m sure I have talked about being a procrastinator here before. I am really good at it. Sadly. Hiding out in bed, pulling the covers up over you, none of that makes things go away. However, I have been trying really hard lately to reform my ways.
Really, really hard.
This does not mean I have overcome my procrastination, it just means I am trying and finally noticing the benefits of taking on tasks and needs as they come instead of worrying like a crazy woman and putting them off…
and off and off and off and off again.
I thought I would share a few of the things that are helping me with all of this…
- It feels good!
As bad as some things are to deal with, when you actually do deal with them it feels good to know that you put on your big girl (or guy) panties and started dealing with it.
- It is not as bad as you think!
A big part of my procrastination usually comes from the fact that I am a bit (understand of the year) a worry wart about things. What I am learning is that generally once I start tackling a problem that it really is not nearly as bad as I thought it would be.
- The clock slows down
I wish it would stop sometimes, but that is not reality. However, when you start working on a problem that has been there that you have tried to ignore for so long the clock does kind of slow down in taking care of things at least. It seems more manageable at the very least.
- You gain perspective
Many of the things that I procrastinate about have required that I talked to a professional or someone “in the know” about the subject. Doing this has really given me a much better perspective on the problem and makes it, again, more manageable.
- Set specific tasks to complete
Rather than just say, “I’m going to take care of X tomorrow”, instead set a specific task to get you started. That might just be a phone call, looking up something online, putting something in the mail, making an appointment, etc. Baby steps are those specific tasks. Once you accomplish one of them then make sure to set the next specific task on your to do list or calendar and keep the momentum going.
- Support is nice
Rather than just worrying in your own mind about things, once you talk to someone who specializes in whatever area you need you have support! These people are going to be on your team to help you take care of the problem and walk you through the process. You still have to do the work, but at least someone is there with you.
- Ask opinions – a little
Once you do start tackling something don’t be afraid to ask people that you know and trust their opinion about the subject. They can give you a fresh perspective. A word of caution though, not every problem should be discussed on places like Facebook because you will get a huge variety of answers – some good, but many bad – about the situation.
- Celebrate your victories
Once you have finished something, rather it is a baby step in a process or the whole big thing, take the time to celebrate that victory. Be proud of yourself! Let others be proud of you too!
Today was actually a good example of me taking care of a lot of things that normally I would procrastinate about. I took care of step one of getting COBRA insurance, I signed up for the new benefits that will start in September, I went to the bank, I made an appointment with my oral surgeon, I called my dentist to follow up with a question I had from last Friday, and even a few other little things. These may seem small, but for me to take care of so many personal things on one day is really great and I am very proud of myself.
Hubby and I text each other quite often during the day too. I can tell you that Hubby much prefers getting texts from me saying I took care of this, and that, and this rather than a text that I am worrying or afraid of tackling something. He may still have work related stress but I know he is relieved to see me doing all of those things. He also knows that he is my number one cheerleader and is able to say “good job Robyn” often!
Again, this is still hard work, but it is becoming manageable.
The more that I tackle things the easier it is becoming. I am able to use the tools that I have learned in therapy to help me along the way as well. Plus, I am replacing those negative thoughts and actions with positive ones.
Why am I sharing this?
The same reason that I always share. One is because it is helpful for me to get it all out. Two is because I hope that some of the words I say can connect with at least one of my readers and help them with similar problems and to not feel like they are the only one in the world. And three – well I like to talk LOL and you, the wonderful person reading this, are a great listener!
Are you a procrastinator or have you overcome it? What advice would you give to me or anyone else reading this?