Pushing Past Procrastination Confessions of a reformed procrastinator
It's a New Year! I know last year was rough but this is the time to hit the ground running, right? So why is it so hard to move on all of those grand ideas? Could you be a undercover procrastinator? Procrastination is the action of delaying or postponing something. In essence it's allowing yourself to stall the process of whatever it is that you know you should be doing. Most people will say that procrastinators are lazy, or that they have bad work ethic but I know the truth. There are plenty of procrastinators who have big ideas and would love to see those ideas blossom into reality however something is holding them back. Yes, there are actual reasons why people procrastinate and they can actually train themselves to stop. How do I know this? Because I am my own case study! I am an avid procrastinator, or at least I was. Today, I am a work in progress. So now that I have confessed my secret let's dig into why we really procrastinate and how do we fix this problem within ourselves.
People procrastinate for many different reasons, but the most widely assumed reason is that they just don't want to do it, however, this is an oversimplification Think about all of those things that we want to do, but we never get them done. You know those goals that we want to accomplish but for some reason we keep putting it off. Why is that? This is because most procrastination doesn't steam from a lack of interest, the root of it comes from deep inside of us. The key is to figure out your root cause, today we will focus on mine, a lack of confidence. These emotions will stop us dead in our tracks every time, regardless of how much we truly want to accomplish our goal.
A lack of confidence is a silent but effective killer of most dreams. When we don't believe in ourselves we will come up with every excuse in the book not to try. We will fill our minds with negative thoughts that will make us lose focus on the fact that we can do anything through Christ. Our dreams and visions are tied to our purpose which means that we have what it takes to be successful. You know that you are supposed to start that business but you constantly remind yourself that you don't have the degree or the training that others in your field have. You tell yourself that no one will want your products or that the career you want is over saturated with more qualified individuals so you should just stick with something safe. If you keep allowing yourself to stay in this negative mindset you will never take the steps needed to walk into your purpose.
We have all heard that FEAR is False Evidence Appearing Real, but the mind is a very powerful tool and if you focus on these things you will manifest these negative outcomes. You will either remain stagnant, unable to even try to reach your goals or you will try and fail. But your failure will not be because you are not worthy or capable, it will be because you allowed yourself to fall into negative thinking. These negative thoughts will cause you to stall and procrastinate on every step that you take. I will use myself for an example. Many of you know that I am an author, but what you don't know is that I have been writing since I was a child. I have always love to write, but I never thought it was good enough for others to read. I will never forget the first story I shared. I was a graduate student reading my story to a group of kindergartners and the librarian heard me. She pulled me to the side and told me that I need to turn that story into a book. I smiled and thanked her, but every time I thought about doing it I got overwhelmed. I couldn't figure out where to start, how to make this happened and eventually I just put it back in the box with my other stories and walked away from it. Do you know why I felt overwhelmed? It was because my mind was at war with my spirit. You see when your spirit is telling you to follow your dreams and to fulfill your purpose you start getting visions of the blue print, but when your mind is caught up with negative thinking you can't accept that blue print as reality. You shut down every "thought of grandeur" as if it's unrealistic.
This constant back and forth between what your spirit and mind is saying will cause you to become overwhelmed and eventually feel defeated. There is a scripture that states the Spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. Some believers allow this scripture to be their cop out for sinning, but I challenge you to look at it the same way I do. If your flesh is weak then build it up. This leads me back to the topic at hand; how to stop procrastinating. Now that we have become real with ourselves and acknowledge that our procrastination is probably steaming from a lack of confidence in our own ability to succeed there is only one thing that we can do. We have to change the way we see ourselves. We have to allow ourselves to accept the vision that God has given us for our lives. Once I did that it allowed me to free myself from a lot of those negative thoughts in my head. It allowed me to feel comfortable sharing my stories with the world. I became excited about the tasks that I had to complete. Don't get me wrong this is not an overnight process. It takes time and effort to get to a place where you choose the light. Even now, I find myself sometimes having negative thoughts creep into my mind about a new project that I am working on. But now, I have the power to push past it because I know what it is. So now it's your turn. Acknowledge that those thoughts are just negative thinking steaming from a lack of confidence in yourself. Once you do that you can counter it with positive affirming thoughts. Be your own cheerleader! The more confidence you have in yourself the easier it will be not to procrastinate on the steps needed to achieve your goals. Trust me, after all I am a reformed procrastinator.