In essence, procrastination is the act of postponing or doing something. It leaves us feeling like we have something hanging over our heads most of the time that we just didn’t get to. We have a list of things we were going to do, but most often, move some of those items over to a new list at the end of the day, week, or perhaps month. But what if…it is our intuitive guidance system and we are trying to override it by feeling like we have to get things done right now?
You are scrolling through the feed, and something catches your eye. You feel like you have read it before or you were meant to read it right then, but then you wonder if it is meant to distract you from your true purpose, so you try to get back on track yet again with what you were doing.
Maybe looking up inspirational quotes will help you stay inspired, and one catches your eye.
If you spend too much time thinking about a thing, you’ll never get it done. ~ Bruce Lee
Is procrastination really your intuition guiding you like Bruce Lee seems to be using his chi as guidance? Do you believe that a force of energy can actually guide you? Have you ever had that feeling that maybe, just maybe, someone or something is watching out for you? Then read more.
Signs that Procrastination is Actually Your Intuition Guiding You:
- Warning! Do you get a sense that perhaps you shouldn’t start a project right away or give someone an answer they are waiting for? Cue visions of the little old lady/witch handing Snow White the poisoned apple. Maybe someone is really just trying to pass off their toxic items to you, hmm?
- The pause feels like it should be there. In this day and age of shortening up tasks, speech and dial times << remember that? Cue horrible screeching sound as you waited to connect. The pause gave you a second to register what might be going on. That pause gave you a moment to breathe, think, connect to your thoughts and oftentimes, it sent cues to your 5 senses. But what about your 6th sense? If you pick up on what is not said, but felt, subtle cues in energy shifts, and reasons for the pause, don’t ignore that. The pause is connecting the dots for you.
- You get a sense that you really should say no. I will never forget the week-long “pause” I gave my daughter when she kept asking me to go to a friend’s house and spend the night. I didn’t have any reason whatsoever to say no, but it felt like I should. I even said to her, I don’t know why, but it feels like I shouldn’t let you go. Weirdly enough, we had a talk about something I saw in my feed that was bad that week. Still, at the last moment, I caved. Since I am not Cher and can’t turn back time, it still feels like slow motion as I got the call from the girl’s mother. I was ALMOST FREAKING THERE. My daughter had been in a bicycle accident. Guess what we had talked about before going? The thing in my feed that was bad. It was a bicycle accident. I floored it, turned into the neighborhood, and slammed on brakes and ran up to the house. My daughter was covered in blood and I couldn’t tell where she was hurt. Her shoes, the ones I never let her ride a bike with here at home, were broken as they were sandals. I won’t describe her toes or her knee, but a demon took over as I said to the other mom was she at least wearing a helmet? When I found out no, I went a little crazy and scooped her up and flew down the road to the emergency center. Went a little crazy is probably an understatement to be honest, but there was so much blood that I blamed myself. So, after hours of things I won’t share here, she was patched up, her foot is okay now, and to this day she has a massive pile of scar tissue on her knee to remind her, and me as well, don’t press mom when she says no.
- There are signs if you know where to look. I have never doubted the signs I was given that week, and have never given in again if something I can’t explain tells me to say no, or go this way, or not take that road, or watch my step here, etc. The signs might be things like a pause, a weird feeling overcoming you like premonition, a desire to move away from someone, weird dreams that seem to be warnings, a tingling or prickling in between your eyebrows or even the hairs on the back of your neck. Your Facebook feed feels odd, like you are seeing all the bad stories around this one thing (should have listened to this one). Yes, I know it is weird, spooky, etc. if this is new to you, but it’s better to be safe than as sorry as I was. Trust me on this one. I am very glad it wasn’t worse because the signs I was seeing were around a concussion on a bike that week, and we had literally had the talk about what proper bicycle wear was and my daughter assured me she knew better.
So if all of that doesn’t feel like why you are procrastinating, then go ahead and get things done.
Here are a few posts you might like if you really just put things off:
Want more help around your highly sensitive emotions? We would love to have you in our Club. <<< Linked to more information about what we are learning.
I know that at the end of each year, millions of people resolve to do better next year. The problem is, resolve means steadfastness, and we let many things get in the way of that resolve. Procrastination has become our safety net, trust me I know.
But what if we traded in that safety net, for true results? What would happen?
We’d actually get things done. We’d stop listening to fear and self-doubt. We’d have to be accountable. Ack. Those things by themselves are scary. Scary feet. Scary feet. Scary feet. <<< Sully would approve of you being scared.
Unfortunately, if you are reading this, we have hit the grown up stage and the responsibilities that come with that are often too much for us in our heads, so we fall back on fear. I understand. I have been there many times. So what changed for me?
3 tips to overcome procrastination:
- Create clearly defined goals…and then look to see if you can break them down even further. In my new online community, I was talking about how to really get clear on what you want and then step back and see if it can be even more clear. After we have created these crystal clear steps to your end result, make sure you know how realistic they are. For example, one goal might be making more money. Okay, so how much? If you are on the path to millions, is that realistic right this very minute? Maybe you can have a goal to make $100 more this pay period. At the end of the year, you can have your big goal of making x amount of dollars. Try not to write out that your goal is to get to the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.
- Minimize the path to distractions…engage in community support. As I was on the path to wellness, the community around me was not very supportive. I had to change my focus as many of you have heard me say time and time again. It actually became my most popular quote and my tag line, but I truly believe “Surround yourself with what you want to become.” << Okay, my original quote was a bit longer, but of course, I will put it at the end for you. But let’s think about your distractions. Write them out if you have to. Map out your pitfalls like you are Indiana Freaking Jones and this is the Temple of Doom. Write out snakes, those might be the people trying to bring you down. “Why’d it have to be snakes?” And then the booby traps, that might be the triple chocolate cake your friend ordered right in front of you. The nerve. Then what is going to save you from the pit? Who or what is your rope vine that comes right as you need it? Support. Find that group of people who will be there for you.
- Get to a safe environment…whew. After you have made it out of distraction zone, what are you going to do next? Sticky notes. I didn’t invent them though, but I use them. So here are a few ways to help yourself with notes. Get your planner ready and write in what you need to do. Clean your desk area into one that is organized and less “Pig Pen” like. Physically remove old to-do lists. Streamline your tasks into today and by the end of today. Don’t look at the overall month right now…that can be your future log. Make certain you are holding yourself accountable or use the S.O.S. option if you are in my closed group. <<< that’s where you get to ask me for help on 1 specific thing before Thursday of each week. It might show up as a blog post. You never know:)
I really believe in you! If I can do this, I know you can. See the previous article called You Can Get Through This, because life is not a race. It’s a journey, and we are all trying to get through it the best we know how.
Here is your reminder, from me. With much love:
If you are anything like me, there is more to do on your “to-do” list than you could possibly get done. That’s okay. I will move things to the next day and then it’s fine. Because surely by tomorrow I can get all this done, right? Wrong. Because tomorrow, I won’t get it done, so I will move it to the next day’s list:) That’s the art of procrastinating. I give myself a big window of time to get things done.
To be honest, the delay does not actually make me happy. In fact, when I can check things off my list, I feel pretty good! Putting things off can threaten my dreams and goals and actually make me feel pretty bad about my time-management skills. Some of the things I might do in order to avoid doing something on my list is look at social media, check my e-mail, or decide to start doing something that pops into my head right this moment instead of writing (I did not just finish researching something I might want to write about in the future…when I could have been writing this article).
Do you avoid doing things, make excuses, or are you truly not able to fit it all in? The reasons we might create sound really, really good! Even in business. I don’t feel like keeping this scheduled appointment because of x,y,z. I need the perfect time to do this. I am not sure this is the right time. Many many people do this even in their wellness goals! I can’t possibly start a new way of eating right now because I have a vacation, birthday, grandma’s visit, etc. Fill it in with your reason you are putting off eating right:) Yes, I have done all this too.
5 Tips to Start Doing Things (and stop avoiding things):
- Make a list of all the things that were on your to-do list from yesterday…or perhaps this week. Maybe even this month. Now, after that is finished number them in importance. Take the top three, and see if you can enlist in help to accomplish them. Could your kids, spouse, friend help or are these things you have to do alone? Decide if you can delegate, but don’t delegate if it’s not going to get done. Ask for help with a chunk of the item. For example, say it’s too much laundry. Could your children just fold theirs? Yes. Then get started!
- Visualize the task actually getting done and how you will feel. I do lots of this, I know. I do this because the brain undergoes a type of change called neuroplasticity, and while I am not a doctor or scientist, I find brain research really amazing. In the field of wellness, it has changed my life and the lives of many others who use this technique. I use this in the yoga classes I teach, my journal therapy, and my online course 4 Weeks to Wellness. Belief changes brain chemistry and brings about immune, hormonal, and physiological changes throughout the body, so believe you can accomplish your task.
- Give yourself a time-out or consequence if you don’t finish your task by the date you picked. If you prefer positive reinforcement, you can do that instead. If I clean the whole house before the kids come home, I can take a long bath in peace and quiet. If I don’t clean the house before the kids come home, I am going to be stressed out, and that doesn’t help the situation. It could be something like, I am going to remove the social media app X because I know it distracts me. I know lots of people who do this one. One girl who runs a business removed her entire personal account off social media…and only gets on through her husbands. I am not suggesting that, but some people know where the distractions are. You probably know too:)
- Declare your goals in a small group! You have to find the right group though…not a competitive one, or one where everybody says oh it’s okay. Just put it off until you feel ready. We are all looking for that assurance that we can put everything off until tomorrow Scarlett. Accountability partners are great to help you with not wasting time.
- WRITE it out on sticky notes, on a list, on the fridge, in your phone, etc. Have it visible and fresh in your mind what you need to get done each day. If it helps you, make monthly goals at the start of each month, then weekly. Then daily. I know this is crazy, but I actually do this. For the month of July, my goals are ____. I write them in my journal. On my planner I have weekly goals. On the day I have daily goals. I love to check things off!
Remember, this ties in with my Manifesting Journal Tips.
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Sigh. I have been putting some ideas together for November, but none of them “feel” right. If you are wondering what that word is up top, it stands for National Novel Writing Month. I actually have several ideas, and one that I was working on, but it doesn’t feel like it wants to be written yet. One idea for a children’s book came out of the blue, so it might be the next thing I develop. A painful yet ignored idea for a story came through as well one day, and I started a poem of sorts just so I could get it written down. To be honest, I have some ideas almost everyday; however, if they don’t feel like they are right, I ignore them. That part could be the procrastination setting in, but it really doesn’t feel like the right time to tell that story…yet.
Why I procrastinate:
- I feel overwhelmed by the task at hand. I have an awesome idea in my head, but it requires massive amounts of research, so I push it to the back of the line.
- Apparently perfectionists are known to do this because they think if they don’t have the skills or resources to do it perfectly, they will just wait. I didn’t think that was me, but now I do.
- I believe the muse needs to speak to me. Ha.
- I am afraid of making the wrong choice, and getting that rejection letter in the mail.
What can I do to change the above:
- Make my own goals. Find one place to send a query letter to a week.
- Keep a to-do list. I did that. Ermmm, and was doing a good job with it, and then decided it was annoying me. Just sitting there, waiting to be crossed off.
- Schedule things…well, if it doesn’t strike me as urgent, and that means I really don’t have a deadline, it goes to the back of my imaginary project line.
- I need to break the project up into smaller tasks…get one clean copy ready to go.
- Reward myself with a nap when done. Seriously. I need one just thinking about getting half of this done.
10 years ago, you had a plan. Maybe it was more like 15 years ago, but you’ve lost count now. As each year progressed, you said this is the year I do that thing. I don’t know what that thing is that you want to do mind you, but I know you had a plan for it. You saved for it. And then life happened…so you started saving again. You were so busy paying for life that one year rolled into, and so on and so forth until you realized you had put it off for 10 or even 15 years. This is the year I stop putting it off and start doing it. Why? Because I saw the most depressingly sad movie the other night and I realized that at any moment life is going to pass me by and that thing I want to do is still going to be my big dream. One Day you too might wake up like Dexter and Emma and realize you still haven’t really accomplished what you set out to do.
So, now that we are all depressed, let’s fix this thing. Ireland. That is my “thing”. I have wanted to go there for 15 years now. I have the passport paperwork all filled out and haven’t made time to go get them yet. Why? Well, I had two beautiful girls 18 months apart, and then life got crazy and the last time I looked I realized the anniversary my husband and I were going to go had ummm passed. Now I have twin puppies and vet bills and more life; however, there will NEVER be a perfect time. Ever. If I am going to say what needs to be said in life then I want to start living the way I want to live. Do I have the money saved for this trip? Nope. One step at a time. Passport is first.
If this sounds like you, whatever it is that you have postponed, hesitated, deferred, suspended, or just plain given up on, please dust it back off and start back on your plan to achieve it. Write it in the middle of a piece of paper and hang it on your bathroom mirror. Pinterest it, whatever. Just don’t forget it is there. If all else fails, sigh, there is an App for that. Seriously. The first one is the best looking to me because I can share my goal with over 3 million people, follow on Twitter, and log-in with Facebook. Easy. Here is the link by itself. I even like the motto “Changing your life is hard. Doing it by yourself is harder.” Say it with me now. Come on. We can do this “thing”. On that note, I need to create a new Pinterest board, so find me there if you want.
“People often say that motivation doesn’t last. Well, neither does bathing – that’s why we recommend it daily.” ~Zig Ziglar