I’ve often asked myself why high-functioning professional men and women become paralyzed by indecision. Why they’re procrastinating? Why do you procrastinate?
First let me say that procrastination (like many other coping mechanisms) has earned a really bad rap. The three primary, legitimate, and often unexplored reasons we procrastinate are:
You may ask yourself, “Why am I procrastinating?” “Why do I suddenly slam on the brakes and tie myself up in a knot? Why do I suddenly stop making decisions, producing results, and feeling good about myself?”
The reality is that you may not be stalling or placing your life on hold for the reasons you think.
Maybe you’re not procrastinating.
Think for a moment about the demands on your life right now; Think about how many people are piling things onto your already overflowing plate. Your manager, peers, mentees, significant other, children, parents, and volunteer organizations all want something from you.
Everyone has expectations of your super human powers, don’t they?
Now add your ‘shoulds’ to that list… what your mother told you should be doing, or society or your spiritual leader … It’s amazing that you don’t permanently crash under this never-diminishing, always-increasing load. Oh you did crash, you say? Well, you are NOT ALONE!!
If we don’t know what’s most important to us then too many things, on a continuum of relevance, gather on our plate demanding our attention. We don’t know which things to let go of and which to relentlessly pursue.
We literally stall (which, of course, looks curiously like procrastination) because we haven’t prioritized our life, our values, or ourselves.
When we clog our mind with absurd expectations we can’t meet, we experience failure. Subsequently, we convince ourselves we’re procrastinating losers.
But that’s a lie!
Most of us are juggling an impossible number of things . When we’re overloaded with decisions we stop doing the things we love, put off decisions, and delay projects. We cannot handle one more thing. And since we’re too swamped to work through it, we shift into neutral and stay there until we somehow manage to untangle ourselves, or someone kicks us in the butt.
- Procrastination is avoiding something that needs to be done.
- Prioritizing is figuring out what is most important to you and doing things in that order.
When you’re procrastinating you fail to put your foot on the gas. When you fail to prioritize, you have one foot on the gas and the other on the brake.
Are you paralyzed by procrastinating… or have you failed to prioritize your life?
- Could you use some help figuring out your priorities?
- How can you turn your priorities into a strategy for your work and your life?
- Do you know what you want to do but you somehow never get it done?
Most people need some accountability in order to successfully reach their goals- would that make a difference in your reaching YOUR GOALS?