I always tell my clients, “You are more than your to-do list!” So many of us measure the quality of our days with some imaginary productivity yard stick. A good day is one when the moon, planets and stars align and we’re super productive. A bad day is one when we’re not taking care of what we intended to take care of, and we haven’t crossed nearly enough off some proverbial to-do list. But the truth is, that the rest of the world often judges us that way, too.
And this “productivity=value” perspective can be tough on us over time. For so many of us, life is a constant battle to get stuff done when it needs to be done. It’s not because we’re flaky, lazy or idle by nature (usually quite the opposite!). It’s not because we intend to procrastinate and be unreliable. It’s not because we are selfish, are trying to self-sabotage, or are trying to irritate others around us in some passive-aggressive way.
We don’t want to create chaos and stress for ourselves and those around us. We don’t want to let other people (or ourselves) down, yet again. It’s not intentional. Procrastination doesn’t fill some deep, dark subconscious need. Our procrastination isn’t an indication of our weak moral character or our lack of caring. Most of the time, we have the best of intentions. But even with the best of intentions, we still struggle, and the cycle of procrastination, stress, guilt and shame continues.
So why is it so hard for us to get done what we need to get done, when we need to do it? Why do we struggle so with procrastination? We all put things off from time to time, delaying things that are less important to take care of other priorities or do other activities. Occasional procrastination is pretty commonplace, and it doesn’t cause a big problem for most people.
But when procrastination becomes a pattern or cycle, it can impact every area of our lives, affecting our personal and professional well-being, and all of our relationships. We may be perceived as flaky, unreliable, undependable, and even selfish! Our last minute rushes and flurries of chaos create a lot of stress and strain for us, but also for those around us. It damages our reputation, our relationships, and causes us to miss opportunities for advancement and growth.
Perhaps the biggest harm of procrastination is what it does to us, internally. When procrastination becomes a pattern, we stop trusting ourselves, and we stop believing in ourselves, our abilities, and in our potential. And . . .
How can you reach your potential if, deep down, you really don’t believe that you can?
This struggle with Procrastination is very real, and very painful. It’s the #1 complaint of individuals who come to my coaching practice for help, after complaints of unmet potential. Most new clients don’t realize how much those two complaints really are one and the same!
Don’t let your struggle with procrastination define you to yourself or to others. A good place to start is by exploring what your Procrastination is costing you. You just may be surprised!
You really can Push Past Procrastination, once and for all! The sense of peace and fulfillment you get when you do is so much greater than the work it takes to get there! It’s true that you are more than your to-do list, but it sure does feel good to be able to master it once and for all!