Wednesday, 7 January 2015
Anti-Procrastination...Or...Taking Myself By the Scruff of the Neck
I seem to have developed a little procrastination problem. This isn't my usual MO. I am normally an incredibly organised, planned, goal-oriented and perhaps even driven kind of gal. I get stuff done. I get it done before it's due as an insulator from added and unnecessary stress when life takes an unexpected turn and everything falls apart. Or your friends invite you to do something super fun with them at the last minute. I determined early in life I would not be the person who said "no" to being with my people because the ironing needed to be done. OK, so I don't iron anything, but you know what I mean!
Since the middle of November, when I completed my teaching rounds, my desk has been a bomb site. I have looked at it for no less than seven weeks and thought "I need to deal with that pig sty". The fact that it is the first thing people see when I open the front door has contributed to the layers of guilt that go with having left that hot mess to multiply and grow. Today I took myself in hand and dealt with it.
It took me all of a whole five minutes to toss the rubbish and return all the stuff to all the places. Really. Five minutes. Now instead of feeling guilty I'm feeling a little bit dumb. I spent seven weeks looking at that stuff thinking it was too much to deal with. Rather than getting on with it I had to deal with the emotions involved when procrastination happens.
And that's the thing with procrastination, isn't it? We put stuff off because we think it will be too hard, too time consuming, too overwhelming or we won't have time to do it perfectly. When we finally get around to doing the whatever-it-is-we-are-putting-off we discover it was none of those things and we had made it all bigger in our heads than it ever needed to be. We rob ourselves of joy and contentment and we live paralysed by guilt and unworthiness. I don't know about you but I don't want my life to be defined like that!
With that in mind I'm off to re-write my selection criteria responses for non-graduate positions. Because although this job will take some time, it won't take as long as leaving it and feeling guilty that I haven't done it yet.
Maybe once that is done I will be able to deal with cleaning the windows, mopping the floor and getting that Christmas tree out of my living room. I know it's only 7 January, but it's driving me insane!