It’s mid-August already and we have reached the end of Part 1 of my re-publication of my series on Preventing Procrastination, Prizing Prioritizing, and Pursuing Purpose. I thought it might be a good idea to provide a brief summary of the posts on Part 1: Preventing Procrastination, with links to the posts, if any of you would like to review those posts – or read them for the first time.
Here are the titles and links to all the posts on procrastination, along with brief excerpts from each. Please do review, or read them for the first time, in preparation for moving onto Part 2: Prizing Prioritizing.
Procrastination, Priorities, and Purpose – Part 1: Defining Procrastination
So what do you think of when you hear the word procrastination? Courtesy of the Free Online Dictionary, the definition of procrastination is “To put off doing something, especially out of habitual carelessness or laziness” and “To postpone or delay needlessly.”
Preventing Procrastination: Removing the Barriers and Lack of Self-Control
Procrastination tends to be the enemy of precision, of establishing a schedule with specific tasks at designated times and on set days–not “someday” or”whenever.”
On the subject of procrastination indicating a lack of self-control, to paraphrase one of Joyce Meyer’s quotes, it takes self-control to DO as well as NOT to do something. It’s our choice about whether or not to acknowledge and confront those areas of our lives where we lack in self-control.
Preventing Procrastination: Pulling Down the Stronghold
Allowing a stronghold to remain in our lives is a risky situation that can hold us back from fulfilling our purpose. Under normal circumstances, a stronghold–or a fortress–is a good thing, because it is set up as protection from attack.
However, mental strongholds, as the name implies, represent strong holds or influences over us that create a mindset that resists change. They become deeply ingrained or embedded in our minds due to frequent negative repetition. Once they have latched on, they are very difficult to break down and remove, much like a fortress wall.
Preventing Procrastination: Contemplating the Dangers
…some of the dangers we expose ourselves to when we procrastinate. I’m not necessarily talking about how neglecting or delaying doing something can be bad for our health or place us in the path of danger, although those are worth consideration. I’m referring to things less obvious.
For instance, consider how we feel–the anxiety, fear, and other negative feelings, all of which may lead to physical illness if the situation goes on for too long–such as in the following scenarios:
*An unfinished task seems to assume a life of its own and grow larger than it actually is, until we feel overwhelmed.
*A task or obligation we continue to neglect or put off, stirs up fear and anxiety disproportionate to the actual task or obligation.
*Doubt and uncertainty result in no clear plan of action, so little to nothing gets done.
Preventing Procrastination: Be Willing to Finish What You Start
For today, the focus is on this rather uncomfortable thought:
Procrastination is being unwilling to finish what you start. Ouch!
It makes me experience a strange combination of feelings, including anger, defensiveness, frustration, and guilt. Am I really *unwilling* to finish what I start?
Preventing Procrastination: Inability to Fulfill Your Potential
The word potential (thanks, online dictionary) means “capable of being, but not yet in existence” or “capable of development into actuality.” So the gifts, strengths, and plans we have are capable of existing, but we need to actively develop them into actuality.
When we procrastinate or put off taking the steps necessary to exercise a gift, develop a strength, or implement a plan, we are unable to fulfill the potential inherent in any of those things.
Preventing Procrastination: Exploring How Procrastination Interferes with Potential
Remember, the word potential means “capable of being but not yet in existence” or “capable of development into actuality.”
Here’s another explanation or example to help grasp the concept of potential:
“Potential cannot manifest without form. Like concrete, it must have something to be poured in to, something to give it shape and make it useful. –Joyce Meyer
If we procrastinate and delay taking a first step, or any step along the way, we likewise impede our forward progress toward reaching and fulfilling our potential.
So what about you?
Have you been following this series so far?
Have the posts been helpful for you and are you making changes in your life?