Procrastination is the silent killer of dreams, if you were to look at 95% of the population of normal every day people, you will find a few things in common but the one that will come up most would be procrastination. To ask someone if they procrastinate they will most surely tell you that they do not, and in their minds they are right. The human mind has a very efficient process of justifying our actions and keeping them from being labelled as unwanted characteristics. I know this because I have gone the majority of my life being a very efficient (proficient) procrastinator. Even when told that I was procrastinating too much, I would fail to see it as such. I have come to learn, on my own time and terms, that I truly was procrastinating too much, and the reason that most of my dreams hadn't been fulfilled yet was because of this.
It was only recently that I came to this realization, but when it hit me, it truly made a difference. I think it had about as much impact mentally as getting hit in the groin with a softball does physically. It was definitely an eye opener and I set about to change it immediately. Surprisingly it really didn't take much work at all to fix. What it came down to was a set of three little words that were given to me by my father in the context of me being a procrastinator. Those words just so happen to be a popular slogan for a prominent shoe company as well. Those words are 'Just Do It'. At the time they were told to me they made sense, but they didn't really 'click' if you will.
I think that a person cannot be forced into changing who they are, or what their habits are. We as humans need to come to our own conclusions, we need to learn from our experiences and mistakes and come to the realization that what we are doing may not be the best thing for us. We cannot change unless we want to change, so as a teacher, parent or someone who gives counsel one must understand this, and allow their pupils to learn on their own terms. Provide them first with the knowledge of HOW to learn, then give them the experience and the opportunities to learn from their mistakes, and you will be setting your pupils on the path to become truly successful people. So as a pupil, live your life and learn from your mistakes, if you are reading this article then you have figured out that something is wrong and you need to change it. I congratulate you because you have taken the first step towards a more rewarding and fulfilling life.
I have found that in doing almost anything, the first step is always the hardest and it is the same when dealing with procrastination. Being intelligent people our brains are always able to find something else to do, or something else that is EASIER to do. But if we just take that first step and start work on whatever it is your procrastinating you will find that it becomes easier with every second you are doing it. so whatever it is, just START and you may find that, whatever it was that was holding you back is nothing but an intelligent design of your mind.
Sometimes this isn't enough, there are cases where even if we start work on something it is like there is a force field or some sort of wall that stops all thought processes from going close to the task at hand. There are two things that I have found help to get past these force fields and walls. (no, they are not lasers and battering rams) They are DESIRE and PERSISTENCE. If you have no "buy in" or desire to do the project you have to do, then your mind will naturally not want you to do it. You have to come up with some way of making this task the most important thing in your life at this point in time. You have to find the desire to achieve success in this task. Find the logic that makes this task truly that important, and make sure you believe the logic. Be PERSISTENT in getting the job done, just do it, and stick with it. Whenever you find your mind wandering, take a moment to remember that DESIRE, remember why this task is the most important thing for you to be doing, and persist in doing it. With time you will be doing these things without thinking and you will not be able to believe just how much you can accomplish in a fraction of the amount of time it would have taken you before.
Defeating Procrastination takes time and effort, the very idea of a quick fix to procrastination is laughable. All humans are made with the capacity to procrastinate, it is in our natures, so we must work hard at changing our habits to procrastinate. I know that I have not defeated my procrastinating tendencies, in fact, believe it or not just this morning I caught myself procrastinating the writing of this article. Looking back I find it pretty hilarious, because I sat down to start writing it, but got right back up, went downstairs and started doing the dishes. Now, this WAS a productive outlet, but it was still procrastinating what I knew I had to do. It wasn't until half way through the dishes that I realized the irony of what I had just done, but being one who does not like to quit, I finished up the rest of the dishes and forced myself to come back upstairs and just get started. Once I had the first sentence finished I was in the right frame of mind and I have thoroughly enjoyed the rest of the time spent working on this article. I hope that what I have said here can help you on your path to defeating the procrastination that lives within you, and if you ever forget what you must do, just look down to the pair of shoes you are wearing, and there is a good chance that they will remind you of those three little important words.
This is an original article written by BullishD for InfoBarrel.com, it was published on December 22, 2010.