Today I want to talk about Procrastination

Why do we procrastinate?  Our thoughts get consumed by things that we constantly worry about and obsess over.  These thoughts fall into 3 categories: ones we control, ones we indirectly control and ones we don’t control.   

Steps to deal with Procrastination:

  1.  Do a brain dump of all the items swirling around that are causing you stress and things that you need to do. To dig deeper ask yourself “I feel overwhelmed right now because……”, now add these additional items on the list.
  1. Next step, highlight the items that you know you control, IE: customers you need to call, Employees you need to talk to – these are the things you do control that you are not doing.
  2. Now put a line through all the items that you have INDIRECT CONTROL over.

For example – you hire an employee and they quite within the week.  You can’t control this. 

  1.  Now the items that are left, these are the NO CONTROL items, things that happen that you could not have done anything about. For example:  you paint a room for a customer, they picked out the color and in the end, they really didn’t like it.  This you had no control over but now you have an unhappy customer. 
  2. Now draw 2 columns on a piece of paper:  first column list all the items you have direct control over and the items you have indirect control over, in the 2nd column list all the items you have NO Control over. It will be surprising how few items you have on the ‘I can control this list’
  3. Now make a plan to do the items you can do something about, usually you only have about 6 items on this list which is very manageable.  

If you insist on thinking about the things that you cannot control, I want you to observe the time you are wasting thinking about these things and just understand this is wasted time that is taking productive time away from you and make a choice to stop doing it.  It can be that simple if you don’t convince yourself you have to think about them. 

Because we focus on the things that we cannot control and then that overflows into procrastinating everything including the things that we do control, all of a sudden, we are in complete overwhelm because we are circling the drain of what we are not doing, of what we cannot control and feel frozen to take the next step forward to break the procrastination circle.  We tend to focus on the things we do not control, and these items derail us the most.  

Teaching Point:  If you are more concerned with the items you cannot control, you will always feel overwhelmed because you do not have the ability to change them and this will cause a lot of stress. 

I hope this exercise helps you release so you can breathe deeply and let go of all the bad feelings of not getting what is important done.  This is a great exercise to do sporadically to make sure you are staying on top of everything important.