Happy New Year, former procrastinators!
Celebrating a fresh start, and positioning myself to make the most of 2018, I’ve been reviewing lessons from 2017. I want to benefit from them in the New Year.
Here are some of the most helpful to me:
- Take advantage of the God-given ability to change. Edit my life as I go along so I do not end up with unchangeable chapters I wish I’d not written – or unwritten chapters I wish I’d done.
- Routines are like bowling bumpers. They enable me to stay out of the gutter and in the lane so I actually hit the priority pins! Routine enables me to do the most important things. It establishes and protects a set time or procedure for doing priorities.
- Establish routine around priorities – not activities. Don’t let activities push my bowling ball into the gutter. Pray for discernment regarding what activities are priority and how to grow and contribute through them.
- Pause, don’t stop. Interruptions can halt our work. The day is not “shot.” Stay in the game. Return to work as soon as possible, minutes or months later. Pause on the TV remote does not cut the power. Remember my connection to the Holy Spirit’s power.
- Focus on the joy ahead – not on the unpleasantness of the task I must go through. Choose the reward ahead over the comfort of the moment.
- Focus on the truth that moves me out of procrastination. True, “It’s hard to find time to read,” but focus on “I can reserve 30 minutes four times a week.”
- Dealing with paper proficiently must be part of my daily routine. Piles are collections of delayed decisions which delay me further.
- Pruning is necessary for thriving. Stop nursing something along that needs to be removed – a work project, a membership, unused recipes. Pray for discernment, make the cut – and flourish.
- Live with margin. Build in extra time for tasks and safeguard time that is unplanned. Set myself up to be calm, thoughtful, joyful.
- Take the time to think deeply about issues. Make sure I drink deeply in God’s presence, often and unrushed.
- Ask “What CAN I do?” Revolutionary! At work, in the kitchen. Start with one small thing I know. Learn as I go. “Eat canned vegetables.”
- Move seldom-used items out of my everyday path. (from kitchen counters, cosmetics, files)
- Respect lessons learned earlier. Don’t fall for the lure of thinking this time will be different. (I can make the bus if I hurry.)
- Respect boundaries. (Keep books that fit on the shelves and no more. Limit phone call time.)
- Do not delay because I claim others or circumstances are at fault. Act on my responsibilities.
- Let go what is not mine to control. Where I am responsible, be faithful.
- Jesus helps me repent daily by replacing procrastination with diligence. Gospel living.
What helped you move out of procrastination in 2017?