Defining, dismantling and defeating our procrastination tendencies
(We apologize for the sound quality in the first audio segment - it clears up quickly!) I’m not even going to ask the question because, let’s face it we all know what the answer is. Procrastination is common with all of us. The only real question is, “what kind of procrastinator am I? Do I put things off only when I’m not in the mood to do them? Do I some avoid tasks like the plague because I really thoroughly dislike them? Or am I the guy who just doesn’t seem to want to do anything? You know - the guy who has mastered the fine art of creative avoidance, which makes me actually look like I am busy and productive, when in reality I am running and hiding. What are the implications of being a Christian procrastinator? Our lives are supposed to be all about doing the will of God through Jesus and that is not really something we ought to be toying with? So, what’s the answer? How do we face, understand and finally defeat the urge to procrastinate?
The first thing to know about procrastination is that there are actually two kinds. The first is the, “I have a deadline and I’m gonna put this thing off for as long as physically possible” kind. This very common thought process will typically place us in a blissful state of denial until the eleventh hour. At that point, we rely on our deadline-imposed adrenaline rush to come to our aid. Unless you are a chronic procrastinator, once you get through the sleepless and caffeine-crazed phase, you resolve to never let things go that far again. That decision is sound and adhered to...until the next deadline comes!
The second kind of “I’m not going to do this now” nonsense is actually worse. It is when we have a task or change or project due much farther into the future. Putting it off is easy – too easy – as that nebulous future date or time has little or no impact on the present stresses of life. We go merrily upon our way with a sense of security and calm, as we have seemingly countless tomorrows at our disposal. In matters of health and security down the road, this brand of procrastination has a cost factor that can literally be life-threatening.
None of this is good, especially if you are a Christian and your entire life is supposed to be built around walking in Jesus’ footsteps. So, what do we do about it? The good news is that there are lots of scriptural and practical ways to develop a “do it now” approach. Check out our November 5, 2018 podcast, “What can I do Now about Procrastination later?” to tap into the many suggestions and principles available. We reveal the four strong predictors that bring us to the door of procrastination, and we talk about three simple steps that counteract its effects. Then there is the fascinating and important conversation regarding the similarities and differences between applying a patience based approach to our tasks versus procrastination laced escape from them. Don’t hesitate – log on now!
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