January 16 – Breaking my procrastination habit

January 16. “Procrastination is opportunity’s assassin.” (Victor Kiam)

You would think, for all the list making and goal setting I do, that I am not a procrastinator. You would think the way I seized my health journey in the past year would be further evidence of my lack of procrastination. You might even think that the fact that I post here nearly daily would be evidence. Sadly, you’d be wrong.

The fact is that I am a procrastinator. Just as one silly example, I have been known to stress all through the weekend before taxes are due – when I knew I’d be getting a goodly sized refund. Why on God’s green earth would anyone float the government a couple of extra months? Who would do such a thing? A procrastinator would, that’s who.

The truth is that I regularly procrastinate tasks both large and small. I definitely put off unpleasant tasks, but sometimes I even will delay something I really like to do for something else that seems better, like doing nothing.

Kiam is right, of course, procrastination is the assassin of opportunity. When I leave things to the last minute, I make decisions based on the time remaining. Practicality and urgency take over. When I start things early I give myself a far better opportunity to make good choices, and to keep open a wider variety of options.

There are plenty of times in my life when I have seized the opportunity to start quickly. The thing they share in common is that I completed them with high quality. It’s not that my procrastinated products aren’t of good quality, but there is something special about those things where I started early and worked hard throughout the time that was available.

As I am wrapping up a week of work where setting objectives has been on my mind, it is good to remind myself that once they are done at the end of the month, it will be very important to start now on those that will take the year to complete, and not wait until my mid-year review to suddenly start.

Even at home this is true. I set up a list of home projects for the year for myself and my wife. I have a long weekend starting at the end of my work day today. What better opportunity to knock a couple of the small ones off the list. I can choose 1 or 2 that I can do myself, and not even have to schedule my wife’s precious time.

Today my reflection is on breaking my procrastination habit. This weekend I will accomplish!

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