I have this weird relationship with procrastination. It doesn’t happen magically or behind my back. I am consciously aware of when I do it. I even know why. Mostly it is because of a feeling I want to avoid but sometimes is because I want to avoid the big work I will have to do on the other side of it. I don’t create excuses. I don’t allow myself to have excuses. I just don’t do what I don’t want to do and offer no justification. Lately I’ve been feeling some changes in that relationship and they are all uncomfortable.
In my journey to become a life coach I have been having to confront a lot of my own issues. I have been reading and listening to experienced life coaches that don’t appear to hesitate to drop gems of knowledge and wisdom. As I work to internalize what I can, I come to realize that there are paradigm level issues I have that I must work through. While rewarding, this is emotionally and spiritually exhausting work that requires my conscious effort and energy.
One of the recent gems I received is this: Your mind constantly works to protect you, to keep you safe. This is a good thing and part of your design. The problem is that your mind cannot do protection and growth at the same time and naturally leans hard into protection. If growth is your goal you have to override this natural tendency. You can change your relationship with what you try to avoid or you can consciously power through and override that protection. The latter is the hardest as it requires a lot of energy and prolonged discipline. The former, if successful, can remove that which is in your way, freeing you to move forward without requiring herculean effort to grow.
What I have been finding lately is that when I finally confront my procrastination on a particular issue I find it wasn’t nearly as bad as I thought. That which I was trying to avoid in reality wasn’t much of a threat at all. I had just made it a big thing in my head. It annoys me to think of the time I wasted avoiding my own creation. Regardless I am working to change my relationship with procrastination, to in fact turn it into something that is more like the opposite. I am looking for unprecedented personal growth and development on the other side.
What’s the opposite of procrastination? In this case I think it’s just proactivity.