Seeing Procrastination in a New Light

There is a way to avoid procrastination; simply avoid doing anything you find challenging. You won’t procrastinate but you and everyone around you will be bored! When viewed correctly, boredom and procrastination can provide direction to a full life. When depressed, a person feels neither. As normal emotions return, a person begins to feel bored. Boredom results from a subconscious awareness of available potential and enjoyment in one or more of your relationships. Procrastination, on the other hand, is a part of the next step in exploring this potential.

You may be struggling in your relationship with your spouse, children, friends or at work. The first step in such struggles is often ignoring or taking for granted all that the relationship offers. For example, you may have been attracted to someone who has a lot of friends and is exciting. Now, after a few years of marriage, you may find yourselves on the couch watching TV. Your child may show an interest in sports but you might focus on their academics because it’s more important. You might enjoy the excitement of sales but agree to a position in management. Don’t you love the paperwork! There may be reasons behind such choices but “the clock is ticking”. Such decisions may seem easier and more conservative now but eventually, they lead to pain and suffering.

There is a reason you default into these less than human but all too common decisions. It requires that you learn a new way of thinking, acting and doing something. Trying new things comes easy in childhood but increasingly as adults we try to put “new wine into old wineskins”. In other words, we tend to expand on what we already know, rather than explore and try something new.

Such an approach to life limits you. Your subconscious mind knows this and you become bored. This leads to general feelings of irritability and anger. You may even feel tentative and anxious. Eventually, you will try to fill this emptiness with some form of addiction for example, TV, computer games like “Candy Crush”, food, pornography and the like. In the end, this leads to negative judgement of you (shame) or the other person (jerk-face) in the relationship. This is not the full life you were born to live.

The Challenge of Change

Try letting go of knowing what you both like and ask the question, “What else might we enjoy?”. Yes, you know you will enjoy a dinner at your favorite restaurant eating your favorite meal. You know how long it will take to get there, where you will park and how long it will take to be served. Yes, the food will taste the same way it always does. You will see the same decorations, see some of the same people, you will likely say many of the same things - like you always do. Is anyone bored yet??

Even considering other choices may feel overwhelming. When someone finally ventures a choice, negative comparisons are immediately drawn. For instance, “Yes, I’ve heard of that new place on the river but…” or “Yes, my child, I’d love to see you at the Olympic trials but…” or “Yes, I read that book you left in the bathroom about spicing up our intimacy but…” This is a part of the second step in making the decision to explore the full potential of your relationship. You take the time to notice options and compare them to what you might like, particularly unmet needs. This is the only way to be fully present in your relationships and in your life. This second step is accompanied by your tendency to procrastinate.

Much of your brain is devoted to learning routines. In general, the more you practice them, the better you get. Your routines tend to build on one another. For example, if you tend to eat out at the same place at the same time, you will likely start to see some of the same people. When you talk to someone there, you will likely say more or less the same things every time. To change such a routine, you must connect with a desire explore opportunities and be willing to take risk. For example, if you see that couple again at dinner, you might start asking a few more questions. Ask to sit with them. Get to know them and eventually plan a vacation with them in Rio.

Each step in the process of changing a habit requires new learning. How do we start a real conversation with that other couple? What if they are weird? What if they think we are weird? If we do this, are we committing ourselves to always sit with them? The same sort of concerns come up with offering to help your child’s coach. If the pain and suffering are given time to create habits of their own, you can get stuck meeting your needs in addictive ways, for example, pornography. Here, there is less biological impetus to risk changes in sexual intimacy with the one you love and this sets you both up for disaster.

Procrastination: Discover Your Potential

Procrastination has you put off even thinking about potential changes you might like to try. It leads to half-hearted efforts, an emphasis on the difficulties of change, concern about failure, how it might look to others severely limiting the potential of your relationship. Like all habits, procrastination tends to generalize to other relationships. No one gets to see all that you are and have to offer - not even you.

If you are procrastinating, see it as a good sign as it indicates an awareness of who you are and what you have to offer. Addictive needs are superficial, not fully connected to who you are and generally don’t lead to procrastination. The fullness of your potential causes the many changes necessary to change such healthy habits. It is trial and error with little initial expectation. It is new learning and it is learning to be flexible in your approach to yourself and those you love. It is the excitement of trying, talking about it and trying again! It is taking control of your calendar and your daily habits. It is knowing what you really care about and emotionally stacking your efforts for what you really want.

Learn to enjoy what you know to be true and learn to enjoy the moment when you haven’t got a clue. Guide all of your efforts by the desire that the “Child of God” in you live “full out” with the “Child of God” in others.

For more ways to gain greater confidence in life, discover and leverage your abilities and cultivate meaningful relationships, sign up risk-free for the Grow in Oneness Course.