I’m a master at procrastinating. If there’s a job I can do later, then I will! It’s no exaggeration to tell you that I’m a terrible manager of my time. The reason why I impose so many rules and routines on my schedule is to kind of keep me in check. Because, to be honest, if left to my own devices with no to do list, nothing would get done!
What’s the number one thing I do when I really should be doing something else?
Or organising. These kind of go hand in hand for me. I usually start cleaning because I look at a big pile of something that’s been an eyesore for some time and think ‘I really need to organise that’. Then I go all Rambo on it and attack like a whirling dervish until a day (or two) later it’s beginning to look slightly better.
I call this ‘Procrasticleaning‘. I just made that up. It’s not a word (yet). And I do it much too often.
Like this week….when I should have been working on my blog. Instead what I did was I emptied all my kids clothes out of their closet and dresser and organised them into piles to keep/store/chuck – you get the idea. My kids bedroom, for the past 3 weeks or more, has looked like it was ransacked by tribe of chimpanzees and then inhabited by a homeless community! It was truly horrifying! And frankly, I’d had enough of walking past it and cringing in disgust. Clothes and toys were EVERYWHERE!!
The dirty truth
The thing with procrasticleaning is that it’s always justified. Did I need to sort out my kids room? Absolutely! Should I have done it before doing some work on my blog? Probably not.
Really?? If you’re a mum, you’re probably sitting there aghast right now wondering how I could let my kids live in utter chaos. But the fact is, my kids are all well fed and clothed. And my two oldest kids are very capable of tidying up their own messes. I didn’t have to tidy up that mess. I could have made them do it by way of a bribe or threat or something equally motivating. But instead I chose to clean rather than work on my blog. And I shouldn’t have.
You want to know the dirty truth?
I already knew that. Am I totally shameless?
You see, I already know my priorities and what tasks should rank higher in importance on my list. And yet, there I was labelling bags with clothes and retrieving the duplo hiding behind the cot. There I was procrasticleaning.
I wasn’t procrastinating because I didn’t know what I should really be doing. I knew it all too well – and I was scared of it.
The job I should have been doing felt overwhelming and frightening. I guess cause it means a lot to me. I don’t want to fail at it.
Doing it scared
I was talking on the phone with my husband yesterday about something and he said to me ‘That which we fear, we create’. Our conversation wasn’t related to my blog. But it was so perfect for what I was going through. By being afraid of failing with my blog, I was shying away from working on it – thereby ensuring that my blog would fail!
There’s a phrase from Ruth Soukup that I’d heard many times in the past. She says ‘Do it scared’. I never really understood what that meant – until now.
Things won’t get easier or less scary if I procrastinate from the task I should be doing. The fear will still be there waiting when I go back to that job. I just need to tie up my bootstraps and ‘do it scared’. The thing I most fear is not likely going to happen. In fact, it probably will happen if I don’t do it.
So, if you’ve been procrastinating, I challenge you to go back to that task that you’re avoiding and just ‘do it scared’. Ask yourself, ‘what’s the worse that can happen?’. And then tell yourself that the chances of that are slim to none, because they probably are. Just do it scared.
The cleaning can wait.