Okay, maybe it’s not today. Maybe you read those words and and say,
“Hold on, do you have any idea how busy my day is today?!”
If that’s the case then maybe tomorrow has to be the day.
But wait, that’s the problem isn’t it? I’ll do my passion project, that thing I really want or need to do tomorrow. Tomorrow and tomorrow. Whatever it is that you’re wanting to do that gets buried in procrastination and busyness. I get it. I’m just coming out of a tidal wave of busy and procrastination myself.
Today, I have set aside time to write. I love to write, it’s hard but satisfying. It doesn’t just flow but after I do some or as it’s happening it feels great. But I had to set the time aside to do it.
And then I had to honour that appointment and show up.
A big part of life is showing up.
Here’s what worked for me and might help you to get to that thing you want to do:
Start Yesterday – To set aside the time to write I had to start yesterday. For me, what helps is a to-do list where I can cross things off. Did that yesterday, accomplished some good stuff but didn’t finish my list. Big surprise! Is it ever finished? Well, sometimes, temporarily at least.
Schedule the Undone Stuff – I left the undone things and set them for this afternoon. You might not be able to do them in the afternoon, maybe it’s the evening or early another morning or whatever works. But set a time for them so they won’t tug at you for attention.
Set the time for The Thing – Make an appointment with yourself for your creative, extra, inspiring, productive, important task that you’ve let slide too long.
Show Up – Honour that appointment with yourself. Show up. Repeat after me, “a big part of life is showing up”. For your kids’ events, for friends who need you, for work, for time with God, for life to be more than a blur you need to show up. And for that project you’ve been putting off need to show up.
This includes not letting other things interrupt or distract you. Turn off your phone. Okay, if you need to be available for emergences —REALLY need to, then don’t. But otherwise turn off notifications, ringers, reminders, social media or anything that will pull you off your appointment.
Arg, even as I write this I was pulled off my task by a text. But it’s from my beloved wife. I answered. When she texts I answer. That’s my fault since I didn’t warn her that I needed uninterrupted time.
If you can find a space where no one can distract you that will help. Or tell people you’re trying to focus and can’t be interrupted. If they know it’s important they can be enlisted to help you by not interrupting. But you just might have to pray and use your will power not to be pulled from what you set to do.
Resist Temptation & Procrastination – Oh, as I look at the footstool I remember the one leg is coming loose and I need to tighten it — resist! Oh, I meant to text so and so — resist! Oh I need to check the temperature in Saskatchewan next July since we’re thinking of holidaying there —- resist, resist, resist! Look at the clock, remind yourself of your appointment and keep it. Stay on task.
Do it Again – Whether it was a struggle or stunning success. Bear with yourself even if it wasn’t a resounding success. And do it again another day. Set your time and keep it. You can do this.