If you’re reading this, then I’ve finally hit “Publish” in my WordPress dashboard.
If ever I was going to pour myself a celebratory glass of champagne, this would be the time. Instead, I’m far more likely to be found enjoying a delicious green smoothie or sipping on a refreshing glass of mineral water.
Now you know all my secrets! Or maybe not. You might just have to stick around if you want to hear more of those.
I’ve had enough of letting procrastination keep me from achieving my dreams.
Seriously, I’ve had enough of coming to the end of another year and realizing that my goals are still the same as they were at the beginning of the year.
It’s about 18 months now since I found an index card among a pile of papers that had been left neglected (another serious failing of mine – don’t get me started!)
On that index card I’d written several goals that I’d intended to achieve in that particular year. Reading those goals, I realized with some dismay that I’d achieved none of them.
No change. No progress. No action.
“How awful that more than a year has passed and I still have exactly the same goals” I berated myself.
If only that were true!
When I turned the index card over, I was dumbfounded by the date that those goals had been written: 2006
Three years! No change. No progress. NO ACTION!
If you’re as disgusted with me as I was, I hate to think how you might feel knowing that eighteen months later, I have yet to achieve any of those goals.
You might be letting me off the hook right now, telling yourself – maybe even wanting to reassure me – that the goals I set must have been too big, too far out of reach.
I wish I could say you were right. But they really weren’t.
These were simple goals: get healthy and lose weight, plant a vegie garden, pay off our credit cards. But as simple as they were, in five years I was never able to move past the habit of inaction, of continual procrastination, in order to achieve those goals.
I’m not a big believer in New Year’s Resolutions, and it’s a long time since I’ve made any myself. I prefer these days to write and review my goals regularly throughout the year. I did, however, start this year with a plan: 2011 is the year that I will learn, whatever it takes, to finally transform my dreams and goals into reality.
This year I will learn to take action.
I have a small confession to make: Until just over 2 weeks ago, this baby blog was not even a twinkle in it’s mother’s eye.
I was intending to spend some time working on blog posts for another blog entirely – one that’s still in it’s procrastination stages – when the inspiration for this blog hit me. (I now know there’s nothing like a relaxing beach holiday for generating a healthy flow of ideas, whether you’re wanting them or not.)
You might have gathered that I’m not usually so impulsive when it comes to following through on a new idea. The last brilliant idea I had spent close to five years “percolating” inside my head. As far as percolation times go, I think that one was well and truly overcooked!
Fortunately that idea, to create my own online bookshop, is now so close to the final stages of creation that I’m almost ready for another champagne mineral water.
It’s taken far too long for me to take action and bring that dream to life.
And so, two weeks ago, when the idea for this blog came to me, I saw it as an opportunity. I could push the idea aside, too busy right now to give it the time it deserves.
I could add it to my list of goals, only to write five years from now about another great idea that came to nothing.
Or I could grab hold of the inspiration and run with it, wherever it will take me, knowing that this is my chance to make 2011 all I want it to be. This is my chance to TAKE ACTION.
I’m not expecting it to be easy. If procrastination was easy to overcome, I’d have done that years ago. And I know there are plenty of reasons why I procrastinate. I’ll write about those in another post.
I’ve taken the first step though. I’ve taken action. Now for the next step…and the next…and the next.
But first, that celebratory drink!
Great resources for procrastinators:
- This Year I Will… How to Finally Change a Habit, Keep a Resolution, or Make a Dream Come True M J Ryan
- Eat That Frog!: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time Brian Tracy
- The Now Habit: A Strategic Program for Overcoming Procrastination and Enjoying Guilt-Free Play Neil Fiore
- Making Ideas Happen: Overcoming the Obstacles Between Vision and Reality Mark Levy
Related blog posts by other awesome bloggers:
- The Little Book of Procrastination Remedies by Leo Babauta of Zen Habits
- 50 Procrastination Techniques for Aspiring Writers by Suzannah Windsor Freeman of Write it Sideways
Has procrastination kept you from achieving your dreams? Or do you have any great suggestions for overcoming procrastination? I’d love to hear from you. Please share your thoughts by clicking on “comments” at the top of this post.
You can read more about me, and about The Inspired Notebook, here.