I was at lunch with my friend Sean this week and told him that procrastination is the biggest adversary to the success of my business. Procrastination is not an organizational reality to be managed, it's a bad habit that needs to be addressed and eradicated. If procrastination is the art of managing yesterday, then perpetual procrastination becomes the art of managing last week, last month, last year, or last decade.
Have you ever found yourself dealing with a problem that seems to never go away? I'm not talking about Paul's thorn in his side, but an ongoing issue that is squarely in your purview, your responsibility, it's your call. But because of some set of uncomfortable dynamics or even laziness, you don't act. You put it off. You delay, ignore, sweep it under the rug and hope it goes away, but it never does. It dominates your internal conversation and eventually discussions with your spouse, team or staff. A closer look will reveal procrastination at work. You are using time as a credit card. Putting off for tomorrow, something we should be paying for today.
Jesus said in Matthew 6:34; "Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble". Jesus is so right. Not only is the troubles of the day sufficient, when you add the troubles of yesterday, last week, month, or year to the pile, it becomes overwhelming. Not only do I pay for my own procrastination, I pay for the procrastination of others AND others pay for my procrastination. Brothers and sisters, to quote Paul, this should not be.
Four signs we have a problem with procrastination:
1. The snooze alarm is our friend.
2. We are perpetually late for commitments (please note I said commitments).
3. We have continued and unresolved issues that are uncomfortable and in our domain.
4. We lack in generosity in time or money.
I wonder if we consider the actual cost in terms of mental energy, additional time requirements, or the delays in our promotion due to unresolved issues or ignored areas of needed growth. Friends, when considering our assignments, callings, and mantle, procrastination is a saboteur who's lightest cost is delay. Gone unchecked, as procrastination matures, it stops us from attaining all that the Father has for us in terms of blessing and assignment.
1. Establish a start up morning routine and stick to it. No snooze alarm. If you are married or single with a close friend, look to your spouse/friend for help with accountability. The routine needs to be adequate to insure fix number two is possible.
2. Establish being on time for work/meetings/commitments mandatory. Quit giving yourself permission to consider this "a process". That is procrastination at work. Understand that you being late to YOUR COMMITMENTS or in fulfilling YOUR COMMITMENTS is saying to others "my time is more important than your time" and accurately translates into "I consider myself more important than you".
3. Identify unresolved issues and prioritize those issues every day until resolved. This may mean working overtime. This is the cost of procrastination.
4. Set up a routine that involves generosity. Pay your tithe/offering through a scheduled payment. Set aside$5, $10. $20 or $100 bill in your wallet/purse and ask the Holy Spirit to show you were to give it. Repeat once per week/month. Look in your heart for what outreach makes you passionate, and find a way to volunteer your time. It's hard to give someone a free gift then charge them for it. Sacrifice is a requirement for developing a heart of generosity.
Friends, I'll conclude with a big ME TOO! I especially struggle with area number three above. I am currently working overtime in areas that unquestionably should have been addressed weeks, months and even a year ago. My company and family are paying for my procrastination. No condemnation, just truth. Father, thank you for forgiving me:)
I'd love to hear your thoughts.
C U on the streets. #berevealed