There are many reasons we procrastinate.
Isabella’s manager at work gave her a project to complete by the end of the week. Isabella worried about it, but didn’t start until the day before it was due. She turned it in the next morning, but she was disappointed with her effort. I never do things good enough, she thought. I’m always a failure.
Reba and her husband were going on a cruise to the Greek Islands. She was very excited but didn’t get organized to get everything done. The night before they left, she still had laundry to do and bills to pay. Why is my life so stressful? she wondered. I never seem to get things done on time.
Olivia worked from home as a medical transcriptionist for a local psychiatrist. She was very thorough at her job and loved to study her cases, but lost track of time most days so she was late picking her kids up from school. Her husband had to call and remind her to keep to her schedule. I feel like a little child that has to be told what to do.
Our childhood circumstances dictate a personal belief system that we carry with us as we mature. Convictions that worked for us as children may not be helpful for us as adults.
Journal your childhood assumptions
I never do things good enough.
I’m always a failure.
My life is stressful.
I never get things done on time.
I feel like a child that needs to be told what to do.
Rewrite these outdated assumptions as adult affirmations
In order to change these beliefs, you have to change your feelings about yourself. Reprogram your brain to know of your competence and success in life. If your change your thinking, your feelings will follow.
I am competent in the workplace.
I am successful.
My life is peaceful.
I am organized
I care for my children.
I am on time.
I enjoy a schedule.
Repeat your adult affirmations often.
Say the statements you write often—when you’re on the way to work or fixing a meal. The more you say them to yourself, the more you will believe them. Bask in your goodness and new found self esteem.
Visualize the changes in your life.
See yourself as capable and efficient. The new you is qualified to take on the tasks of each day. Give yourself permission to see these changes.
Pair a negative task with a positive one.
When you have something you really don’t want to do, pair it with a task you love. I don’t enjoy doing the dishes so I tell myself I can watch my favorite television show or read my book as soon as they are done.
Praise yourself for each small thought change and behavior revision you make. You are worth it. With some concentrated effort your procrastination pattern will be thing of the past.
Read more about this topic and others in Christy Monson’s new book, Becoming Free, A Woman’s Guide to Internal Strength, available September 1st 2013.