I have been meaning to write about procrastination for a while, but I kept putting it off. I’ve been procrastinating for years; one of these days I’m going to have to get some help for this problem. No, really, if it weren’t for the last minute, I wouldn’t get anything done. As Mark Twain said, “Never put off until tomorrow what you can do the day after tomorrow.” Or, as somebody else said, I like my work. It fascinates me; I can sit and look at it for hours. And drumroll…the best part about procrastination: You’re never bored, because there are all kinds of things that you could be doing!
For years, my writing method has been to think of a bunch of other stuff — doing laundry is a fine example — that’s suddenly very important. Then I waste copious amounts of time, hours, days, or weeks, doing that, until the torment of not doing the actual work is so great that I just have to do it. My friend, Scott Price (http://www.gladtobeyourdad.com) recently wrote about this in a newsletter: “Procrastination is wanting or even having a plan, but not working it.” It’s amazing, to one interested in words, how often the rear end figures into discussions of procrastination: I need a good kick in the pants; to poop, figuratively, or get off the pot. As Eliza Doolittle shouted at Ascot: “Come on, Dover! Move yer bloomin’ arse!” And yet, as countless bathroom graffiti wits have written, “here I sit, broken-hearted… ” Got work to do, can’t get started.
I blame spiritual attack. I do. Laziness — guilty; fear of success or failure — definitely; resentment that I have to do something I don’t want to do — yeah, there’s that, too…. But call it gremlins or the devil — the bad spirits in this world want us not to succeed. Therefore, in administering myself this butt-kickin’ I think I am moving in the right direction. Forward, even if it’s just one small, reluctant step at a time. New goal: Actual momentum.
P.S. About the picture of my To Do list: I don’t know why it’s sideways. I have spent 20 minutes — wasting time is my destiny — taking that stupid picture and every time I upload it to this website, it goes sideways. This pretty much sums up how things are going around here.
P.S.S. The picture seems to be fixed now.
This post and all blog content Ⓒ Copyright Janet Farrar Worthington.