Procrastinating is your enemy
Every time that you don't take actions that can and will improve your life and your future you are procrastinating. Procrastination is the constant thought that there will be time tomorrow to take care of this dream. Tomorrow turns into a week, a week into a month, and months into years until one day, our lives have lost the potency they should have held.
We need to realize that our time is truly limited, and our success will only be realized by the actions we take now. Stop Procrastinating, I’m encouraging you to simply BURN YOUR TOMORROWS!! Now what?!! Our tomorrows will never come, so the inevitable answer is TODAY is all we have to relentlessly pursue our dreams, to put that vision out there where others can see it, to say “Okay, here I am, and I’m going to make my stand. Whatever it is, I’m going to take inventory and figure out how to market it.” Others will see our bright light and come along side us when we take it out of the dark corridors of the mind and make it a reality.
Procrastination robs us of our own potential
I think of Moses in the Bible simply minding his business as he tends his sheep. He starts out as this prince of Egypt, who had been adopted by Pharaoh’s daughter, who for 40 years has lived the abundant life of luxurious palaces in the greatest nation on the earth at that time. But he was actually the son of a Hebrew slave woman. His dream was not about himself, but about his family and his people. Often when we really stop to look deeper our real dreams are about adding value to others. This is when we need to know our why.
One day, in an effort to help a couple of slaves that were being beaten, he kills an Egyptian. As a murderer, he flees the land and goes into exile for the next 40 years. He begins living daily in a new existence as a sheepherder, no longer as a prince of Egypt or a significant Hebrew leader. He gets caught up in the day to day of sheepherding. He works for his father-in-law, of all people!! He thinks to himself, “One day I’ll go back and help my people.”
How often have we thought, “One day I will start this business?” “One day I will go back and get my degree.” “One day I will move to such and such country to open a tiki hut on the beach.” “Tomorrow I will save a little.” “Maybe tomorrow I will take that second job.” “Maybe tomorrow I will start that diet.” We plop down on our favorite chair, and our dreams vaporize in the thought of tomorrow. As if that wasn't enough we also get bogged down in our self-defeating thoughts, "If only I had not killed that Egyptian." or "If only I had not made that unfortunate investment. Now I am stuck," Etc...
We can lie to ourselves and think that because of a mistake we made along the way that we are no longer worthy of the great destiny or dreams that are in our own hearts. This can turn into the worst kind of procrastination I have ever seen. It can take years to overcome our lack of self-worth as we continue beating ourselves down. TRY THIS: Do an inventory check on yourself. Sometimes your problem isn't in the day to day of life but there is a much deeper issue that you need to resolve so you can get back to the business of living.
Take action NOW
For Moses and Aaron there was a comfort zone. A place that they could go to hide from their destiny and their dreams. Many of us have those places. Those comfort zones where we don't have to take action toward our dreams but we feel good because we are doing something.
A misplaced action is the biggest liar in your life and will deceive you for years. It tells you that you are being productive when you actually are not. Good is often the enemy of GREAT. Doing chores if you run a home business for example. Talking with one client instead of chasing down new ones; quit sabotaging yourself.
1. Know where you are going
If I tell you NOT to think about a monkey eating a banana while wearing a green hoodie, what do you immediately picture? We must tell our brains where to go and what to look for. What is your goal? Where do you want to go? What ONE thing do you need to do today? Think small and be very specific with these tasks. Then, write it down as a constant reminder of where you need to focus your attention.
2. Tell people you’re on your way
When you tell someone you’re going to give them a ride, you always pick them up, right? If you tell someone you’re coming, you don’t let them down. Keep yourself accountable by telling others to keep you accountable and letting them know where you want to go. Share your goals with the important people in your life to ensure that you follow through!
3. Identify detours
What do you do and where do you go when you procrastinate? What tasks or shiny objects distract you from the bigger picture and take you on a detour from reaching your goals? I have noticed that sometimes I can clutter my workspace with things that are not productive. I will leave my office, work from home, then a coffee shop, etc. Change it up when you identify detours.
Counter Procrastination with Inspiration
After 40 years consumed in these kinds of thoughts, Moses has one crazy encounter with a burning bush where he hears from God. He grabs his sheepherder staff and his brother, the first member of his staff who eventually gets promoted to Head Priest. In that culture and country, Head Priest was a pretty respectable job title, but it started out as volunteer work and a willingness to go along with a vision that could cost them their lives.
They head back down the mountain. Tomorrow be forgotten. We either accomplish the dream or die in the effort. These two guys know what it is like to burn their tomorrows. No more putting it off, no more procrastinating. These guys are consumed with the idea of delivering a nation from slavery. They head out with no army, just their staff, faith, and God. According to the story, seven days later, with no army and no money these fellows are walking out with a freed nation, their former captors even sponsoring them.
Reckless?!? That is an understatement. We may think we have obstacles and hindrances to our dreams. We do!! I’m not going to argue there, because I’ll never win. Regardless, nothing you are facing, nothing standing in your way, is that insurmountable. Moses still influences culture worldwide.
His legacy, based on his actions, still inspires multiple cultures around the globe every day. He somehow had a passion and a willingness to dare to do the impossible. Imagine what he must have been feeling as he started his journey back to Egypt: fear, exhilaration, and the determination just to keep putting one foot in front of the other.
What can you do TODAY?
That is the price of saying good-bye to our tomorrows. We realize that today is the day to begin living our dreams. The time is NOW!!