There are plenty of habits that can slow or even stop us from achieving success and making our dreams a reality. We’re all guilty of avoiding tasks that have the potential to be uncomfortable. Maybe you have:
- Dragged your feet on sending a group e-mail about a class project.
- Stopped short of picking up the phone to resolve a conflict, and, in a lame attempt, took another shot at a text.
- Decided to write a paper or work write-up . . . tomorrow.
- Failed to clean up your messy desk (or entire room).
The list goes on and on. There is a significant chasm between those of us who take action and those who drag their feet every chance they get. One of the most debilitating habits we can have is procrastination.
If you have any desire to be successful, consider these reasons to avoid procrastination and get moving:
- Power. Those who procrastinate give their power away to the clock and calendar.
- Positive energy. The sheer act of procrastination is an energy drain. It nags at you and slows you down, both mentally and physically. Leaving things unfinished leads to a life of mediocrity, which isn’t very rewarding.
- Progress. You never really get anywhere. The ability to start a project is admirable. The willingness and determination to see it through the mark of a true professional. Individuals who delay taking action spend an obscene amount of time making excuses about how a task can wait until later. This is not a way of life; it depletes your mental and emotional vitality.
- Plan. Most things procrastinators plan to do get bumped, postponed, rescheduled, or canceled. It’s a vicious circle.
- Purpose. It’s difficult to live with purpose when there’s no sense of urgency. Ever. You exist in a bubble of stagnation, watching other people moving forward.
- Persistence. Procrastinators use their creativity in interesting, yet counterproductive ways. They can quickly drop a litany of (creative) excuses about why something can wait. They don’t persevere; they ponder reasons to set things aside and delay taking action.
In today’s quickly changing world, agility is critical to success. Agile thinkers are leaders who can pivot and take action to seize opportunities. People who procrastinate are rarely agile. They think about how they’ll seize today’s opportunities. Tomorrow.