Timothy Booker

Beth spends hours sorting through papers and straightening her desk rather than working on the report due at the end of the week. Greg hides from his sales manager because he hasn’t put together the sales figures his manager requested. Marjorie knows she should be sorting her records to prepare for filing her income tax return, but they are still piling up in a box.

What do these people all have in common?


Putting off projects that need to be done, dragging feet when it comes to doing crucial tasks … everyone procrastinates at one time or another. But if you find yourself continually behind schedule and never caught up, it may be time to examine the reasons behind it. Here are some possibilities:

Fear of failure.

Sometimes we delay a project or task because subconsciously we are afraid it is beyond our capabilities. We say, “I haven’t had time to do it,” rather than “I tried and failed.” The solution is a positive attitude. We are more capable than we give ourselves credit for. Don’t let the fear of making a mistake hold you back. Everyone makes mistakes now and then, and most can be rectified.

Feeling overwhelmed.

Faced with a formidable undertaking, some will find reason after reason to delay buckling down. That’s the time to remember the old Chinese maxim,’-‘A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” You can make substantial progress by breaking projects down into incremental
steps and focusing on one step at a time.

Lack of time

This is a common excuse. Yet we each are allotted the same 24 hours every day. So why do some people’ accomplish monumental feats while others don’t? It’s a matter of time management and individual priorities. Start to make use of every minute. Can you wake up just 15 minutes earlier for a jog around the block? Can you eat a sandwich at your desk now and then to finish a project that otherwise might be neglected? Another solution: Give yourself a “productivity hour”: one hour a day, either at the shop or at home, where you,shut the door, refuse telephone calls and concentrate on one special task.

Make a habit of writing down your priorities every day. Have it become as much of your morning routine as drinking coffee or brushing your teeth. Then focus on doing as much on that list as possible. There will always be interruptions and delays that can’t be anticipated, so don’t hold yourself to too strict a schedule. At the end of each day, check off what you have accomplished, and move the rest to the top of the list for the next day.

There is great satisfaction in seeing a project through from start to finish. Let yourself enjoy the feeling of achievement. DO IT NOW!

The above article came from the Pentecostal Voice Magazine of Tennessee. March 1988. Anon. p.5

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