Motivation

There was a day when I was self-motivated. I would do things simply because they needed done. I had a list of things that needed done daily, and checking things off my list was one of my greatest accomplishments. If I did something that wasn't on the list, I would add it so that I could check it off. This kind of organizational guruism lasted through at least 2 kids. But somewhere along the line, things deteriorated.

There was one day, or maybe three, when I didn't get everything done on my list. I prioritize, of course, and sometimes mundane things like doing the dishes got pushed off onto the next day because there are only 24 hours to work with. But big things, like looming deadlines, were eventually put off. I went to bed with a heavy weight surrounding me, wondering what the world would be like in the morning because I didn't get a Big Thing accomplished that was on my list.

When I woke up, the world was just the same. I was shocked. Gravity still worked, the Earth was rotating on it's axis, and the universe didn't explode. In fact, I had more energy to accomplish the Big Thing and it got done first thing in the morning. But I felt as though I narrowly escaped a disaster. That wouldn't happen again, it was just too risky.

But it did. And soon The Big Thing wasn't getting done first thing in the morning, it was done in the afternoon. And then it was getting done late at night when I was really too tired to do it right. And then the inevitable happened. I put it off for two days, and I realized that the world still turned on it's axis just like it did when I put Big Things off for one day.

That started the avalanche of procrastination. I am now Master of Procrastination. I will put things off indefinitely, maybe just to see how long a thing can be put off. Will the world ever explode? I haven't reached that point yet.

But sometimes this isn't a good thing. Some Big Things can be put off with nothing happening at all, but other Big Things just can't. These Big Things have definite deadlines. I'm good with deadlines. I really am. Give me a deadline and I'll meet it. On the very second that you need it, it'll be done. It's risky, I know.

I think I've found the solution to my procrastinating ways. I need to prioritize again, but turn the list upside down. I have learned that I will do any manner of hard work in order to get out of doing something that needs to be done. I will clean out the refrigerator to get out of paying bills. I will exercise to get out of laundry. I will scrub bathtubs to get out of sewing. (Let's not psychoanalyze me here. I am well aware that I'm messed up.) So here's the plan. I will make a list again, and put things like dishes and vacuuming at the top of the list. Big Things will most certainly go at the bottom, and I will put off doing what is at the top of my list because it's got top billing. Big Things are bound to get done with this new strategy.

Wanna take bets on how long it is until I'm onto myself?

13 comments:

Fishsticks and Fireflies said...

I like the way you think! My own solution to feeling productive is to write a lengthy 'To Do' list and then do everything that IS NOT on the list. And then, in order to make myself feel productive, I go back to said list, write down everything I did, and then cross it off. I suspect that therapy isn't nearly as far away as I would like to think.

Lovin Mama said...

I can relate. I'm such a procrastinator. That is why I had you sew Goldie's shirt. I've been sewing since I was 6 years old, but seldom finish anything for my girls. Sad, huh.

Leanne said...

I'm the same. I like to think of myself as becoming more 'laid back' though, more patient and uh, nicer. Go with that.

Michelle said...

Soooo did yourself figure yourself out by lunchtime? What DID you get done? And I am SO a list person like that. In fact, I made myself a nice list on my way home tomorrow. And filling out Mister Man's BASC-II tomorrow is on it. Because it has a deadline and all. Oops.

mommaof4wife2r said...

i feel that way too...i wonder if it's a phase or if i'll just keep hiding? hmmm...let me know if you find yourself out, ok?

Viv said...

I used to be super organized and make lists...but they looked really unimportant written in crayon because I hide pens so well that even I can't find them. So I gave it up. Keep us posted on how it works, maybe you can be our motivation. :)

Burgh Baby said...

It's been 11 hours since you published this, and I'm pretty sure you've already caught on to your own scheme.

Andrea said...

Oh the things I need to do.....the list never ends. I am still not all the way unpacked from moving here five years ago!! LOL!! I make lists and never stick to them. I get so distracted when I clean. I go from one unfinished thing to the next. I might be a bit ADD when it comes to cleaning.

The easter bunny brought us some big lolly pops like that too!! Super huge and full of sugar!!

Karen said...

Motivation to get things done hits me like a bad cold. One day I wake up and I have to do certain things, others, it would take miracles to get me to do what needs to be done.

Let us know when you figure it out. I certainly could use some insight.

Domestic Goddess (In Training) said...

I had the exact same experience. Life didn't end when I put things off... that is, until I decided paying bills on time wasn't that crucial either. Life didn't end... but my phone line did.

Trannyhead said...

I perpetually have overdue bills not because I don't have the money to pay them, but because I'm just too damn lazy to do bills. I hate paying bills. It's so boooring!

CC said...

I used to be the queen of lists and motivation. Not so much anymore.

caramama said...

I think it's brilliant and I hope it works!

Currently, I'm reading blogs because I have a deadline of the end of the day and apparently I need to procrastinate even longer.