Let’s be honest—we all procrastinate. Some of us might put off overcoming an unhealthy habit that we’ve struggled with for years; and others of us may have a long list of work projects on our desk that never seem to get done.
Instead of doing it today, we put it off until tomorrow. But when tomorrow comes, we don’t do it. Tomorrow turns into next week, next month, and—eventually—never.
Sound familiar? Is there a way you can stop procrastinating and start accomplishing? Yes. First, discover why you put things off.
People tend to procrastinate for three reasons:
First, you may procrastinate simply because you neglect using your time wisely. The Bible encourages us to work hard. Proverbs 6:6 says, “Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise!” To get more work done, one way is to keep track of where your time goes each day—you’ll see where you’re wasting time.
Second, you might procrastinate to avoid dealing with difficult emotions. Feeling stuck? Ask yourself: “How am I feeling about doing this task?” Identifying the emotion you’re feeling— sadness, anger, loneliness, fear—helps you understand why you’re stuck.
Third, you may procrastinate because you refuse to accept responsibility. Sure, there’s a time to delegate. But there’s also a time to take responsibility. James 4:17 puts it this way, “Remember, it is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it.” Ask the Lord to reveal any areas where you are responsible for what you’ve been neglecting. And if you’re really feeling bold, ask a friend or family member what you’ve been putting off!
Finally, to help you figure out any underlying issues causing you to procrastinate, try this exercise. On a sheet of paper, make three columns: “neglect,” “avoid,” and “refuse.” List as many things as you can that you have been putting off that fall into each category. Look at every category; decide which area you struggle with the most.
Do you neglect to manage your time? Are you avoiding difficult emotions? Is there an area you refuse to accept responsibility for? Understanding why you put things off will help you stop procrastinating and start accomplishing.God has a purpose for your life! “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” – Ephesians 2:10
If you need help with this, or know someone who does, call at 800-NEW-LIFE today, or visit us at newlife.com.