Stop Procrastinating…it’s Nothing to Do With Ducks
Procrastination…It’s one of the three main challenges blocking our success and it’s on the rise. I’ve been spending a lot of time on this lately.
Amongst the research I’ve also been pondering the connection between procrastination, confidence and overwhelm but I think we’ll have to explore that another day.
Getting my ducks in a row.
Publishing my first book back in November was meant to be the answer to my challenges, putting a sales funnel together, helping people with where they’re at. It has been a great experience and also a lesson for me.
At the launch I knew that wasn’t the end. More work needed before success would follow but I can recall thinking, “Finally my ducks are lining up!”
What a ride it’s already been. Over a hundred people came to the launch. What a start. I was pumped to get Finding Your Business Mojo out there after all this time, finally. The process really pushed my boundaries – getting things right in the lead up with the pre-launch planning and promotion.
The event went off really well. The speeches, the pats on the back and the, “congratulations on a wonderful book”. These we’re all great confidence boosts.
Surely all I had to do was to wait for people to line up at my door… Right?
However, people didn’t come breaking the door down…What?
I thought the ducks were lined up.
So I waited a little, after all, it was a huge effort getting to that point.
While waiting, I started to think, “What if blah blah blah…” And I waited. And I started to think a little more…
Funny thing was, the thinking started to bring some doubts. Strangely “the more I thought about it, the bigger those doubts got”. The doubts started to get to me. I wondered if there really was gold in that book. Were people just being polite or nice to me?
I even started to ignore it when people who read it said anything positive. So when someone would say, “Hey it’s great, easy to read and full of gems.” I’d convert that to, yeah, it’s a bit of fun and a couple of diamonds between the dirt.
While I continued waiting, those “ducks just weren’t lining up”.
Here’s the secret.
“Everything imagined is real”
How often do you hear someone say, “I’ve just got to get my ducks in a row” as the key reason not to get started doing exactly what you and they know, they should be doing.
The real challenge is, that getting moving is the only thing that will get your ducks in a row. The only time I’ve seen ducks in a line before they move is at a shooting gallery at Luna Park.
A colleague called yesterday. He’s been going through some family challenges, a lot going on and it’s been a particularly time consuming and energy draining time for him. He’s got a coaching background and he mentioned that some of the stuff just seemed so real, even though he knew he’d been making a mountain out of a mole hill.
“It is real”, I told him. Stunned there was no reply, just silence down the phone, then “No Kevin, I appreciate that, it’s just the stuff I’ve made up”. “Yeah, but I’ve got tinnitus” I explained, another long pause so I continued, “I hear ringing…A LOT of the time. I appreciate that nobody else hears it but that doesn’t make it less real.”
There was a silence for a moment while he was taking this in.
Eventually he started to talk, his voice a little wavy, “Thanks mate. Things have been really tough with all that’s been going on and I was starting to doubt stuff, well me actually. I know I’ve been procrastinating and that puts it all in perspective nicely”.
Let the ducks follow you.
Getting over stuff isn’t about ignoring it. It’s about acknowledging what is going on and working with and through it.
Just don’t let your problem become the reason not to keep moving. The reason you put off the important things for the convenient.
Focus on the right stuff.
Simple strategies are always best and establishing good habits from them is the fastest way to success.
So I developed a checklist:
- Keep the important front of mind.
- Break each project up into smaller milestones.
- Then break that down into steps.
- Watch for evidence (get your partner to help you) of the time you zone out.
If you want to know if you’re really on track or just stuffing around, ask that blunt, yet honest mate. (if you don’t yet have one, get one)
They’ll tell you.
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