I thought I would discuss a little lesson that I preach, but sometimes forget to practice and was recently reminded of why I value its importance. The lesson is; if you take care of the little things in life, only then can you appreciate the big things. What do I mean by little things? Parking tickets, dentist appointments, school loans, clothes that need donating, motor vehicle hassles, items that need throwing out, ect…
I don’t mean that you are to fill your life with societal “shoulds.” If having an overly tidy home is not something you value, than by all means strike it from your to-do list. What I do mean is that if you have a bunch of little things that you value on your list, and they are nagging at you, that nagging prevents you from fully being present in all the other activities that you do. Over the past several months I kept telling myself that I had to deal with my retirement account. I would be at a happy-hour with friends or watching a movie with my husband and would think, I really need to get to that. Finally, the day came and I made the call I had been putting off for months. It turned out the entire process took 1.5 minutes! I had wasted hours of time thinking about how complicated it would be and that I would have to wait till I had hours and hours to deal with it. I realized I could have made that call months ago and not have wasted hours worrying about how much time it might have taken.
Why do we procrastinate? For many it’s because it’s unclear to us how long the task will take. That’s why we sometimes wait until the last minute, since it guarantees a limit as to how much time we can spend on something.
Solution: Chip away at it. Make a list of tasks you have been putting off and devote a realistic amount of time per day to each item. Even 5 minutes can do away with a task that you have already spent hours dreading.
Bigger tasks: For many of my clients, the beginning of a project or goal is the hardest part. They often contact me after they have beet themselves up for not moving forward fast enough. Often times, people need help talking bigger projects through, taking time to understand what the first steps might look like, and being able to predict how much time each step will take. Once we figure that out, then we can decide when we have time to take that first step.