The Logic Is Simple But Not Simplistic
The constant battle between our today-self and tomorrow-self
Does any of it look familiar with so much to do but doing very little?
I have so many important things that I need to do. There is a resume that I need to make for my first real job application and you can easily guess that I have no prior work experience, and I am trying to get a job in a totally new field that has no connection to my entire graduation and post-grad degree. But instead of finally giving it a real shot, I am doing all the other unimportant work in my day like cleaning my room, binge-watching HIMYM, cursing my fate, so afraid to even have a look at it or even fill my initials in it and upload my picture there. Other things like making an important phone call to some relative or a friend regarding your work or hitting publish on that article that I wrote a week ago and now don’t want to publish.
Procrastination- the tendency to leave important tasks or things on tomorrow instead of doing them today. Why?? Because there is a constant struggle between our today-self and tomorrow-self. Our today-self wants different things than our tomorrow-self.
Our today-self is like our inner child who only wants to have fun and do things that give us instant gratification like watching TV or Netflix, playing video games, scrolling through Instagram reels, watching stories of the whole world on Snapchat even of the people you have no idea about.
Our tomorrow-self is like our inner adult who knows the power of every little step taken every day, who knows his responsibilities, what is important for his growth, who wants to get the things done on time, and who knows the greatest power of being consistent. This inner adult knows that if I take a single step every day like writing a single paragraph every day it’s gonna take to writing my entire book one day in no time.
This constant conflict between our inner child and inner adult keeps our minds juggling between these two and often it makes us overwhelmed to do anything at all.
Like, most people including me finally think to give life a fresh start, like waking up early in the morning, going for a run, having a proper schedule set for the day already, writing an article a day, hitting publish on the previously written ones instead of doubting them, reading, eating healthy, staying active and positive throughout the day which is only possible if we stay true to our schedule. This all stuff is well thought out by our inner adult who wants to get his life in order.
But then our inner child comes to play. Instead of getting up early in the morning, he tends to sleep late the night before because of the last-minute plans of his friends, no running at sunrise, everything gets delayed because of the waking up so late and then all positivity and zeal for the day get killed because you woke up at 11 am instead of 6 am. So, no creative ideas, no writing. The whole day gets completely bummed just because your inner child couldn’t say ‘no’ to his friends the night before.
The other important thing is perspective. Sometimes today-self look at the enormity of the things that we have to do. So, instead of focusing on one small step at a time, it gets overwhelmed and ignores how it needs to be done and tries to escape this situation by procrastinating and doing all the other unimportant things.
Focusing on the enormity of the task takes away the focus from the one simple thing that one small step needed to be taken at a time.
Laying one brick at a time has done consistently every day will form a complete wall in a month. Writing the second paragraph of an article is always easier than writing the first one. Running for 10 minutes daily or just walking will set the momentum slowly for future workouts.
As the momentum builds, things get easier.
So, whenever you want to procrastinate, think of taking just one step at a time and doing that thing today that makes your tomorrow a little easier. Every little effort counts. Apply this to the next day and then repeat it every day.