Paralyzed Procrastinators (and a Giveaway!)

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Hey local gals: I wanted to give a shout out to my new friends I met at my event at the DeWitt School PTA last night. What a fabulous bunch of folks! Also, for any of you Mid-Michigan gals who are interested in some support in the battle of the bulge, I’ll be leading a Made to Crave group that will meet at my church (link on the left sidebar) for seven weeks beginning Monday night, February 28th. This study is designed to go along with whatever healthy eating plan you choose and will enable you to find the ‘want to’ in losing weight. For more info and to see the clever book trailer, click here. If you want info about our local group, email me at [email protected]

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Procrastination:

The act of delaying;

Repeated inactivity resulting in something being put off until a later time;

To fail to accomplish something, especially out of habitual carelessness or laziness;

To postpone needlessly.

Do you procrastinate?

Have projects you’ve been wanting to get around to tackling but just can’t seem to find the energy to do?

Are there cluttered closets, unwritten thank you notes from Christmas, disorganized storage rooms, filthy shower stalls or a fridge that hasn’t been cleaned for so long now you need a hazardous materials suit and a chisel to get at it?

Why do we procrastinate?

Laziness?

Sometimes.

Boredom (we’d rather play than work)?

Yep.

The task seems too overwhelming?

Uh-huh.

Or how about this one…..we are paralyzed by perfection. I mean we don’t want to do the thing unless we can do the thing perfectly.

So there sits the thing…..undone.

How about we pinky promise that this weekend we will carve out a slice of time to get off of our duffs and bravely venture into the frustrating world of our persistent procrastination.

Here are a few tips that have helped me.

~ Break it down into bite-size chunks. When the chore seems insurmountable, take it one step at a time. Maybe you won’t be able to totally re-organize your entire pantry, clean out the fridge and freezer, sort through and re-align all of your dishes and cooking utensils and spit shine the floors, countertops and appliances this weekend, but I’ll bet you could at least tackle the kitchen junk drawer. Or pick one of the aforementioned projects to accomplish.

Baby steps now…

~ Next set a timer and tell yourself you’ll stop when it rings. Yep, experts assert that if you set a timer for just 20-30 minutes and dive into you task, after a few minutes the momentum you feel by seeing progress can be all the push you need to find the desire to finish the thing entirely.

~ Find a friend. You surely must know a fellow procrastinator. Buddy up. Go to her house for an hour or two to help her tackle a nasty or frustrating chore. Then, swing by a coffee shop, re-fuel and head to your place to work on your project for a while.

~ Reward yourself. Promise yourself that after the task is complete, you’ll treat yourself to something fun. Rent a movie, curl up with a magazine and cup of something steamy, or buy yourself that cute pair of earrings you wanted the other day.

~ Be patient. Your home didn’t get cluttered in a day and it won’t de-clutter itself overnight. But with a little planning, some “gumption and elbow grease” as my momma used to say, and a few weekends, you can finally begin to kiss procrastination goodbye!

Now for the giveaway:

Since I firmly believe that women often aren’t willing to have others over for some good ‘ole fashioned hospitality due to their procrastination projects staring them in the face and making them feel defeated, I want to give away the following to three of you who leave a comment this weekend (yes, I’m feeling generous!)

~A personalized, signed copy of my book A Life That Says Welcome; Simple Ways to Open Your Heart & Home to Others. This book is not only on hospitality, it also has chapters on dejunking, cleaning, decorating and tons of easy, crowd-pleasing recipes. Oh, and it also tells the tale of my marrying into a gourmet family full of interior decorators, Bed & Breakfast owners and fancy cooks…..when I barely knew how to boil water!

~ And a $10 Target gift card so you can purchase either supplies for your project or a little reward for yourself.

So, here is the dealio…..leave a comment telling us the procrastination project you most want to tackle. Three of you will be chosen at random by my random integer selector (my boys give me a random number! I have no clue how to use random integer selectors so I improvise!).

Comment away….. I’m off….um….er….well…to write those Christmas thank you notes. Slightly embarrassing coming from someone who speaks and writes on organization, but hey…I’m just keepin’ it real people.

Happy Weekend!

122 Comments

  1. I have procrastinated cleaning out my spare bedroom. The “catch all” room. Its a MESS! The problem isnt that I don’t know where to start. Its that when I get started its going to be a L-O-N-G project!

  2. I want to clean out my closets, redo a bedroom where plaster is falling off wall it is a real mess up there. No one can see it ao it has not been a priority.

  3. Procrastinating – my heart comes first. In regards to hospitality, I need to address cleaning my carpet, sounds crazy, but my carpet is old and needs attention, I whince at having people over because of it. I just realized that I’ve forgotten how important hospitality is in my home, just as it is, not in a perfect state. I’m afraid I’ve let some missed opportunities to minister (and for my kids to) because of this.

  4. Gosh, where do I begin? Actually I have started trying to organize my craft/scrapbooking supplies as a new years resolution. Unfortunately it is so overwhelming because I’ve let it go so long. Now I’ll try your “baby step” approach. Next I want to tackle my recipes!O My, paper, paper & more paper. I would love to win your book. Thanks for the chance. Blessings.

  5. My dining room/study. Papers everywhere… I get hit by panic at the though and it is stopping us from having people in for meals which I know isn’t right.

  6. I have boxes of magazines, books, clothes, knick-knacks, etc. to go through- just the thought of it overwhelms me.

  7. I have been procrastinating sleep. Instead of sleeping when I need, I work myself harder to find anything to do, BESIDES sleeping.

  8. I keep putting off my Grandmother’s cookbook project. I have her old “cookbook” that she put together when she was living. I am copying all of the recipes that I want to keep. I have had the book for months and have only typed up five of them. This is a great resource to have and I would like to share the typed copies with my cousins.

  9. I am procrastinating cleaning my garage and my office and my photo albums! and I used to be a Creative memories consultant! Found you Karen from Lysa’s website–I totally enjoy your blog and all you share! I’d love your new book. Thanks!

  10. I have procratinated about clearing the table off where all the junk mail piles up – now it’s a mountain of junk mail!

  11. Oh bummer! I feel totally busted even admitting it.
    I’m a procrastinator when it comes to cleaning stuff out! Stuff I will never ever use again…I just let it live there taking over all my space.
    The worst part? Is I’m a total neat freak!
    I don’t like clutter or stacks yet I’ll let my drawers and closets fill up!

  12. I definitely procrastinate a lot. Sometimes because I’m lazy, but more often because it is overwhelming and don’t know where to start. THANKS for th e hints and motivation to get started.

  13. Yep, my name is Lisa and I am a procastinator. The reward thing has never been a big motivator personally for me. However the two things that have helped me improve — a little — is breaking down some huge project into chunks and allowing myself to feel accomplished if I did get a part done instead of beating up on myself for not “doing it all”. Also a HUGE help actually has been setting a time to do something. So instead of thinking I don’t have two hours to work on a project and therefore won’t even start it, now I’ll set myself time that I feel is reasonable and be amazed at how much I actually can do in say 15 minutes. Trust me, it works for the perfectionist procrastinator. Thanks for entering me in the giveaway Karen.

  14. I am a working mother of 2 and I have found that not only my home, but also my classroom have become very difficult to keep organized lately. I am trying to chip away at things but I have become very overwhelmed by it all.

  15. It’s funny…I am usually on top of everything, except for things I have to do on the phone and things that have to do with money–like taxes…even if I sset a deadline (works on everything else) I find a way to procrastinate. I like taking little bites of big projects–that really works for me

  16. I need to sort through the four or five laundry baskets full of papers and stuff sitting in my storage closet. It is so true that if I just do it a little at a time it will be done sooner than waiting to do it all at once. Thanks for the encouragement, Karen!

  17. I have a bunch of little things that add up in the end… like laundry… then cleaning out my car… then putting toys away… making sure my work stuff is all caught up. When it’s all done it feels great but I hate that feeling that weighs you down when it needs to be done! Any advice on how to overcome this procrastination would be wonderful!

  18. I am definitely a procrstinator. My reasons are probably a combination of all you mentioned. Sometimes I’m just lazy. Othertimes I would just like to do what I WANT to do and sometimes, I am overwhelmed, I just don’t know where to start. And then there are the times I start, but my perfectionism comes in and I quit before I’m done. Thank you for the chance to win your book. Have a wonderful God-filled weekend!

    [email protected]

  19. Hi Karen,

    Embarrassing, but I’m just being honest here…
    I’m procrastinating on starting a healthy eating plan and exercise. I’m even reading “Made to Crave” and watching the webcasts on Monday.

    I’m also procrastinating on writing the book I believe God wants me to write.

  20. Cleaning my bathroom or organizing the pile that has hidden my computer table would be lovely things to accomplish this weekend. For now, I’m off to tackle the kitchen.

  21. Renting a house after owning one for over 30 years. I’ve lived here for a year now and about all I have accomplished is curtains at the windows.

  22. It’s time to downsize my empty nest. Cleaning out all the memories from raising three daughters has been a huge challenge. Hope to put the house on the market this spring.

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