I’ve noticed that time doesn’t feel the same for everything.
Listening to my toddler throw a fit feels excruciatingly long, while a rare hour of free time passes in the blink of an eye.
Being stuck on a cross country car ride with a van full of kids for a day feels like it takes forever, but a weekend getaway with my husband passes in a snap.
Sometimes I delay doing things that seem to me as though they will take a long time and be terrible (such as cleaning out my van or doing the mountain of dishes).
I think they will be miserable and take forever, so I procrastinate.
More than just chores, I procrastinate a lot of things.
I’ll make lists of all the things that need done - phone calls, texts, registrations, deadlines, projects, and the like. Then I look at the massive list, think about how much time it will take to get it all done, and how it feels impossible, and (surprise surprise), I feel overwhelmed.
I think it will take such a long time to get all of it done and I dread it.
What happens next is a shocker - it takes a long time.
Why? I procrastinate, avoid, start but then get overwhelmed, and generally waste a lot of time feeling overwhelmed and stressed.
I thought that this was just how it had to go. There was a huge to do list, therefore I had to feel overwhelmed. The list was long, so it had to take a long time to accomplish it.
Then I learned that time is relative.
Time lengthens or shortens based on my thoughts.
What actually takes the long time, is worrying and stressing about the to do list.
Avoiding the list, while dreading the list, is actually what eats up all of my time.
Once I actually determine to do a task, it doesn’t take very long. The proportion of time spent actually doing a task versus dreading and avoiding it is skewed in the wrong direction.
The only reason that things take me so long and are so miserable, is because of the conversation going on in my head about them.
Now that I know this, I created a strategy to overcome it. I’ll be sharing it in full in my upcoming course. Here is a simplified version.
1. Make the list
2. Decide which things can go (just say no!)
3. List the time for each task
4. Set a deadline
5. Choose the mindset
6. Get to work
Lists that took me days in the past, now get done quickly and without dread.
What was really holding me back and creating the result of my to do list taking forever, was my mindset. Thinking that it would be super hard and take a long time made it all come true.
Remember, time is relative.
It can be over in the blink of an eye.
When I think that my list will be done in a snap, time goes quickly.
I believe I can get my list done fast now, and I stop all of the mind drama, and guess what? I do it fast!
Getting the list done is easy if I let my brain just get to work, instead of holding myself back with worry, stress, and overwhelming thoughts.
What are you procrastinating today?
Just go do it!
Time is relative.
P.S. Did you know that it's ok for other people to not like you? No Really.