We all know what it is. We have all done it. It is of course procrastination – the art of postponing something needlessly, out of habitual carelessness or laziness. For all creators out there, I would add ‘out of fear’, ‘out of doubt’ or even ‘out of perfectionism’; take your pick.
The irony? While writing this post, I should be writing my novel. There are many advocates of blogging out there and probably just as many who are opposed to it under the pretext that it is yet another distraction. But I am digressing.
Procrastination is not an easy concept to comprehend. I can still hear my mum berating me for not doing this, not finishing that and despite having been away from home for over six years, WhatsApp and Skype convey the message just fine. But what really lies behind it all?
Procrastination is not all laziness and carelessness. It is a deep-seated murmur inside of us, like a constant crackling noise interfering with who we really are and what we are capable of.
At times, it fades into the distance and I am amazed at how much I can get done! Others, it gets so loud I am forced to stop and do what I do best – self-sabotage.
This includes scrolling through Facebook, watching an episode of something or other, gawking at YouTube videos and I will include a personal favourite : eating chocolate when I am on a diet. A classic!
I have been working on my novel for almost a year. It has been the most incredible roller-coaster of ideas and now that I am nearing the end of my first draft, I find that I am slowing down. My pace is not what it used to be and my daily word count goal is rarely reached. And yet, my motivation and passion haven’t decreased, they are just as strong, if not stronger than in the earlier stages.
So why I am doing this to myself? Because once it is finished, this will probably be my very first achievement. My degree wasn’t fulfilling enough. My graduation day, my piano diplomas, all those concerts, my current clients, the new spaces I create, they all bring a smile to my face but a smile isn’t enough to get you through life. You need accomplishment.
And I now realise that finishing The Sands of Time will be the accomplishment I have been waiting and fighting for all my life. That is what lies behind it for me.
Do you procrastinate often? Do you have a secret on how to fight against it?