Procrastination, it is not just a word. . .

Mama's Losin' It

I took eighth grade Honors Social Studies. I did not particularly care for Social Studies, but I earned good grades, so I was expected to take the more advanced class.

Our teacher was Mrs. Williams. It is quite possible that Mrs. Williams was the kindest woman I have ever met. She always had a warm smile, and a lilting voice.

Mrs. Williams made us work. Mrs. Williams was determined that her little group of honors students would not be tied to books day and night. She really tried to make US History come alive. She taught us the Charleston, we memorized the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution, we ate President Reagan’s favorite snack food, Jelly Bellies.

But Mrs. Williams had other things to teach us as well. She wanted to teach us life skills. We could not earn an A in her class just for performing well in class. We would have to do extra credit. AND we would have to perform in the school talent show. For the record, I did earn my A. I sang a solo: “Tomorrow” from Annie. It was almost more than I could handle as a shy, awkward 12 year old, but I did it. I did not die. But to this day I prefer to sing in a group rather than alone. Even narcissism has its limits!

One of the things I remember most was that Mrs. Williams made us memorize a different helpful saying for each exam. The one that sticks out in my mind is :”Do today what others won’t, so you can do tomorrow what others can’t.”

This was a great and worthy saying.

Sadly, I am cut from cloth that likes to procrastinate. All of the time.

Taxes: mailed on April 15. Every year. Except when April 15 is a Saturday, then they go out April 16.

Babies: all a week late, except the twins, who, were it not for a 38 week induction, would have been late as well.

Driver’s License: Finally earned at age 26.

Dinner: always a half hour later than the Rev. would like.

Bed making: five minutes before bedtime

Tying shoes: the little kids wear a lot of velcro

I just can’t seem to get the hang of doing things today and freeing up tomorrow. You see, I’m pretty sure that tomorrow will then have a whole other set of jobs to do. Getting stuff out of the way today really does not free up my tomorrow much.

I do work fairly well under pressure. I’m pretty sure that if I could buy a little self discipline I would work just fine under calm circumstances as well.
I’m glad that my salvation does not depend on me or my sense of timing.

4 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law, 5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. 6 And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” 7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God. Galatians 4:4-7 (emphasis mine)

I’m an heir of God.

That is pretty huge.

Does that mean I should just give up, and say that since my Father is “the big guy in charge” I don’t need to even try and improve my nasty procrastination habit?

By no means.

Does this mean that since my Father is “the big guy in charge” I can get away with my bad habit that negatively affects my entire family?

By no means.
Just like I TRY to help my kids find tools and systems to try and flush the procrastination gene from their systems, I too need to work on being a more organized, forward thinking person.

Oddly enough, adding more kids to our family did help. I don’t have time to space out on things. Babies (especially two at a time) won’t let me forget a meal!

I still let the family down. A lot.

I live with a very forgiving bunch.

Are you a procrastinator? Are you a great time manager? Chime in! I’d love to hear your time management tips, hints and techniques!

This post was written as part of Mama Kat’s Writer’s Workshop. Get your own weekly writing prompts and link up here!

3 Replies to “Procrastination, it is not just a word. . .”

  1. I happen to procrastinate too…..but in a different way. I can never predict when I will procrastinate or why I do it. No rhyme or reason.

    When I was in college the only reason I graduated with a 3.8 is because I was the kid who looked at the syllabus and said, Hey I can do all that THIS WEEKEND. And I did. I spent the rest of the semester goofing off and just showing up for class. Turned the paper in on the day it was due and made A’s almost all the time. It was awesome. The ONLY time in my life I haven’t procrastinated though. I think.

    1. Oh, gosh, procrastinate has become my middle name. And I only have me and the cats to take care of! And the cats won’t let me put off feeding them or cleaning their litter boxes (yes, plural; one of them has “issues” with a box and “they” say to have 1 box per cat plus 1, so I have 2 cats, 3 boxes, and it helps.)(I did a little better when my boys were still at home, but not by much!) I don’t know why – my mother wasn’t that way. It does feel like a sin against God. And unfortunately satan knows my weakness and targets me constantly. I seem to be in this vicious circle where I can’t stop and I can’t get out. I’m about 6 years away from retirement and am working on this, baby steps at a time, to be able to retire and be free to enjoy myself, to be organized, and serve God much better than I am right now. I wish I had the answers – I’d bottle it up and sell it! I find it does have a friend to support you. (Not group stuff – I really hate that.) Last winter I just COULD NOT get the last of the Christmas ornaments packed up and put away. I had taken the tree down but ornaments were all over a card table in the middle of a very small living room. So one night I invited a friend to come over and watch me pack them up. She just sat in a chair and talked to me. Since I SAID I was packing up, I was pretty much forced to. Sometimes just telling a specific person I’m going to do whatever helps, too. Some friendly nagging, too! My pastor has said that he feels like he has a bullseye painted on him – Lutheran Pastor: use for target practice and cause to sin! I feel kind of like that since the devil knows my weakness (which carries over into lots of areas of my life) and keeps on with the target practice. I understand what you mean about the babies not letting you put certain things off. I find I can work really well under an imminent deadline. But that’s probably not the best way to do things; that should be saved for an unusual situation. On the other hand, you have 2 babies and I think people with small children should get at least somewhat of a pass. Those babies are small for such a short time, and I think you should not worry about letting a few things slide while spending more time with them. Just don’t slide so far you don’t know where to start to dig yourself out. (Pot calling the kettle black!) I’ll pray for you when I pray for me about this.

  2. Oh my goodness, I needed to read this today! This is just confirmation that I need to find some time and space to get myself organized so that I can stop procrastinating! So glad you wrote this!

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