Procrastination – is it a dirty word?
“If you want something done right, ask a lazy man or a busy one.”
I have no idea who said that, but I’ve always been enamored of the sentiment; personally I think that when you can find someone who is both lazy AND busy, that’s probably the ideal person for your job. You see, I don’t really believe that procrastination is all that bad, or that those of us who engage in it regularly are any less than our motivated peers with their little checkmarks on their little to-do lists (who the hell does that anyway!!!!) that they keep on their nice, tidy, sparsely furnished desktops.
I will be the first one to admit to honing my procrastination skills from a young age… I’ve always liked to do what I wanted to do when I wanted to do it, and if that meant that things like cleaning my room, doing my piano practice (who the hell does that anyway!!!!), or making dinner for my brother when my mom was working took a backseat to sitting in bed reading a book, well I was all the better off for it. And truly, my brother did not starve. You can tell that from looking at him now, he hasn’t missed a meal in awhile.
I’m not against deadlines, nope, not at all.
I’m a great believer in deadlines, I mean, really, how else would we get anything done? It’s like going to a regatta – there’s a boat call time at the dock, and there’s a time that the boat has to leave the dock to get to the start line on time. I’m pretty much always at the start line on time, hell, many times I’m a couple of seconds early to the start line (who the hell does that!!!), especially in the first couple of races during a regatta, so it’s not that I can’t, don’t, or won’t get to where I’m supposed to be when it’s time to be there.
It’s just all that time in the middle. There are just so many other things that I’d rather be doing… watching Mrs. Maisel, reading the news, sitting around listening to someone else practice their piano, you name it. Without an actual deadline, I’m a non-starter, I fear. Well, actually I don’t fear that at all. I just don’t worry about it.
I can’t really handle people who are neurotic about times and timing and start now, let’s get going, we can’t wait to get to work on this. These are the people who end up spending perfectly good lounging, reading or daydreaming time redoing their work because they finished way too soon and had nothing better to do than keep on rethinking their original plans.
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I recently spent roughly 19 of 24 hours making a quilt from scratch. Yes, I do mean in the same 24 hour period, I spent approximately 19 hours cutting, piecing, sewing, quilting and binding (those are the steps for the non-quilters among you, dear readers) a bunch of disparate pieces of fabric – including an applique cat as the piece de resistance – in order to finish the project on time.
This time it wasn’t my fault. No, really, it wasn’t.
I honestly didn’t wait until the last minute to start on it, not this time; it was simply that our plans changed and while I thought I would have the entire weekend to do my little project, we ended up going out of town for a party and I had about 30 hours to get the darn thing done and in the mail or it wasn’t going to be a Christmas present but more of a New Year’s gift.
So I did it. I buckled down and hunkered in; my poor fingers were dry and cracked, and my back felt like I’d been working on a hunchback like my granny had when she was old. The finished product was marvelous! Seriously, I had no actual plan for doing it, just a few ideas that were bouncing around in my head trying to get some attention.
So there I was, busy, lazy, under the gun, with a deadline, and boom! Out came the most marvelous concoction, and we left town for the weekend, the quilt headed off to its’ new home, and everyone was happy.
Let me know if you need some help with your deadlines lol…