I love old sayings and proverbs, there is so much truth in them. One of my favorite sayings is “Procrastination is the thief of time.” To be honest, I don’t know why it’s one my favorites when I struggle with practicing its principle. I am notorious for postponing starts. Sometimes I think I like to revel in the dream process. Dreaming is fantastic. You envision the accomplishment much more than the work. You realize the joy of achievement without experiencing the pain of struggle. You rarely think of the pitfalls and possible predicaments that can capsize your dream. It’s not that you are oblivious to the challenges; it’s just not quite time to think about them. Not yet.
Of course, the reasons for not starting are never couched in charming language. Rather, they are littered with excuses of why starting later is better than starting now. So the conversation, at least with me, goes something like this: “I don’t have the resources I need”; “I am waiting for someone to help me”; “I am tired”; “I am just not in the mood”; or, my favorite: “tomorrow.” Have you ever had such conversations with yourself? If so, you were procrastinating and you might be a procrastinator. Procrastination is “putting off for tomorrow what you can do today.” I told you I liked old sayings.
Procrastination creates the illusion that you have more time. More time to plan. More time to meander in dreams. Procrastination creates the impression that there is more time for you to seize opportunities, or that prospects will always be there for the taking. It ignores competition and the strenuous task of making dreams a reality. It dismisses the fact that you are getting older. It’s truly the thief of time, and losing time will never benefit you.
Most of all, procrastination doesn’t benefit your dream. There is something about a dream needing the momentum its incubation period provides: a delay kills it. And dreams are usually envisioned within the zeitgeist of the time. Therefore, dreams need to be breed in their contemporary context to be fully appreciated. They rely on the connections that social norms generate. Dreams have to be fresh. In other words, when you procrastinate, you run the risk that your ideas can become outdated and obsolete.
So, we have to practice –Starts; that is, to make starting a habit. To get up out the blocks and go. To “strike while the iron is hot.” While dreams are important when setting goals, they mean nothing unless you start. And, I have found that your dreams are not finite. They blossom with every step, every initiation, every start. Why are we sitting on plans and ideas we have had for years? And how much longer are we willing to experience disappointment, sadness or even jealousy because we see our friends making moves we should have made years ago? Do you realize that your inability to start has stunted your dreaming process? Dreams are like stepping stones. Its only when you take a step that you realize there is more for you to accomplish, more to contribute, much more to dream.
Ask yourself two questions as you practice starts: 1) What’s preventing me from starting? 2) How much time do I really have?
You won’t realize the potential of your creativity nor journey towards your purpose unless you start.