Stop Procrastinating

Trust me, I’m an expert

I am very good at procrastinating.  In fact, you could say I have a penchant for putting things off, a proclivity for postponing…I’m a stalling savant, a doctor of dithering, the duke of delay…

ANYWAY, what I’m trying to say is that I have some experience in this subject.  My experience has taught me that when I stop procrastinating I get more done (duh), feel better about myself, and waste less time.

Why do you procrastinate?

One word: FEAR.

Fear of failure is a common cause of procrastination.  For some people, failure becomes so terrifying that rather than trying and failing they’d prefer not to try at all.  This unhelpful belief is often tied to perfectionism or unrealistically high expectations.

Conversely, sometimes people fear success.  You can’t stop procrastinating because if you actually succeed then more will be required of you.  Or perhaps success will garner you unwanted attention.  In either case, success increases the pressure to succeed again, which can discourage people from starting at all.

But what if you’re not afraid and you’re still procrastinating?  I’m not frightened by a pile of clean laundry, but you’d better believe I’m going to put off folding it.

Sometimes people procrastinate a task simply because it’s boring.  Boredom has been shown to stress the body in similar ways that sadness and anxiety do.  That’s why your 8-year-old doesn’t say, “I’m bored” with a smile and a lilt in his voice.  He moans, “I’m booooooorrrrred!” because it sucks to do boring things.

Other people procrastinate a task because they lack the skills required to complete it.  This one is often related to the fear of failure.

Some people put things off as a form of rebellion.  Dad wants you do become a doctor and you want to pursue a music career.  You conveniently postpone studying for the MCAT, resulting in a poor score.  “Sorry, Dad. I guess I’m not cut out for medical school.” Read More →

Six words that can save your marriage

“It means a lot to me…”

These magical words can go far to save your marriage from stagnation or decline.

People want to live meaningful lives.  We want to make a difference at our job, in our community, at our church, in our families, and to our friends.  We want to matter.

That’s why you feel awesome when your husband or wife says to you, “It means a lot to me when you do the dishes.”  You had an impact on that person by doing the dishes.  You matter to that person.

When you forget what matters

Marriages struggle for lots of reasons, but complacency can be especially noxious.  When you take your spouse for granted you’re taking a big risk.  Our desire to matter is powerful and it makes us vulnerable to those we love.

There is no better feeling than when you make yourself vulnerable to a loved one and they handle you with care. (Except maybe eating a box of girl scout cookies.  That feels pretty good.) Read More →

Parenthood: Why You Are Always on the Toilet

“You wanna know why your father spends so much time on the toilet? Because he’s not sure he wants to be a father.” – Louis C.K.

Parenting is hard

I think I was sitting on the toilet, my legs just starting to fall asleep, the first time I saw this video. I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry.

I love my three sons desperately. They’re curious, funny, and smart…and they’re my fault. That is to say, I created them (I believe their mother was also involved). Sometimes I like to remind my oldest of that fact. Read More →

How to Fix Insomnia

I Cant Sleep!

I’m lying in bed after a hard day. I’ve got another hard day waiting for me tomorrow and I NEED to sleep. So why am I not sleeping yet?

I check the bright, blue numbers on my alarm clock; 11:30 PM. Have I really been in bed for an hour? Huh, feels like 4 hours.

I’ve got so many things to do tomorrow. Maybe if I run through them in my mind again I’ll be able to sleep . . . Nope, that didn’t work. I wish someone would just knock me out!

Does this sound familiar? If so, you probably have insomnia. Do you want to learn how to fix insomnia? Keep reading. Read More →

How to Manage Anxiety

 

Everybody experiences worry, fear, stress, nervousness, and tension at some point in their lives. It’s natural to fret over a test score, stress out over bills, or worry about relationships.

So how do you know if your anxiety has escalated from normal worry to dysfunctional anxiety? Here are a few telltale signs:

  • Do you worry about almost everything?
  • Do you find it hard to control your worry?
  • Do you find yourself worrying about things that other people do not?
  • Do you feel restless, tense, or on edge most of the day?
  • Do racing thoughts regularly keep you up at night?
  • Are you often irritable?
  • Do people makes comments about your anxiety? (e.g., “You’re too high strung.”)
  • Does your anxiety have a significant impact on your work, school, and/or social life?

If you answered yes to many of these questions then you might have a problem with anxiety. You wouldn’t be alone if you do. The National Institute of Mental Health estimates that 18% of the U.S. adult population suffers from an anxiety disorder. That’s 40 million people! The good news is that you can control anxiety. Here are some practical methods to help you manage anxiety. Read More →