What Are You Putting Off?

I never thought of myself as a “procrastinator”.  Towards the end of my career as a grant writer, I found I worked better under pressure – does it make me a procrastinator?  Probably.

Working at home in my direct sales business, I find I am procrastinating.  I put off things, mostly the things which are out of my comfort zone.  I know there are times when we need to delay things – life happens, right?  But the truth is, procrastination is one of the biggest causes of stress in our lives.  I don’t know about you BUT stress makes me re-think my goals and my action steps which makes me stay in my comfort zone which keeps me STUCK!  Do you see where I am going here?

Think about the things you hold off doing….

As busy women, there are things in your life you know need to get done. They are usually not even difficult tasks but in our minds we have made them more difficult and as a result we never get started.  Instead, we do everything we can think of – wash dishes, organize files, surf the Internet, or check e-mail—rather than the things we actually need to do IN our business.  I’m always in my office yet I find myself working on my business and not in it.  Being busy but not with things which will make me money or get me more business.  More procrastination which ultimately drains my energy and wastes precious time.

“Procrastination is the bad habit of putting off until the day after tomorrow what should have been done the day before yesterday,” ~ Napoleon Hill

There are actually two solutions to procrastination.  Sounds so simple, right?  I was just listening to the AMAZING Desiree Wolfe who talked about this same thing!

#1.  Drop the goal or project, and don’t do it.

Is this really what you want to do?  Are you willing to admit defeat before you even make a serious attempt at trying.  My newest HUGE goal is to earn a FREE trip to Maui courtesy of Thirty One.  Yup, it is the Leadership Incentive Trip for 2019!  Believe it or not, it is the sales goal which has me stumped more than the number o qualify recruits.  Weird, right?  Yes, I squirreled.  One month down with 11 more to go and the inner gremlins are already having a field day.  I have set my goal and I am not giving up… So this is not an option for me

2. Exercise some discipline, and just go ahead and do it.

Since procrastination is sometimes a sign you don’t want or need to do the thing you’re dreading, then Option #1 is a good choice for you.  Now this doesn’t apply to paying filing taxes (you have until April 17th), paying bills, or picking kids up from school.  Then there are times when procrastination is a sign of perfectionism, stubbornness, or lack of self-discipline.  In these cases, you have the power to change.  Are you in this category? If so,  Option 2 is your best choice.  The bottom line is not to make the task or project a big deal. Break it into smaller pieces and just get started.  Sometimes easier said then done, right?

So what is it you need to do?  Don’t wait for inspiration to hit you — just start! I always want to wait for the “right time”.  Is there ever a perfect time to step out of your comfort zone?  You don’t have to feel like doing something to do it. Once you are int the process of starting, your mood develops and the inspiration comes. And even if it doesn’t, the feeling of relief after completing a project you’ve been dreading is well worth it.

My challenge to you:

Stop procrastinating. Get it done!

Share with us what you been putting off? What step will you take today to move forward?

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Does Perfect Spoil Your Dream?

“A successful life is often expensive. It will cost you something to become a champion.Time. Energy. Focus.” – Mike Murdock

January 10th, I made the decision to leave my part-time job and pursue my business full-time.  Was (or is) it scary?  YES!  Having a regular paycheck is now my responsibility, not my employer.

Over the last few weeks, I have seen MAJOR changes in my business. Parties/ Hostess I didn’t think would turn out have, customers have been placing retail orders, and I have potential new recruits.   Do I think it is anything special I did? NO! Do I believe God is working in my life? YES. There is one other thing which has changed – I have accepted I am NOT perfect and I don’t NEED to be in order to work my business and be a success.  Yes, I said it!  For some, I am sure it is a no-brainer BUT for me, it is an ongoing process.

I know I sabotage my success waiting for everything to be PERFECT. The perfect time.  The perfect vendor event. The perfect hour to make calls.  I know I am not alone in this, right?  You do it too.  Did you realize those thoughts are de-railing your business?

How often have you thought?

  • I’ll make reach out to my contacts as soon as I have the perfect (or the right) script.
  • I’ll book my first parties as soon as I learn how to do a party.
  • I’ll start sharing the business opportunity as soon as I know what to say.
  • I can’t work if my office is unorganized so I’ll clean it first.

Let’s be honest, we have all said it, thought it or done it right? Here are some tips to help you reach those dreams and allow yourself to be “Im-prefect”.

1. Does practice really make perfect?

The truth is, even with the right words and scripts, you’re going to mess it up a number of times before you’re really good.  And just when you think you are really good – you will mess up.  Accept it and move on!

Practice = better.
More practice = good.
More practice = great!
Did you see the PERFECT anywhere?

2. If it was easy – everyone would be doing it.

Easy is not the path to true happiness in any area of our lives. A great marriage is hard work. Raising great kids is really hard work. Earning a degree is hard work, and so is building a solid, successful direct sales business. WOW! I bet no one told you that when you signed up to be a consultant did they?  It may be easy at times but then the “pink” cloud will burst.   Things will be a little tougher and you may need to work a little harder. It will be worth it in the end – every bit of effort will pay off.

“If we do the things we need to do when we need to do them, the day will come when we can do the things we want to do when we want to do them.” – Zig Ziglar

3. The ducks probably won’t cooperate.

Resist the urge for perfection. Perfection is just another word for procrastination.  Don’t wait until all your ducks are in a row. because the truth is the pieces won’t ever all be in the perfect place. We won’t ever know everything we need to know to do it perfectly.

What have I done differently to make a difference in my business?

FIRST – I trust I am on the path God wants me to be on. I am not looking to be perfect or to be in the spotlight. That is not my God-sized dream. My dream is to have a self-sufficient business which provides my husband and I (and my family) with the extras – having financial freedom and being able to travel when we want. When I let go of the woulda, shoulda, coulda, and trust in God – things happen.

SECOND – I am stepping out of my comfort zone and trying.  Sounds easy, right?  I am learning to “bless and release” when negative things happen then keep moving forward.  If I stop trying, failure will be the option and my goal is for success.

Are you looking to be perfect? Is it affecting YOUR business? Share your thoughts with us..

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Procrastination And Perfectionism Go Hand-in-Hand

 

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Thank you Glynnis Whitwer and Proverbs 31.com for today’s message…

Years ago, I naively thought I was decent at decorating, until people started re-doing my efforts. Whether at church or work, if I was assigned the setup of a table of any kind—snacks, desserts, book sales—someone would come along behind me and re-arrange the items.

It happened so often, that I just stopped trying. I’d laugh it off, and ask to be assigned something else. It’s hard to face a weakness. And because I so desperately want to be good at decorating, it hurts.

When I take a step back, I can see that my standard for decorating is ridiculous. I’m comparing my home, my income, my resources and my style to others who are truly gifted in this area. Logically I should see those comparisons and my personal expectations aren’t fair, and give myself a break.

Only there’s this critical voice inside me that says admit defeat and give up. In a quiet little hiss it says things like, “You’ll never be happy with the results … someone will come along behind you and do it better … you aren’t artistic … if you can’t do it well, just forget it.”

That voice has a name: Perfectionist. And it’s not my friend.

One would think that the desire to do things well is an asset. And it is. But perfectionism isn’t the pursuit of excellence. It’s the pursuit of perfection.

Excellence is possible is some things; perfection is possible in nothing.

Excellence pushes us to do our best; perfectionism pushes us to be the best.

Perfectionism is the enemy of learning and growing and enjoying areas of life where we haven’t achieved mastery. And we procrastinate addressing those areas for fear of feeling unsatisfied, critical, and discouraged.

Procrastination and perfectionism go hand-in-hand for me. And one of my most memorable bouts with perfectionism was when I was writing a book on procrastination.

It was amazing what other tasks I chose to do rather than write. They were all things I’d procrastinated, but apparently dreaded less than writing that book.

I scheduled a medical screening I’d put off for years, made a copy of a car key that required a special locksmith with a special machine, and decided to start excising again.

But write? I was paralyzed by the thought of it. Seriously, why did I tackle a topic that only very intelligent people with lots of degrees and initials behind their name wrote on? I’m no expert!

The more I researched the topic, the more I became so consumed over what to include in the book, that I couldn’t start. Visions of people thinking they’d wasted their money just about made me sick.

Then it didn’t help that I’m friends with someone who has had three books hit the New York Times best-seller list. And although I know I shouldn’t compare my success with hers, the impossibility of writing a best seller made me want to call my publisher to quit multiple times.

Finally, I had to admit I wasn’t going to write a perfect book. And I’m not the perfect person to write on this subject. But I have been called by God to do it. So, since He is MUCH smarter than me, I decided I better sit down at the computer, ask for His help, and start writing, trusting God to lead me.

This was not a one-and-done conversation I had with myself. Each chapter, I had to face that same high expectation and those same fears. What if I left something important out? What if I quoted a study that was debunked a year later, only I didn’t know it? What if a psychologist reads this and posts an angry comment on Amazon?

The perfectionist bully taunted me with dire consequences throughout the entire process of writing this book.

So how did I actually get it done? I chose to trust God.

I know that sounds simple, but it’s really true. Years ago God challenged me to trust Him, not just say I trusted Him. What a difference it makes.

Perfectionism directed my focus on the end result. But when I took my eyes off the results and put them on God, perfectionism lots its grip on me.

No longer was the burden of the results squarely on my shoulders.

Just knowing God won’t let me down gave me courage to start. And He’ll do the same for you. Here is some truth from His Word:

Psalm 9:10, “Those who know your name trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you.”

Isaiah 42:16, “I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.”

When we are faced with a challenging assignment, one where we doubt our ability to do it perfectly, we can choose to trust God will not fail us. Assured of God’s faithfulness and His love, we can proceed with confidence, giving the work our best efforts.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Your Best Intentions

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We all have good intentions, right?  You say you want to do something but you don’t.  I don’t necessarily mean those really BIG things that you dream about; I am talking about those obtainable dreams.  Maybe things don’t happen the way you want for a multitude of reasons.  We have all been there, done that and probably have an unwanted t-shirt.

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You start out with a clear vision or plan.  Maybe it is a new kitchen (that’s one of mine), the next promotion or a full calendar (this one too).  Maybe it is keeping your house clean – yes, I have grown attached to my dust bunnies.

You have or know the list of action steps necessary to make it happen.  A plan written out and maybe it is even scheduled on your planner. Then STUFF  happens – you procrastinate, fear creeps in, you get side tracked with life and the next thing you know that clear vision is a muddy mess.

Yes, I know that it may seem a little silly to compare DREAMS with cleaning the house but everyone’s vision is different.  So no matter what your vision is I want you to consider doing these steps:

Step #1: Write down what you really want and why you want it. Are you looking to please someone else or is it something you really want?  Set aside the doubts, the fears and the daily concerns.  YOU and only you have the power to light the fire and get yourself moving.

Step #2: Set aside time to quietly and honestly answer the following questions.  I know that this is probably really tough for you because as busy women, we never seem to have any time, right?  But you can do it – I believe in you.

  1. What do I want?
  2. What is important to me about having it?
  3. How will my life change if I have it?
  4. How will I feel when I have it?
  5. Who else will be impacted by this achievement?
  6. How will those I love see me when I achieve this?
  7. Will I feel different about me? How?
  8. How will this change the outcome of my life or the lives of those I love?

Write the answers in a special spot – for some it may be a journal while for others it could be a spot on your phone or if live by your planner, maybe it is on there.  You want it to be someplace that you can go to when you find that you are distracted or procrastinating.

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Life is full of changes which sometimes means that your ‘what and why’ will change, too.  Your special spot will be a great source of inspiration when life gets challenging.

Step #3: Follow through is the key even when things are hard.  Motivation comes from within and when you know what you really want and why you want it – you are unstoppable.  This inner power helps you to set boundaries to the things that distract you.  It allows you to be ready for the things that challenge you on the journey to realizing your dreams!

So, whether your dream is a dream kitchen or a clean house or a new job or promotion or even to grow your current business remember to tap into that inner power.  You said you will do XYZ but will you do it?  You said you will see your vision become a reality but will you?  What is holding you back?

Share your thoughts with us….Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Missed Blessing

“Remember, it is sin to know what you ought to do and then not do it.”     James 4:17 (NLT)

Has fear and procrastination caused you to miss a blessing?  Not sure, think about a great idea you got, you were excited but some where along the way you never followed through with it.

As I reflect today on this message, I think of the things that I never followed through on and wonder, did I miss a blessing?  Maybe you have been asked to take a risk?  Start your own business? Try rock climbing?  Go on a trip when you don’t know anyone going? Talk to a strange?  Perform a random act of kindness?  Did fear keep you from acting?  Or did you wait so long trying to figure it all out that you missed an opportunity?

Maybe you have missed out on experiencing something new.  Maybe God had a blessing for you and you missed it.

Jesus knew we would struggle with procrastination. He gave us Truths in His Word to combat it. But in today’s key verse we also see that not doing what we feel called to do is not only procrastination, but sin.

When God calls us to make a “risky” move for Him, we often worry and try to reason ourselves out of it. We might spend time looking at our obstacles rather than at God, which makes courage flee and fear paralyze us. In fact, when we wait for every life circumstance to be perfect before we step out in faith, the devil is happy to spend his time trying to bring us down and convince us to never move at all.

Procrastination may seem to come normal for us, but it is never God’s best for us. We don’t often think of it as sin, but anytime we don’t do what God called us to do, when He calls us to do it, it is sin. It’s easier said than done, but we mustn’t let fear outweigh faith.

So, will you have the courage to take a risk the next time an opportunity arises?  Will you trust and take that leap of faith?

Excerpts of today’s blog are courtesy of Encouragement for Today on Proverbs 31

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!