Having my say about procrastinating

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“A bird does not sing
because it has an answer.
It sings because it has a song.”

Chinese Proverb

Feed Me

To be honest, I have to admit this colourful male Varied Thrush was not singing. I’m not sure what he was doing — it looked more like a yawn, but it has prompted various potential captions:  “Feed me!!!” “Go find your own perch; this one’s mine.” “Hey, Alice! I’m gonna go watch the SuperBowl with a few starlings, and you can like it or lump it.”

The point is not so much what he might have been doing or saying but more that his mouth was open. Another Chinese proverb says, “A book tightly shut is but a block of paper.” It reminded me that intending to do something doesn’t require any effort, but doing it requires an action. When it comes to reading or writing a book, the action might be nothing more complex than opening the cover, creating a computer file or sharpening the lead of a pencil, but by not taking that simple action, any achievement is doomed.

DSC07413I should have thought of that during the weeks (months?) when I couldn’t face tidying my office! I know it’s related to the words of Chinese philosopher, Laozi: “A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”, from which we glean that even the most difficult tasks have a starting point. Still, if anything is to be achieved, that single step must first be taken.

DSC07415In my office, the first step came by means of a donated bookcase. I had to relocate an old one to make room for the new. One thing led to another, and soon I was reorganizing the whole room. Making a start set off a chain reaction.

My next writing project has been waiting in the wings. Even though I’m not entirely finished mulling, I think I need something to prod me to open my mouth… open a file… and start letting the words spill out. They’re beginning to clutter up my mind and the only way to remedy that is to begin organizing them on paper.

I’m just not sure what it’s going to take. It’s soooo easy to procrastinate.

What does it take to get you started when you’re procrastinating?

~  ~  ~

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6 thoughts on “Having my say about procrastinating

  1. joylene says:

    Discipline. And if that doesn’t work, guilt. Food not so much. That just keeps me standing at the fridge with my head stuck in the door. You’ve given me word for thought, Carol. I better go off and ponder.

    • Carol says:

      And I can just picture you ‘pondering’ on a lovely sandy beach somewhere! Discipline usually works for me, too, although when I sit down at the computer to write, too often I end up working on something else. LOL!

  2. S. Etole says:

    Remembering my mother’s words, “Just do it!”

  3. Helga Bolleter says:

    Nothing motivates me more to get out of my procrastination than if some well-meaning friend asks me how my ‘hobby’ is going!

  4. Sue Harrison says:

    What great sayings!! Thank you for a great motivational post. Facebook has been a great way for me to procrastinate – nothing like chatting with friends!! I often need one more cup of tea, too. And it takes a while to decide on the flavor and then the dog needs a hug, and I have a lot of stuff on the stairs to carry up on my way to the office….It’s great to be really good at something! LOL!
    Great post!

  5. Shari Green says:

    “It sings because it has a song” + “that his mouth was open” … these are wonderful, motivating images! Sing! Write! Tell our stories! :)

    When I’m procrastinating, making a decision and TELLING SOMEONE I’M GOING TO DO IT works (shames me into following through, I suppose). That, and setting a deadline for finishing a project. My perfectionist tendencies mean I will do almost anything to meet a deadline, lol.

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