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Monday, October 11, 2010

Mystic Monday

The Art of Procrastination

Happy Monday readers!

Okay, yes, I'm late, but that's only because I was up late last night (or until early this morning) watching scary movies - it is October after all! Sunday afternoon watched Scream 1,2,3 in preparation for Scream 4's release in April of 2011.

However, the horror movie junkie that I am, couldn't get enough and I went from that to Halloween. I watched I and II. Curious about my viewing comments on these movies? Well, be sure to check out our Horror House, designed with the teen in mind, but also for the person who appreciates good scary flicks, no matter when it was made.

By now, you might be wondering why I have titled this "The Art of Procrastination". Well, even though I might have blogged about this topic in the past, I haven't had any real epiphanies or made any great strides...until now.

Okay, my husband might think that I'm wearing this with pride, but I view procrastination as an addiction rather than just a bad habit. Bad habits can be changed if you really want to, but true procrastination, that takes repetitive bad choices - there always has to be something better to do than what you're putting off.

Those of you who procrastinate know what I'm talking about. You know that procrastination isn't a habit because try as hard as you might, it's something you'll always do, and it can be started from the smallest of ideas, such as -
"Oh, but I need to spend time with family, so that can wait."
or, here's one of my favorites, "This event only happens once a year, so this can wait."

Honestly, cleaning is not one of my more favorite tasks and the biggest reason is my allergy to dust. See, this is a huge catch-22 for me. I'm damned if I do and damned if I don't. If I kept the house clean, I'd reduce the allergens in the home, however, cleaning in itself causes me to have respiratory problems. Can't afford a house cleaner and my husband sure isn't the type to clean regularly, so it falls to me, and there's always something more important than getting respiratory distress from dust...:).

Now, I admit I procrastinate, but this time, I've elevated it to an art form.

How so?'s the story...of a lovely lady, who was bringing up three girls of her own....sorry, there it goes again. I'm's the scoop:
I saw that the Thornbirds was on TV, haven't seen it in awhile and really wanted to watch it. Well, I couldn't justify all the time spent just watching, so I looked around at the house and saw a big job I've been meaning to tackle for years now - sorting through old junk mail.

It all started back in college. I just never had time for it. Between studying, spending time with my husband, and finding time for myself so that my brain wouldn't explode, the only thing I really truly had time to deal with - or wanted to - was bills. The rest, well, I kept saying, "I'll get to it later."

Yeah, I know, it's junk mail and doesn't take that long to go through, right? Should have been simple, but it wasn't, not for me. No, that's not a cop-out, it's the truth. At the time it all started, I was studying to be an electrical engineer. Yes, I may have had the smarts for it, but it wasn't easy, and there were classes that required a lot of my time, and my brain - as well as my sanity - needed study breaks, but it never saw going through mail as a "break", but another chore. So, into a shoebox it went. Eventually, I had shoeboxes full of junkmail and boxes full of these boxes. Eventually, they ended up all over the house. It's a freakin' nightmare.

Before I knew it, I had a problem, and I let it keep growing, until about a month ago. I had cleaned off the kitchen table, again, as well as the area surrounding the space I keep my laptop. I managed to set up a place where I can put all of my torn up junk mail.

Which brings me to another reason why I let things get so out of hand - fear of identity theft. That's another story. No, it hasn't happened to me. I just have my opinions on it, but I'll save them for another post.

Anyway, I managed to keep up with current mail for about a month, and I realized that if I can keep up with it regularly, I can manage the problem. I hoped that this would eventually help me work up the nerve to deal with the larger junkmail problem.

However, it wasn't to work quite like that. As some of you might know, I fell into a wallow of depression for a time. It was during this I really started to consider my life and where I was headed. For months, I have been trying to "exist" during the waking hours of the day, getting myself a new schedule so that I could enter the workforce and be a "functioning member of society." Yeah, right, who was I kidding? I'm a night owl, I need to embrace that. Okay, did that - honestly, I have. If I need to be up in the morning now, I just stay awake and make up for the sleep later. Sounds strange, but it's easy for me to do.

But, that didn't explain some of the other issues I was having in my life. I looked all over the condo and saw all these "unfinished" projects all over the place, not to mention my stack of stories. I realized that, if I ever wanted to be successful as a writer, or anything for that matter, I would need to learn how to "close" or "finish" something.

I realized that the true source of my writer's block wasn't lack of inspiration, but lack of space - anywhere! My brain has been overwhelmed with trying to figure out what I was going to do with some of the junk around the house, where I was going to start, etc.

It took me awhile, but it wasn't just about where to start, it was really more about actually "finishing" a task. Well, that's where the Thornbirds comes in. I wanted to watch it, but I needed to "finish" the task of sorting through my mail, so I sorted my mail while I watched the Thornbirds. That was the deal I made with myself - I couldn't watch any of it unless I sorted mail. I've been working for a week, and I'm not sure I'm half done yet because I honestly don't know how much more is lying around the house.

I've got stuff to be filed or tossed from at least as far back as 2005. Yeah, not proud of that, but, since I consider procrastination an addiction, admitting it is only half the battle. Now, I have to fight that evil notion of procrastination, which isn't easy to do, especially when living with a husband who practices it too.

There's another big reason - when your spouse says they'll do something and it takes them forever to do it, you find much more satisfying to put off doing something - as in cleaning. It's like a little war, only no one wins.

Any of this sound familiar? Well, what's your story?

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