What is your Goal, Vision or Dream?
Have you got a specific goal or dream but you are not sure where to start with it?
Do you dream about doing something that you know would make you feel good but put it off because you do not have enough “motivation” or “confidence”?
Are you someone who always seems to be “busy” but does not get much done?
Does your proscrastination cause you to feel guilty, confused and exhausted?
Would you like to feel good about what you do instead of feeling worse about what you haven’t done?
Would you like to be more organised?
Would you like to be more motivated?
Are you confused about what your purpose in life is?
Do you want to stop procrastinating NOW and utilise your time better?
You have lots of reasons, or excuses why you do not do things that make you feel good to enhance your life. You may want to go “toward” something or “away” from something. Most people do not know where to start. I can help you with this.
Your brain is very clever at hijacking you to come up with reasons to help you justify why you do not do something which, deep down, you really want to do. You plough along keeping busy and then come back to that ‘idea’ or ‘want’ again. You might even do this for years.
Some of your hesitation will come from the unconscious mind and the entemic nervous system, which is linked to the gastrointestinal system as it starts at the esophagus and goes all the way down to your colon. This has a huge role to play in motivation and mood – in other words, your feelings. Negative, self-doubt can be a confusing feeling as you battle with the rational and the irrational mind.
Using NLP (neuro linguistic programming) a close ‘cousin’ to CBT, motivation is about the ‘pictures’ in your head. How big they are, what is in them and what they look like to you. Everyone is different but this is a key factor for motivation and proscrastination and what is holding you back. The inner critic plays a role too and they overlap, as you may not know where that critic stems from. It could be fear of failure, it could be fear of success or it could be that you do not feel “good enough” to even try. What these things have in common is the picture you see in your mind’s eye. Your visual and auditory processing is at play, which forms your perception. Perception of self and others can be conditioned as a younger you to negative effects as a grown adult.
Motivation is NOT about stopping something but more about “reconditioning” your perception to help you see a difference picture (permanently). When you get things done that you really want to do, you feel better. When you feel better, your perception changes, you act better, look better AND the positive cycle begins all over again. Your relationship with yourself changes, your relationship with others then changes, your work improves and you become more efficient and less stressed.
What do I actually want?
When do I want it?
How can I manage it?
Who can help me?
Who will care or like it?
Why am I too busy on other ‘stuff’…
Procrastinating is a habit which is formed over time, so you become very good at it. Well done, if only we got a reward or big income from being such a great procrastinator. If you want to break negative habits, it is easy with practice but you cannot practice what you do not know.
All the postive affirmations, self-help books and mental health positive tips are useless when your chimp brain takes over. Your brain and cells are more powerful than words as words do not change the pictures you have engrained in the back of your mind for years..
Motivation is about WHY you want to do something and WHY you are held back. I can help you with your ‘WHY’.
Top Reasons for Procrastination
More often than not, the main reason for not starting something is that it will take too long with too little time so we allow distractions to be a good excuse.
We are often influenced on how we spend our time by our external environment such as work, children and family or different life goals with a partner or sibling and addiction to social media.
I have heard and given all the excuses but I have seen patterns emerge which ARE NOT YOUR FAULT. I have listed the top reasons I have either personally used or have heard from some of my clients:
Not actually knowing what it is you want (you know what you don’t want – that’s easy)
Pleasing others first. One person told me that they do not have ‘down-time’ after a full day at the office as it is “mean on their partner”. Constantly pleasing others can be emotionally and physically exhausting, so setting boundaries for yourself is very important
Low self-esteem to understand your own personal needs and unique identity
Turning a blind eye to achieving those personal needs for the pain or discomfort it may bring to you or others
Not being able to say no in case you upset someone
Poor time management and low energy
Allowing other ‘things’ to take over
You want to get on with it, but do not know where to start”
No purpose in life – “what’s the point-I cannot make a difference”?
Lack of resilience or adaptation to change
Fear of failure, making a mistake or getting it wrong
FEAR OF SUCCESS… yes it does play a role too
You are a perfectionist and this creates very high self-standards to stop you starting
You are trying to control the outcome too much
You are getting used to being ‘stuck in a rut’
Poor gut health or a blocked lymphatic system
Procrastination can be good or bad as it does serve you….
What I hear you say.. Yes, your unconscious mind will be looking at a survival mechanism to either save you from the pain or stress of a time-consuming task or fear of handling the changes it might have to bring to people around you OR if you go too big, you are scared you cannot handle the outcome. A need for recognition by doing small tasks keeps us going for now, but not fulfilled.
An interesting concept I have discovered with my clients is that they procrastinate more around September or as Autumn starts to creep in. This is a primal ancestry influence but also a pattern in my world of Ayurveda.
I cannot be holistic if I do not look at your overall lifestyle, digestive health and personal attributes. Your brain does rule but your gut plays a huge role. In ayurveda, motivation can also be linked to gut health and toxins as well as the individual brain (but hey, they are all connected).
If the seasons fall into place when the weather changes, September will mark the beginning of Autumn. It would be wiser and kinder to yourself to review your routines and clear down for Winter at this time. Your body and mind need to adjust so try not to make big plans. Otherwise, your body WILL fight you, causing a natural tendency to procrastinate. Your body wants you to take it easy for the first few weeks of September to allow a natural seasonal change and transition. This is when the weather becomes cooler and drier and this will, undoubtedly, affect different dosha energies of the body. Setting small, achievable goals at this time of year will be a great start to any health or life change plan. (Remember; life changes can take months and even years, so decide now what you want and this time next year you will be rewarded)
- Autumn is the Vata dominance and imbalance time of the year. This is because it a time of year when the Vata body constitutions may feel anxious and restless and unhappy with less sun and heat. You will start to feel dry, constipated and restless. You already take on a lot and run in overdrive but this is not the time of year to tackle anything too big as your sensitive nature will be overwhelmed. You need to start rebalancing your emotions. Take it easy the first week or two of September but DO capture your goals in written form. You can then get on with whatever plans you need to make and will have more energy for it once you feel more balanced and grounded.
- Another person may feel “burned out” from pushing through a hot summer and have achieved ‘loads’ but had to overwork and ‘overheat’ to get there (Pitta dominance and imbalance). You will be the type that nearly always gets things done and admits to being “obsessed” with work. However, “Pitta” welcomes Autumn and is ready to make changes and with a cool relief from the hot summer. You may decide to book up a competitive sporting event or enjoy their exercise plans more. You may be ready to book your holiday now before everyone else does. Get active in September to release your energy and get into your next project – gentle runs, cycling or quick energetic walks or swims will benefit Pitta types this time of year.
- If you are generally the ‘type’ that has no pressure or sense of urgency to you, others may call you lazy or ‘too laid back’, then the Kapha dominance and body type may be at work here. However, early Autumn is a great time of year for Kaphas to make plans and changes AND start implementing them NOW, especially weight-loss motivation. Using this time of year wisely will be key for Kaphas to keep a clear head and set some goals before the hibernation-mode and weight gain of winter sets in. Contact me if you need help with balancing your weight over the autumn/winter period or want to start losing what you have put on over summer (especially during lockdown).
September is a wonderful time of year for review and renewal. Many people set goals in January (the worst time of year to plan or commit to anything). Other people (Pittas and Kaphas primarily) go back to their ‘health regimes’ and massages after summer as their bodies intuitively know that they need some extra care.
Health Note: Procrastination will be normal at this time so it will be fine to let it go and do not overplan your schedule. In addition, your immunity needs more careful attention around this time of year. Consider checking your toxicity levels first to remove any build up of toxins (ama) from the the summer. Drinking herbal teas and warm liquids as opposed to cool or cold will be better for all body types and start to cut down on the salads.
Strategic Procrastination can be a good thing as it can delay any irrational or thoughtless actions and allows ideas to bubble away in the background. It is more of a deliberate action to do nothing and this is fine. It may be that you have worked really hard on something lately, expending your physical and mental energy and have a decision to make on the next step. By stepping back with ‘strategic procrastinating’, you allow time to evaluate your options and reduce any risk by helping your brain to make well thought-out choices and then you will be happy with the outcomes you cannot control.
This is good procrastination when large amounts of money or investment are required, or life-changing decisions like changing careers or gaining new qualifications, which cost both money and time. Strategic procrastinaton can help more ideas come to the surface to put that dream idea into play.
Be careful you do not take long to make a decision like this but once you get your timing right, it can be great motivation for you. If you are stuck with this particular area, give me a call and I can offer some FREE inpartial advice to help you define your own next steps – details below and happy to help.
Results of Procrastination
Excluding the change in seasons, strategic procrastination and just being burnt out, you have something on your mind that you want to deal with soon. This could be anything from a difficult conversation to changing your image or wardrobe of clothes or a time-consuming work project, planning a divorce, a birthday, wedding, moving to a new area, meeting new friends OR climbing everest ….!
When it comes to work deadlines, study or time-sensative goals, procrastinating and starting last minute can put your body under stress to get it done. I do not care if you say you are good at getting things done “last minute”. All this shows is that you crave stimulation and this way of achieving things it is not healthy in the long-term.
Your inability to make decisions and plan properly can be tiring and exhausting and will have a negative impact on your health and your relationships. Seeing someone run around like a ‘headless chicken’ can be extremely frustrating for others to watch and live with.
Fire-fighting is not a way to live your life and you will feel overwhelmed and exhausted with guilt, as well as a feeling of being ‘useless’ and stuck in a maze. Fire-fighting increases the stress hormones of cortisol and too much cortisol can alter your immune system and suppress your digestion and reproductive systems. It can also affect your mood and motivation. Another hormone, CRH or corticotropin-releasing hormone can trigger the hypothalamus of the brain and affect pituitary and adrenal function. Thyroid issues may be a result of this ongoing stress hormone then poor sleep and not being able to wind down and focus properly.
- Procrastinating and lack of weekly planning can also create clutter in your workspace and home. This then adds to a cluttered mind, with no motivation to start anything. Hoarders will admit to feeling this way
- Procrastinating uses energy that could be spent feeling uplifted and energised
- Procrastinating can cause you to feel depressed by not achieving or gaining personal rewards
- Procrastinating can cause restless sleep due to unprocessed thoughts and lingering ‘to do’ lists
- Procrastinating can put your mind into a maze of thoughts, which become a ‘haze of thoughts’ and stress
- Procrastinating means you are not being the best you can and the world is missing out on your skills or experience
Time Management Process (to help yourself)
There are very simple but effective methods to put in place to help you manage your time better and feel more motivated. Here are some general pointers to get you started:
- Do you have a 5 YEAR GOAL, 2 YEAR GOAL or a 1 YEAR GOAL? If not, I can help you with this during one session
- Set a one-word THEME FOR THE YEAR and write it down at the front of your notepad. For example, last year my theme was FUN, this year it is SOCIAL. Next year it is BUSINESS. Another year it was DECLUTTER. Make up your own and attract it. IT WILL HAPPEN
- Write a list of PROJECTS, Goals or Aims that you want to achieve
- You can have as many projects as you want, but then decide which one or two you are going to work on
- For each Project, write the very next action needed to move it forward – ask yourself what you need to do to move this project forward. Who do you want to speak to first? Can you set a start date NOW? If so put a date in the dairy. The next action may involve research or financial planning or just starting
- Each week, take an action and work on it. Remember your other commitments such as general chores or working IN work rather than ON it. Be realistic about what you can achieve in any given week or day.
- Decide where you will capture these steps and use only one tool for this for example on your phone or in a large notebook.
- Include some action or step from your project list or yearly theme
- Make sure you do NOT put actions into your diary. Your diary is only for firm appointments at a given ‘clock-time’ during the 24 hour period.
- At the end of the week, REVIEW what you have done or need to carry over or drop. This will help guide you into the following week
- What have you got on in your diary that needs preparation or travel etc?
- What did you have on last weeks lists that you did not do? Do you carry it over to this week OR drop it?
- Set a time once a week or month to do a review – ask yourself what you achieved last week or last month and what you want to get done this week or month. People are never good at giving themselves praise for what they HAVE done but find it all too easy to beat themselves up about what they have NOT done. This is a great trait in learning to be demotivated!
- Consider starting a journal to capture your thoughts from the day or week and use this as self-therapy to process to reduce stress
- Get rid of post-its and back of envelopes for writing things down
- Turn off all notifications and pop-ups from social media, emails and texts when you are working on your project or reviewing your week
- Unsubscribe to all those newsletters and just capture a list of companies or people you want to follow or check up on
- Are you a member of 100s of Fbook groups. This can relate to fear of missing out. Can you leave some of these groups?
- Set a time each day or week when you will look at posts AND respond or action-keep logged out of social media first thing in the morning and last thing at night.
- Let go of GUILT – if you did not manage something, work out why. You are the one in control of all of this and feeling guilty will not serve you.
Here’s how I help
Firstly, I know how it feels to be in a maze of everything mentioned above and get nowhere. You wake up a few years later and realise you are in the same rut as before. I do not judge any of your decisions or lack of decision making or hesitation. Instead I work with you over a series of sessions to get you to be the best version of yourself, balance your life and start living so that you have something positive to motivate you to get out of bed for every day with energy and vigour.
Addressing the underlying reason why you are ‘stuck’ will be the key to a good coach. I do not just talk at you but work WITH you and your map of the world. All of the reasons listed for not doing something are valid and human. However, there are ways around most of them and this is where coaching can come into it.
- Why are you too tired? Is it work, your diet or lack of sleep – ayurveda can help you change this
- Who are you trying to please – is there a voice inside your head that you have taken much notice of or suppressed for years?
- We look at your needs and how they are met or not
- We get your self-identity, self-esteem, purpose in life and motivation raised to another level
- What would you like to change, see or do?
- How do you organise yourself? We will review this thoroughly and get a simple system that works for you
- What takes over?
- Can you learn the three step approach?
- PROBLEM – most people are stuck in this mode
- SOLUTION – many people know the answer
- EXECUTION – few people change the problem
- I will look at how you plan your week, your daily routines and what is getting in the way that is not obvious to you
- We will change how you organise yourself, your to do lists and start getting some actions written down in an easily accessible area for you to use.
- We look at your office or desk space and where you work
- We will look at your energy levels throughout the day and see where you are going wrong
- We all wear various ‘hats’ of responsibility but it is about achieving balance in your already hectic world, whether you work six days or two.
- We look at the importance of your ‘toolbox and tools’ such as your notepads, diary, reminders, regular or recurring events or things
- Are you electronic or manual – that does not matter. What will help you is having a flow to get the things done that you want to get done. When I worked with UBS and Franklin Covey representatives we had basic tools of just an outlook calendar and a Palm Pilot or Blackberries. However, the same principles can still apply today, even with internet and social media.
- We will look at how you can easily ‘process anything that comes in’ and how they can affect your motivation; for example:
- Messenger/Twitter/Instagram etc
- A voicemail
- A request or suggestion by a partner or colleague
- An item through your letterbox
- A social media comment or article of interest
- A notification on your phone or tablet (that you feel you MUST respond to NOW)..
- A quick thought that you continually keep in your head to remember…the worse thing you can do
- Something you heard and want to ‘research’
- The back of the envelope “reminder”
- The clutter in your life
- Some big distractions that you were not expecting
As a SPECIAL OFFER FOR SEPT, OCT & NOV I am only charging £40.00 for an hour coaching session, in person or with a consultation and protocal done via virtual media. I will design a written first plan protocol agreed by you but with my guidance during our sessions. A follow up motivatonal discussion 2 weeks later will cost just £20. This can help keep you on track until our next personal or virtual appointment.
If you want to discuss how I can help, call me on 07903 215524. We can have a confidential chat about what you want to have happen and how I can start to help be more motivated. We can also look at streamlining how you manage your organisational systems and your time to your best advantage.
Photo why what how-geralt/pixabay
Photo 2 question-Anemone123 / Pixabay