I recently wrote a post on finding answers through asking the right questions and one of the questions I’ve asked myself was this: Why procrastinate my success? This question actually came from a series of questions I had asked previous to it. Here is how my inner dialogue went:
- Why am I not as successful as I want to be?
- Because I don’t work as hard as I know I can.
- Why don’t I work as hard as I know I can?
- I end up procrastinating because there are other things I’d rather do at the time.
- Why would I rather do other things?
- Because they are more entertaining than hard work.
- What am I procrastinating?
- In the end, my success.
- Why am I procrastinating my success?
- I have no idea. I am just being stupid (see the Smart vs. Intelligent post).
As you can see, every time I procrastinate things I have to do I am in effect procrastinating my own success. I am pushing the lifestyle that I want so badly further and further away from myself. And for what? Watching TV? Playing video games? Oversleeping? None of these things are worth 1/1,000,000 of my success to me. Yet I do them almost everyday (see the Can’t Wait To Be Rich? Your A Liar! post) even though I know there are more important things I can do instead.
There are two reasons why people procrastinate their own success:
- The things they do instead are more entertaining or are easier.
- They don’t realize that what they are doing is procrastinating their success.
There’s nothing I can really do to help people do things that aren’t fun but are vital to their success. The only thing I can offer is the old cliche of “Anything worked hard for is usually worthwhile.”
But the second thing, I have found a solution for. Whenever I think about watching TV or playing video games when I know I have more important things to do I will ask myself “Why do I want to procrastinate my success?” Of course, my answer is always “I don’t!” This usually is enough to make me go out and do what I need to first.
This is common sense, but the reason why so many people end up doing what is unproductive is they don’t keep focused on their goal. It is so easy to get sucked into something that is unproductive. It has happens to me all the time. I will be working on my computer and my girlfriend will be watching a reality TV show that I have no interest in.
But before I know it my eyes are on the TV screen and an hour passes by. And for what? Watching a group of kids drink and party every night? My success is a lot more important to me than what a bunch of kids do at a club. But without keeping focused and I can easily fall into this trap, because this same trap is what most unsuccessful people fall into.