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Procrastination: Evidence of Overindulgence?

Ideas on time management and self-regulation.

So I thought I'd share a glimpse into one of my morning routines with you. When I roll out of bed in the morning, I grab my phone, but not for the reason you're probably thinking right now. I reach for my phone to read the book of Proverbs for that day–in case you didn't know, the book of Proverbs has 31 chapters making it a perfect monthly read. On this day, it was the 24th and as I ended the chapter, I caught myself going back over these set of verses that I had read many times before–Proverbs 24:30-34 in The Message (MSG) translation, and it reads:

One day I walked by the field of an old lazybones,
and then passed the vineyard of a lout;
They were overgrown with weeds,
thick with thistles, all the fences broken down.
I took a long look and pondered what I saw;
the fields preached me a sermon and I listened:
“A nap here, a nap there, a day off here, a day off there,
sit back, take it easy—do you know what comes next?
Just this: You can look forward to a dirt-poor life,
with poverty as your permanent houseguest!”​

That was Solomon speaking and to be honest, his assessment of the situation is quite brutal, I mean, brutally honest.

State of Affairs

The verses from Proverbs 24 simply talks about the habits of a serial procrastinator and I can admit I can be that guy sometimes, I put things off I know I should be doing, change schedule and push deadlines out a little just to leave some room for comfort, you know what I mean.

Matter of fact, I think we all have the inclination to be like this sometimes without even realizing it but this short insight, thanks to Solomon, provides us with a glimpse into the consequences of procrastination–fields overgrown with weeds, thick with thistles and broken down fences. These things, in our world today, could essentially mean clutter–physical and mental clutter–when we get overwhelmed by the state of things around us and in our space, ultimately resulting in a mental overload. This is when we say we are stressed and stress becomes unhealthy over time.

In view of this well-known scenario, I think our space and mind could use more decluttering from time to time, and for our own ultimate benefit.

Self-regulation

After taking a long look to reflect on what he saw, Solomon soon realized the problem–too many naps, too many days off, and add excessive Netflix to that! Not that I am advocating a no-nap life, I certainly can't live that life as I love my naps and trust me when I say some Netflix binge-watching occasionally here and there would probably not alter our life's trajectory in a significant way. But I think we can agree that anything done in excess is ultimately bad for us, and especially when these things take higher priority over other important things in our lives.

You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today –Abraham Lincoln

In the last chapter of my book "Passion Reveals Purpose", one of the 12 principles suggested for a significant life is "earning your play time", meaning we should strive to make valuable contributions before we pursue rest and I'm not talking about your everyday night sleep, that's crucial and one you don't have to earn. But when we decide to take time off during the hours of the day, are we doing it justly? Are we giving before taking?
I believe by adding value to our day first, that we qualify ourselves to draw benefits from that day, benefits like a nap, cheat meal or time for Netflix. By doing this, we can avoid a dirt-poor life–and I don't mean dirt-poor in terms of money but dirt-poor in our mental state, relationally, or even our health.
Solomon's wisdom speaks for itself and needs no advocates but I think this is an exceptional piece of advice we can trust–being aware of the state of our affairs and constantly self-regulating–to enable us to lead a fulfilling and meaningful life.

Tosin Adewumi
The All-Round You | Passion Reveals Purpose

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