If only procrastination had been on the syllabus when I as at school, I’d have bloody-well nailed it, I’d have got A****** with Honours, in fact, I’m pretty sure I’d have gone on to study a PHD and become Dr Bethan of Procrastination Courtman…
I truly believe that if I channelled my ‘procrastination energy’ into actual ‘running energy’, I’d be so bloody fast, I’d even be able to keep up with Twat Dog when he buggers off after a deer (or a hare, or a rabbit, or a squirrel or just because he fancies buggering off…)
But instead, I let the chatter in my head consume me and last night it happened again; I woke up at silly-o-clock and thought “whatever you do, don’t check the time, it doesn’t matter what the time is, DO NOT CHECK THE TIME” and then proceeded to ‘CHECK THE BLOODY TIME’. Anyway, it was too late, I’d done it, I’d CHECKED THE SODDING TIME and it was 2:56am (so what?) and sooooo the procrastination chatter began (along with a load of other ‘middle of the night essential nonsense’ which of course I’d forgotten by the time I woke up!)
However, I had concluded that I couldn’t possibly go for the pre-arranged run with my friend: I was too tired; my legs hurt (they didn’t really); my eyes were sore (not sure why this was suddenly important to running); I might need the loo (I ALWAYS need the loo but have developed ‘contingency plans’); I’d be miserable company for my friend (it’s never stopped me running with her before!); I’d ruin her run by having to stop (she wouldn’t care!)….and on and on and on…
So I messaged her to say “I’m going to have to bail, bla, bla, bla, sorry for letting you down, bla, bla, bla’ but my legs appear to have fallen off, my brain has seized up and I’m not up for doing my bear in the wood impression today bla bla bla”…
AND THEN IMMEDIATELY REGRETTED IT!
Making this decision DID NOT make me feel better, it made me feel worse; I was immediately consumed with regret (I tell you, it’s bloody exhausting this procrastination lark!)
And because I felt this way I KNEW my reasons for bailing were not about listening to my body, they absolutely were about listening to the inane chatter that had consumed my thoughts.
Fortunately, my friend knows me well so messaged back with “come for a walk and we can see how we get on’, which roughly translated meant “stop whittling woman, get your arse out of the door and when I say ‘walk’ what I actually mean is ‘run’ but we can both pretend we’re going for a walk if that’s how you want to play it!”
And so I went, because my reasons for running are about being with friends, talking, listening, taking photos, creating a story to tell AND I knew I’d regret my decision for the entire day if I bailed.
We did end up walking a little bit as my head did genuinely start pounding, which was most definitely my body saying ‘please be kind to me’ and I was fine with that and seemingly so was my friend!
So, the moral of the story? When the procrastination chatter starts in your head, focus on your reasons for ‘why’ you choose to exercise and challenge the chatter. It may well be that you genuinely aren’t up to going out for your run/exercise session but the chances are, if you think about your intrinsic motivators, you’re actually just kidding yourself.
Today I had to remind myself of these in order to get my arse out of the door, combined with a little bit of healthy peer pressure/accountability. The support of this friend to give me a metaphorical kick up the arse (I think she’d have happily given me a literal kick too!) was a key component in not allowing procrastination to define my day.