Procrastination and Getting Things Done

Getting on Track: Setting Goals for the Year that Aren't Totally Self-Centered

Most of us would like to finish the year with some sense, in concrete terms, that we're further along the "road to a meaningful life" than we were last January. But what does that road look like and where is it headed? If we don't give some thought to that question at the beginning of the trip, we're likely to end up at some random destination (including one which is not very far from where we started) and then, after the fact, we find ourselves dissatisfied with the direction we've taken. Though we're already checking days off our... calendar, it's not too late to step back and reflect on where you've been and where you're headed.
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Spring Cleaning Haiku

Spring cleaning dust of winter memories erased from the house. - Susan Sanchez-Barnett...
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To Merely Want To Do Something is Not Enough

by Shinichi Suzuki Shinichi Suzuki is the founder of the Suzuki Method of Music Education. This method is now popular throughout the world as an approach to the musical training of children studying violin, piano, cello, flute and other instruments....
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Emerging from the Sand: How to Stay on Track with What Really Matters

by Gregg Krech During our Living on Purpose course we surveyed the participants and found that nearly 80% struggled with distraction. Early in the course we talk about the metaphor of a vase with sand and big rocks (Covey, 1994)....
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Ten Changes that will start you off on the right track for the New Year

Statistically, most people won't keep their New Year's resolutions, at least for very long. It's difficult to break free from the momentum of the past, which tugs us repeatedly into maintaining the same habits and lifestyle. So you need to create new momentum that will work in your favor. Perseverance is the key. Each time you get off track, just get back on track one more time. Don't strive to make it a happy year. Strive to live a good life according to your own ideals. We only have about thirty thousand days to take advantage of this life and this body. You've used up quite a few of those days already. Treat them as if they were precious. Once they're gone, there's nothing you can do to get them back.
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Rethinking Goalsand Resolutions for the New Year

And so I think there is something valuable for all of us in a list of New Year's resolutions that includes more than our traditional goals for the year. It may be worth considering our relationship with others, both how we want to treat others, and how we measure our efforts. Taking quiet time to regularly reflect on our lives may be the most important resolution of all.
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Seven Strategies for Taking Action When You Don't Feel Like It

Usually getting stuck involves a set of feelings which acts like mud locked around our [automobiles'] wheels. Such feelings include confusion, boredom, fear, anxiety, depression, dislike of the task, or laziness. When we find that we're stuck, we're faced with the challenge of getting unstuck and taking action. Morita Therapy and Naikan are two methods of Japanese psychology which offer specific methods and strategies for getting out of the mud.... Here are seven strategies that might help you take action the next time you find yourself stuck....
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How We Change - Part II

Audio Broadcast 12 mintes Part II in the series by Gregg Krech on How We Change In this series, Gregg Krech offers some insight and practical strategies in how we can make changes in our habits and move our lives...
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The Japanese Psychology of Action: Morita Therapy

by Gregg Krech When I was 22 years old I moved into a freshly painted one bedroom apartment in Alexandria, Virginia. It was my first “solo” experience – no roommates, no dog, no parents, no siblings. I could leave my...
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The Importance of Action

[There are those who] have really managed to control the ego to the extent that they put others first, the good of others, the general happiness and general good before their own private happiness, their own private worth... How far people will go in that direction, how brave they can be. Not because they don't know what fear is, but brave because they feel they have to be brave for the sake of others. They will control their fear, put it behind them and do what they think ought to be done.
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Procrastination Disguised as Busyness

by Gregg Krech "Our failure to do what is important is disguised as busyness." - Gregg Krech The meditation teacher Eknath Easwaren talks about how people have energy only when it comes to things they like. If you enjoy painting,...
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Clutter as Tangible Procrastination

The alternative to this rush to the next sensation is to savor what's right in front of you. There's a little pulse of satisfaction, contentment, or even beauty in completing what you've started. Learn to fine-tune your antenna that picks up this bit of quiet pleasure, appreciate it, and cultivate it. True, it may be a subtle pleasure -- as subtle as the burden each item of clutter added to your life -- but if you encourage that pleasure, order will emerge effortlessly.
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The Slightest Move

Of course you can't always control your body, particularly if your body is medically or physically incapable of a particular action. No amount of willpower will allow me to jump six feet in the air from a standing start. Nor can a person who is paralyzed from an accident stand and walk through sheer effort. There is a grey area, however, when it comes to many health and mental health problems. Someone who is severely depressed may report that they simply "can't" get out of bed. Someone with mononucleosis may say that they really cannot walk up and down the stairs. In what situations is the body physically incapable of performing a task, and in what situations is it simply due to lack of effort or willpower?
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Perfectionism and the Fear of Making Mistakes

Making a mistake implies humiliation; it lowers one's social status, as being right increases it and this is at the root of our concern with goodness and righteousness. We are interested in it primarily because we are interested in our own prestige and status. Once we free ourselves from our fear of being inferior and recognize our worth and dignity, we no longer fear making mistakes--and, therefore make fewer. Our educational institutions are not yet prepared to teach this new social value of the courage to be imperfect. The ability to make mistakes graciously and to accept the ensuing predicament in the same spirit as if it had occurred without our fault is essential for functioning as a free person, as an equal amongst equals.
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Facing the Demons of Inaction: Morita Therapy as a Resource for Moving Forward

Ten years later I discovered the work of a Japanese psychiatrist that provided more than just insight into my struggles with procrastination. His work offered me a set of practical strategies for moving forward and taking action even when I didn't feel like it.
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When Plans and Reality Collide: The Tale of Victoria's Garden

Although the garden that Victoria tends today holds great meaning for her and others, the process of creating it was far different from what she had envisioned. At a critical point, despite her transcendent vision and with the aid of a highly synchronistic and rather humorous outer event (the hummingbird!), she stopped long enough to see clearly what could be accomplished with the reality directly in front of her: to surrender the details of her vision, to acknowledge her gratitude for what others were trying to do for her, and to allow a bridge to form from her original idea to a more relevant one. For those to whom images speak louder than words, her garden is a treasure for Naikan reflection and Morita-style goal tending.
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Editorial: The Responsibility for What We Do Not Do

We fool ourselves into thinking we are living a life of integrity simply because we lack a culpable action. Though our culpability is invisible we still must accept responsibility for what we do not do--particularly when we know, in our hearts, that something must be done, must be said.
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Defeating the Demons of Inaction: Indecision

So when we are confronted by indecision, we need to move forward despite our doubts or confusion. We need to move forward, even if we're only taking small steps. Those steps, regardless of which direction they go in, are likely to give us new information and experience. Our actions send ripples into the world. The situation may change or reveal itself in a new way once we have moved to a new vantage point.
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The Stress of Not Getting Things Done

There is no substitute for "accepting my feelings" (of laziness or boredom, or anxiety, or whatever happens to appear), "knowing my purpose" and then "DOING IT." My stress is relieved almost from the moment I start, and I go to bed that night often satisfied at what got accomplished.
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Purpose is Responding to What Needs to Be Done

As I continued to apply what I learned, I gained a new perspective on the meaning of purpose. It was no longer confined to "what I would really LIKE to do with my life," or "what SHOULD I be doing with my life" but rather it became much broader, more inclusive, and more immediate like "what needs doing now?" This new meaning demanded that I pay attention to my surroundings and notice the ripple effects of my actions.
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Just Doing It

I spent very little time [with my students] dealing with the murky causes of procrastination. We approached the problem from the standpoint of what we can control (behavior) and what we cannot (feelings) based on a method of Japanese psychology called Morita therapy.
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Take the Next Step... and See What Happens

Unless I take the first action step, the journey doesn't begin.... In reality, all I need [to be a writer] is a ballpoint pen and a place mat or the back of a dry cleaning receipt... and the faith to take that first step in crafting an essay or article.
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