Friday, February 4, 2022

Conquering Procrastination


BySarah Geringer 

Despite their desires, the lazy will come to ruin,
    for their hands refuse to work.

Proverbs 21:25 NLT

I have a long-time struggle with procrastination. It has reared its ugly head the past few weeks, and I've paid the price of cramming in responsibilities at the very last minute. This has caused me unnecessary stress, so I'm examining the basis of my procrastination with God.

My procrastination has several roots. I'm naturally born to be a high achiever and I lean toward perfectionism as an Enneagram 1. But I tend to approach my work as all-or-nothing, rather than a steady stream. This tendency sets me up to wait too long to get some important things accomplished.

I also struggled with procrastination as a child. Now that I'm older, I can see I had too many responsibilities as a child in a single parent home. Under the heavy burdens, I sometimes crumbled by procrastinating. It was my silent protest against the pressure, but it always backfired on me.

I can't change my personality, nor can I go back and redo my childhood. But I can become more aware of these tendencies in myself and admit my weaknesses before God. This helps me heal from the failures of my past and rely on his strength to help me overcome.

There is one important part of my procrastination I CAN control today. More often than I care to admit, I procrastinate due to laziness. I just don't want to do the task I need to do, because it doesn't feel as comfy or cozy as the things I want to do. 

Today's verse warns us against procrastination due to laziness. Though we may desire to do the right thing, we come to ruin when we refuse to do the work right in front of us. My ruin came in the form of extra stress, disrupted sleep, and flareups in my immune system. I also experience ruin when I condemn myself for not doing what I know I need to do (see Paul's similar struggle in Rom. 7:14-25). 

The good news is that God wants to help us conquer our procrastination. He does not condemn us for waiting until the last minute to do the things we've moved too far down our priority list. Instead, he lovingly invites us to approach him in prayer before and during our temptations to procrastinate, asking him to help us stay on track. He encourages us to accept his grace when we are tempted to condemn ourselves. Afterward, we can rejoice with him in prayer, celebrating the mini-victories over avoiding procrastination. Or we can forgive ourselves and ask God's forgiveness, and make a fresh start next time.

I'm making a fresh start today in staying on track with my tasks. I always feel better when I get that one important task out of the way first, even if it's not my favorite feel-good choice. If you struggle with procrastination, I suggest you try something new: read this article to understand how our emotions are linked to procrastination, and invite God into that process. I'm doing it this week to find greater peace, and I pray you'll find greater peace in this process too.

Looking for more encouragement? Check out all the posts I've written for Woman 2 Woman Ministries HERE.

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Have a blessed weekend!

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1 comment:

  1. Sarah, I have definitely struggled with procrastination! Thank you for this encouragement! ♥


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