…and “Someday” is not one of them!
Over the last several months, I have heard a good many leaders talk about what they are thinking about doing with their businesses in 2014. The conversation is a great opening for discussions on execution and, at the same time, the execution-killer; Procrastination!
We all know about procrastination because we all do it. At some point in our careers, we put off something that was important in one way or another. We knew what we needed to do was important and yet we put it off anyway. So why do we put off goals we know are important to do something else? I have come across three main reasons that I believe covers the majority of procrastinators.
Laziness – I am not suggesting for a minute business leaders are lazy. What I am suggesting is that when we do something that is not important at the expense of something that is important based on the fact that we just don’t like doing the important task, we are being lazy. Brian Tracy speaks to this phenomenon when he talks about “Eating the Frog First”. He suggests doing the hard thing, or the thing you don’t like to do, first so the rest of the day is free from the stress of doing that thing.
Apathy – When we keep putting off tasks we once told ourselves was important right up to the point where we actually have to do them, apathy sets in. Was that goal really that important? In the absence of another priority that takes its place, the original was likely never that important. The reason we identify in writing the Rewards and Consequences of a Goal is for the expressed purpose of identifying its importance relative to the other goals we have to accomplish and avoid apathy from setting in.
Fear – Actually, when we talk about fear, we talk about FEAR (False Expectations Appearing Real). We typically fear failure without truly understanding the role failure has in our learning process. We fear the unknown and yet statistically, only 8% of what we fear actually happens; and half of that is of little consequence! This fear is also the reason we identify potential obstacles early in the goal planning process so the unknown becomes as tangible as possible and we can proactively identify ways to mitigate them.
As you start thinking about your goals for 2014, how are you keeping “Someday” out of your mindset?