Saturday, October 2, 2010

Stop Putting It Off

by Andrew Cromwell

There are always things in our life that we do not want to do, so we put them off. We tell ourselves that we will do it tomorrow. We think about how the thing is going to take a long time or be painful to do. And in this way another day passes, another week, another month, and another year. And still the thing is not done.

We all have things we put off until a later date. Sometimes these things really are large tasks — getting back in school to finish a degree, painting the house, or tackling that big project at work. Other times, the tasks are actually small, but they feel large to us because they involve emotional investment or the potential for conflict — having that difficult conversation, visiting relatives, or balancing the checkbook.

Whether big or small, rational or irrational, we delay doing these things, and we usually do so to our own detriment. More often than not, the things that we put off are actually important. But instead of focusing on the value of getting these things done and on the (generally) wonderful results which would flow from doing them, we instead fill our time with doing other less important things.

We have all had the experience of finally doing the thing we were dreading for so long. When we do it, we generally discover it wasn’t as difficult as we had imagined. We also usually end up asking ourselves, “Why didn’t I just get this done sooner?” We wasted so much time worrying, delaying and talking ourselves out of it, when we could have just done it.

I remind my kids the way to eat an elephant is one bite at a time. We would all do well to remember that little adage. Start focusing on what needs to be done and do it. If the task is overwhelming, focus on the first piece. To finish your college degree, you must first sign up for one class. To fix your marriage, you must first write your spouse a note (or take them out on a date). To become the Karate Kid, you must first paint the fence.

We often miss the best things in life because we waste our time worrying about how difficult they are going to be. Instead, let’s focus on doing the things that are going to make a difference in our life.

So what are you putting off? Don’t delay any longer, get started today!

Isaiah 55:6 says, “Seek the Lord while He may be found, call on Him while He is near.” The pastors in Kings County would love to help you build the One relationship in all of our lives that we must NOT put off. Why don’t you stop putting off getting in church, it might not be quite as painful as you had imagined!

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