Almost every superhero or villian has a sidekick. Someone who helps them carry out their mission. They typically work behind the scenes. This week I once again met procrastination's sidekick: Waiting.
For the past seven days I have been waiting to hear from publishers about my next book project. The interest has been strong and I am proud of the work Todd Musig (co-author on one of my previous books, Juggling Elephants) and I put into the project for over three years. On the downside, however, I have noticed that I am avoiding work on some tasks, justifying it with, "I'm waiting to hear back about the book."
The reality is that the book project should not have such a tremendous hold on my schedule, but that's what waiting does. It takes us captive and supports procrastination's goal of putting off what's important. As I've worked through the waiting this past week, I have learned that there are several things I can do to not allow waiting to "tie me up." They include:
- Focus on tasks not connected to the answer you are waiting on.
- Ask yourself, "What can I do now that will allow me to better celebrate the answer I hope to get when it comes?"
- Also ask, "What actions can I take now that will lessen the pressure to get the answer I want?" An example for me is to continue to develop new book and presentation ideas instead of relying on this one book project to define my steps.
Just know this. If you are prone to procrastination, the villian of waiting is close at hand.