76. Why We Procrastinate

Tired of putting things off? Procrastination tends to get the best of us. The reason that you’ve been procrastinating is because it’s easier to avoid the emotion in the moment. Your brain gives all of the excuses, all of the things that you should be doing instead, all of the reasons that it would be better if you did it at a different time. 

Listen in to Learn:

– The reason your brain defaults to procrastination

– How to stop putting off what could be done now for a later time

– How to feel your emotion

– How to get things done

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0:00 Hey, what’s up everyone is Jennie Dildine, the LDS mission coach and you are listening to the LDS mission Podcast, episode number 76 Why we procrastinate? I’m Jennie the LDS mission coach. And whether you’re preparing to serve a mission, currently serving a returned missionary or a missionary mama like me, I created this podcast just for you. Are you searching for epic confidence? Ready to love yourself and to learn the how of doing hard things? Then let’s go. I will help you step powerfully into your potential and never question your purpose. Again. It’s time to embrace yourself. Embrace your mission. Embrace your life, and embrace what’s next. Hey, every buddy, welcome to the podcast. Thanks so much for hanging out with me. I can’t believe we’re in December. Yeah. That’s kind of crazy. Christmas, here we come. Are you pumped? Are you stressed? Oh, maybe a little both. Right. Um, I hope that you’re doing some fun, like Christmas II type things that super fun. I wanted to remind you that you only have a couple more days to get you or you return to missionary into my RM group. You know, I sometimes are missionaries. Most times. Our missionaries, when they come home, they struggle. And I know like it is a tough transition. But I don’t think that we need to druggable and suffer through that transition. In fact, what we can do is we can make our mission, an amazing springboard for the life we want to create. And you just need a couple skills. That’s all and stuff you’ve probably never been taught before. Like it makes total sense. If you’ve been thinking this thought like, I don’t know what my purpose is. It makes total sense. If you are thinking like I just am not fulfilled anymore since coming home. It makes total sense. If you think that’s like, I don’t even know what the right decision to make is. Totally makes sense, just your brain know you’re completely normal. But also know, you can create something different. And that’s what we’re doing in my returned missionary group. So if you’re interested in that, shoot me an email Jennie at Jennie dildine.com. And we’ll see if it’s a good fit for you. The tools in there are completely transformational, you will start to really be able to navigate your post mission experience with confidence. super fun, super awesome way to empower yourself to create the life that you want. So it’ll be fun, you should totally be in there. I can’t wait to see you and meet you. And today we’re talking about procrastination. Doesn’t that sound fun? And I mostly doing this podcast for me. Because I already know that I tend to procrastinate. And but not in a like horrible way. But I know especially in my younger years I procrastinated a lot. And so I I’m thinking with all this stuff that’s kind of coming up for the holidays, and whether you’ve got to send a package to your missionary or whether you’ve got to bake cookies for the people in your ward, if you’re a missionary or whatever you got to do. We tend to procrastinate. And there’s a reason why and one of the reasons why is because it works to avoid emotion. So procrastinating is basically putting off what could be done now for a later time. So as I’ve been observing myself, what I’ve noticed is the main thought is that’s going to be hard, or I don’t have enough time. But what I’ve started to know and what I started to understand is that just comes from that lower brain, it’s trying to be tricky. And it’s trying to be tricky because it doesn’t want to feel whatever uncomfy emotion is associated with the thing. Whether you have to feel some dread or some boredom, or some discomfort of any kind. Your brain doesn’t like that. And so it’s going to try to avoid that emotion. Remember, your lower brain can’t differentiate between physical pain and emotional pain. So you sit Being down to write that final paper that you have to write for your class feels like death to your brain. Right? That emotional pain is equated the same to your brain. So, I’ve just learned how to sort of be on to my brain. And so we’re going to talk a little bit more about procrastination. I actually, this was super fascinating. I went and kind of just googled procrastination. And guess what came up a website called solving procrastination.com. And it came up with a whole list of the different types of procrastinators Did you know this was a was a thing. It’s a thing. And so maybe as I go through these, you can kind of see like, where you land and all of this is just good information. Just just good awareness. Okay. So there’s a perfectionistic procrastinator. It said that these people are so concerned about their work being imperfect, that they delay things like making their work public. There’s over planning procrastinators. So they use unnecessary planning as a way to delay doing things, especially if they’re afraid of doing sad things. There’s overwhelmed procrastinators who feel so overwhelmed by things they need to do that they end up not doing any of them. This I so far, I’ve seen myself in all three of these categories about you. There’s also pessimistic procrastinators, they’re overly doubtful in their own ability to do things and therefore avoid them. There’s depressed procrastinators. And these are people who suffer from depression or discouragement, and it makes them tired and unmotivated. So that is a real thing. There’s laid back procrastinators. And generally it says these people are unconcerned with tasks, or goals or consequences for missing deadlines. And they’re, they just don’t want to put in the effort. There’s impulsive procrastinators, who delay because they can’t manage the impulse to engage in other alternatives. I totally see this. Like, when I sit down to record a podcast, my brain was like, you know, what would be better is if we didn’t laundry. I mean, who wants to do the laundry? Isn’t that so funny? But my brains like now, it’d be a good time to do that. There’s thrill seeking procrastinators. And these people delay getting started intentionally because they enjoy the thrill of working under intense time pressure before deadlines. So I do I have met clients like this. They’re like, No, I want that pressure. That’s good thing for me. It fuels me. There’s indecisive procrastinators, these people struggle to make decisions in a timely manner. So some of you might be able to relate to that. And then I thought this one was interesting. This is the last one I’ll share. And there were others but daydreaming procrastinators. So they like to spend a lot of time fantasizing about the things that they hope to accomplish. But they spend so much of that time dreaming about it, that they never actually put work towards those things. So if you’re like me, maybe you can see yourself and a little bit of all of these. But what I found is that generally, in every instance, whether you’re a perfectionistic procrastinator, or an over planning procrastinator, all of these types of procrastination are putting off what could be done right now is a way to avoid emotion. It’s a way to avoid feeling discomfort. So I’m sure there are tons of other ways that we procrastinate. But mostly, what I found is we either avoid just doing it altogether or we replace it with something else. So but here’s what we need to know about procrastinating. We can’t put off the feeling. So we can put off writing that paper we can avoid. Like we can put off doing that exercise we can put off doing our Christmas shopping. We can put off studying we can put off planning that lesson for the mission. But we can’t put off the feeling.

9:55 So we’re either going to feel stress now by sitting down and writing that paper now, or we’re gonna feel stress later. Right when we’re studying for that test, if every time we think about studying or writing that paper, our brain will say, that’s gonna be too hard, we don’t have time. Like, we don’t want to be overwhelmed or stressed. So we avoid doing it, we avoid feeling overwhelmed and stressed. So instead, we just put it off. And then we just feel more overwhelm and stress later. Have you ever thought about this, like, we can put off the action that we’re taking, but we can’t put off the emotion. So our brain kind of tells us if we put off that activity, then guess what, we’re going to be putting up an emotion. But remember, the activity itself doesn’t create your emotion, your thoughts do so your thought that this was going to be hard. And I don’t have enough time, or whatever that is, whatever that thought is, is gonna still be around probably three hours later, when you decide to do it, or three days later, or three weeks later, when you actually circle back around and decide to do that thing. And then not only that, but we’re going to add in a whole bunch of other thoughts on top of it. Like, why do I procrastinate, I can’t believe I always procrastinate, there must be something wrong with me. Okay? Picture, if you’re preparing for a talk, or that you’re gonna give in church or a lesson that you’re supposed to teach, maybe if you’re a missionary, it can be super uncomfortable to sit down and write it. I get it, like, even just for me to sit down and write these podcast episodes. And I don’t write them out, I just kind of do bullet points. But just to create an any sort of an outline my brains like we don’t want to we have we don’t have time, that’s not going to be fun, we’re going to have to feel bored. Right. So in order to sit down and write that talk, or give that like write down some kind of an outline for the lesson you want to teach, we might need to feel some emotion, we might need to feel bored, overwhelmed and confused. The listen, if we wait till the last minute, we will just have to feel bored, overwhelmed, confused. Later. Like we can’t procrastinate, emotion. I mean, we can, but we can’t ever put it off completely. So now not only are we going to be feel bored, overwhelmed, confused, but we’ve likely added in some panic, and urgency. So that sounds fun. So listen, I don’t want any of y’all like on here like judging yourselves and being like, well, I’m the worst I’ve been procrastinating for a long time. The reason that you’ve been procrastinating is because it works to avoid the emotion in the moment, it totally works. We get to change our thinking, we get to create a different emotion, we get to distract ourselves from feeling emotion, we get to avoid feeling any emotion at all right? We don’t need to judge ourselves. But I think just this awareness that we’ve started to create for you right now, about what’s really going on there, we’re just avoiding the inevitable emotion might help you get to be in charge of your brain, and you got to be willing to feel those uncomfy feelings, okay? I got an email from a girl who just couldn’t even make herself start the mission paper work process. She said I I just can’t make myself I, I feel like I don’t have time I feel like I’m not gonna be able to do it. Like it just feels like a lot. Like coming from my perspective, it can especially if you’re going foreign. Like there’s like once you get your call and everything to your assignment, there’s just so much paperwork involved, right? And then we’ve got to do interviews and all of that, and your brain doesn’t want to do any of it. And so, we just got to decide, like, I am willing to feel emotion. And I can either feel it now, or I can feel it later. So the question becomes, do I want to feel the emotion of being bored, overwhelmed, confused? On the way to the getting what I want? Or do I want to feel bored, overwhelmed and confused and not take action towards the thing that I want? Because we’re gonna feel it either way. We’re gonna feel those emotions, our brains gonna come along for the ride. So I came up with a few steps over First, let me circle back to that girl. I was like, Listen, friend, it’s going to be tough, and you’re going to have to feel some things. But if you feel those things, you’re going to feel them. Either way, anytime you sit down, to start filling out that paperwork, and to open the mission portal, you’re going to feel it. So we can feel it today. Or you can feel it a week from today, where you can feel it a month from today, you’re not going to escape that feeling because your brain goes with you. Right? So I came up with some steps that might help. So number one, meet yourself where you are. And let me just go through the steps and then I’ll explain them to a little bit more. Number one, if you’re procrastinating, just meet yourself where you are, number two, be honest with yourself. Number three, says time to sit down and do the thing. Number four, expect expect the brain to freak out. And number five, honor what you are up for. So number one, what I mean by meet yourself where you are, is like, don’t judge the fact that you procrastinate. Like, just tell yourself of course, I’ve been procrastinating because it works. And sometimes I’m gonna want to procrastinate, I’m just going to, but I’m going to be intentional and understand what I’m doing. I’m choosing to not feel overwhelmed and stressed right now, knowing that I am for sure going to be feeling stressed and overwhelmed later. But I’m deciding that on purpose. So just meet yourself where you are. Number two, be honest with yourself. Is this something that you’re willing to feel emotion for? Like I work in this other program, be bold with God more, and I answer some like written questions in there. And people will be like, I’m working on my business. And I feel really overwhelmed and kind of confused and stressed a lot. And I just don’t know if I should continue on with this business. And I think this is where we just have to be honest with ourselves like, are you willing to feel those feelings because they are coming along? They’re coming along for the ride. So just be honest with yourself, maybe there’s some stuff that we want to just let go of. Maybe instead of just procrastinating and procrastinating and you know, kind of maybe eroding a little bit like that relationship that we have with ourselves. And because then we start judging ourselves for it. Maybe we just have to be like, Hmm, maybe this isn’t actually something that I want. And that’s totally fine. Okay. So be honest with yourself, if you’re willing to feel the fields. Number three, set a time to sit down and just do the thing. So like this girl I was talking to, like, your brain will hate this, by the way, right? You say Saturday, at this specific time, I am going to sit down and open the mission portal, your brain will hate it, it doesn’t even want to like set that because then we might have to follow through and feel all the uncomfy feelings. So make yourself set a time that you’re going to do the thing, okay? And then hold yourself to it. Okay, so you sit down. And then number four is expect your brain to freak out. Okay, this will happen, your brain will come out with all of the excuses, all of the things that you should be doing instead, all of the reasons that you, you know, it would be better if we did it a different time. That’s just what your lower brain is going to do. Okay, expect the freak out. Like, we can’t even decide ahead of time. Like I sort of know, I’m gonna have to feel bored, I’m going to have to feel stressed. I’m going to feel overwhelmed when I sit down to start my mission paperwork. And so we just plan on it, and then we can decide ahead of time, like, I’m gonna feel the feeling and do it anyway, because I’m either feeling that feeling now, or I’m going to feel that feeling later. Okay. The fifth thing that I want to make sure that we remember is to honor what you are up for. So

19:45 I am a firm believer that we know what’s best for ourselves, and how much we can manage and handle. And I mean, not only in the things that we’re doing right, but in the thoughts We’re trying to juggle and the emotions that we’re kind of feeling throughout the day, you only have like a certain amount that you can handle. And for me, it’s different than it is for you. And for your companion, it’s different than it is for you and for your roommate or for your boss, we’re all built differently. So, honor what you’re up for, like, sometimes on purpose, if we want to, and intentionally, we can choose to feel those emotions later. And I do this. I’m like, I’m going to just avoid this one for now. But for sure, I’m going to do that on Friday, I’m going to feel the thing. Okay. So remember, there’s nothing wrong with you. If you tend to procrastinate. It’s not a problem. It just actually shows us that your brain is working exactly the way it should. It’s trying to avoid future pain and conserve energy. That is amazing. Thanks, brain. Thanks so much for looking out for me. But when you’re ready, you can try these five steps. If you’re ready to move on and feel the feelings. Number one, meet yourself where you are. Number two, be honest with yourself. If this is even something you’re willing to feel emotion for. Number three, set a time to sit down and do the thing. Number four, expect the brain freak out. And number five, just honor what you’re up for. And be intentional about that. All right, everyone. I hope that this helps you. I hope that you have the most amazing week, we will see you next time. Serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints can present a unique set of challenges. And many of those challenges you might not even see coming. So you’re gonna want a unique set of solutions. It’s easier than you think to overcome worry and anxiety, serve the successful mission you’ve always dreamed up and navigate your post mission experience with confidence. That is why I created some amazing free goodies that I’m sharing in my show notes. Maybe you’ll want to grab the free training for preparing missionaries, mic video course for RMS or maybe you and I should hop on a free strategy call. If you’re ready to take your preparedness to serve or your preparedness to come home to the next level. Then go grab one of those freebies. And in the meantime, no matter which part of the mission experience you are involved in. Just know that Jenny? The LDS mission coach is thinking about you every single day

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Hey! I'm Jennie - The LDS Mission Coach.

Preparing for, serving and coming home from an LDS Mission can present countless changes and transitions. I’ve seen these changes put missionaries at the mercy of their emotions and questioning their abilities. With the tools I teach, young adults empower themselves to navigate every moment of the mission experience with epic, unwavering confidence.

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