Monday, August 23, 2010

Procrastination and Potato Chips

I am a procrastinator. There, I said it. No taking it back.

Webster’s dictionary says procrastination is to postpone something you dread. Here’s the silly part, I procrastinate doing the things I truly enjoy – writing, performing, singing – which makes no sense. If I’m going to put off the things I love, why can’t I procrastinate eating potato chips?

These things I enjoy so much (yet delay doing) are also my work. I guess I still struggle to see how something I love doing, something that makes me feel good to the core, can be called work, can be valued as work. Isn’t work supposed to be, well, work?

Not according to people in the know. Shakti Gawain, in her most excellent book Creative Visualization suggests, “You don’t have to exert effort to get where you want to go; you simply keep clearly in mind where you would like to go and then patiently, harmoniously follow the flow of the river of life until it takes you there.” In The Secret, there is one account after the other of living the life you desire easily, without effort, while enjoying the ride.

I believe this. In concept, it makes complete sense. Yet, that nagging voice in the back of my head keeps saying, “and what do you have to show for your efforts?” There’s the rub.

What I have to show is words, songs that dissipate into thin air, performances that, as soon as the curtain call is over, join the songs in the ether. I have nothing tangible to show for my efforts.

So, I procrastinate – which my synonym finder also calls delay, dawdle, dilly dally. Do I want to be a dilly dallier? I don’t think so.

I can dilly dally and do diddly, or do what I love and at least do something. Seems like I need to come to terms with the obvious fact that who I am and what I do cannot be measured in the tangible. My work cannot be held. But it can (and does?) have value (even if I never know what that value is).

I better go eat some potato chips and think on this awhile.


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