I always thought that I was a procrastinator. My husband would often ask in frustration, "Why do you wait until the last minute?" And he was right. I did wait until the last minute. But I knew that was when I did my best work. If I finished early, I would go over and over my project, until I was finally finished - yes, that's right - right before the project was due. Now, I know that I was percolating an idea which for me is an important part of my creative process. I like to think about the project. I like to imagine what it will look like and what steps I will take to complete the story or painting. I love to do research before I begin and to talk to others about what I am planning. Then when the time is right, I begin, I work, I create, I revise and I celebrate the completion of something that I have been thinking about for a long time.
Procrastination is normal for many people. I procrastinate sometimes. Usually, it is when I am afraid I don't know what I am doing. Instead of working, I call friends, browse through blogs, go for coffee, walk the dog, etc. I'm not thinking about what I am going to work on when I am procrastinating but rather avoiding what I know I have to do. There is a big difference in the two. Procrastination is avoiding the creative process, percolating is thinking about and visualizing what your are going to do before you do it.
There are many simple ways to overcome procrastination. Next Wednesday we will explore some of them. But this week it is important to recognize whether you are percolating or procrastinating. Awareness is always key to making changes in anything that is standing in your way of building a creative life. You cannot change something that you are not aware is happening.
Do you procrastinate or percolate? I would love to hear your thoughts either by leaving a comment or by emailing me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Hope to hear from you soon!
Remember: When you share your dreams and talent with the world, magic happens. Let the magic begin!