I told myself everyday, as I worked through a job I could not stand, that I would go home that night and make positive effort toward my goals. I would talk myself up on the drive home. I would tell myself
“It’s time to straighten up, time to focus on my college work and get a better job.”
But not too soon after I arrived home, I willingly become distracted. I pacified my real desire to succeed by telling myself that I would “do it later”. Most of the nights I surfed the web, with no real direction or purpose, and every night I would go to sleep, angry with myself, as I was forced to face the growing list of things that needed to be done, that should have been done, that I had put off.
It’s A Bad Habit To Have
I became good at pulling things off to a satisfactory level at the last minute. For that reason, it was never exceptional. I skated through college with an unimpressive C average. The stress of writing a ten page paper the night before it was due, into the early morning, would make me swear to myself that by the time the next paper came around I would be prepared to work ahead of time, and have it prepared before hand. I would have time to edit the work, and feel more confident about my grade as I turned it in.
How I actually changed
All the things I ever told myself to do never could persuade me to actually get the job done. For a long time I was convinced that I could only operate out of immediate necessity, that I would not be able to change my stripes. When it finally reached its breaking point, I had failed a class, and I was forced to face the truth. It takes time and gradual steps to change habits, and it goes by so much smoother than having to amend your behavior instantly.
I had to catch myself saying “I’ll do it later” and really challenge the truth of that statement. I forced myself to construct an argument for and against handling the issue now. I found that, if it could be done right away, it should be done right away. Just because it can be done later doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be done now.
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