“The best way to get something done is to begin.”
I frequently fall subject to the clutches of procrastination, even when I am consciously
aware of the fact that I am doing so. In my experience, procrastination easily slips into the guise of being “burnt-out,” because I have such an active lifestyle. I often find myself frustrated that I have been going and going for hours on end, and rather than pushing myself to do an assignment or write an email or look for internships, I make the decision to relax. Now, while I am a firm believer in the motto of “work hard, play hard,” I like the philosophies touched on in “The Important Habit of Just Starting” regarding delayed gratification versus instant gratification, and the idea that procrastination is causing harm to our future self.
I love the idea expressed in “10 Entrepreneurs Share Their Secrets to Staying Focused” that emphasizes the importance of actively directing your thoughts. I am a big believer in meditation, as well as the psychological aspect of success, and I think that being present in a moment without letting other thoughts and distractions affect you is a huge component of actively enjoying and taking control of one’s life. That said, this is a feat that I have not exactly mastered yet; I constantly worry and overthink about the most insignificant, and often potentially toxic, topics. This frequently distracts me from what could have been a joyful or productive moment. I think mental health issues also play a huge part in success, not in the sense that they inhibit us, but in the idea that if we give our illness too much power over us, it can become a slippery slope that prevents us from feeling the way and accomplishing the things that we want to. For me personally, it is and must be an active fight with my anxiety and depression to be who I want to be and do what I want to do. I liked that Oliver Kharraz used his experience in a Jesuit monastery to demonstrate the idea of pushing your mind and directing your thoughts in a positive and beneficial way.
Ultimately, I think it is important to set goals and reminders for yourself (I LIVE for my planner!), however I also believe that the mental battle against one’s impulses and negative thoughts plays a huge role in success. This semester, I hope to better train myself to believe in the possibility of my success, and to consider the direct correlation between the amount of energy I put into something and the benefits I will reap from it.