I have a huge problem with time-management. I am such a procrastinator, that I will spend more time researching solves for procrastination than on actually doing anything.
I’m also an “Away” person. That means that rewards don’t work for me. You could promise me a million dollars to clean that catbox, but I’m more likely to clean it if you were to remind me that if I DON’T clean it, the whole house is gonna stink and the cats are going to poop in my shoes.
“Away” people are all about prevention and pain. We won’t get off our butts and get something done unless Something Bad is looming over our heads and doing that one thing is the ONLY way to prevent the Something Bad from actually bonking us unconscious.
We’ve also learned over time that usually once the Something Bad actually happens, it’s not nearly as bad as we imagined. This experience has given us a very high pain threshold, as well as a strong ability to work miracles under pressure.
A better real life example might be a work assignment that has a deadline. Whether that deadline is two weeks or six months away, it is almost guaranteed that an Away person will be spending the night before the deadline working furiously at getting the assignment finished to keep the worst from happening – and that’s only if “the worst that could happen” is painful enough.
What’s painful enough? Being embarrassed in front of the entire staff during the meeting or presentation, possibly. Being fired, maybe. Likely, both.
There are so many situations in life that become painful, that the pain begins to feel normal. Most of us Away people end up living our lives in cycles of pain that we can’t seem get out of, because doing anything to change the situation is, well, more painful than staying in the pain we’re accustomed to.
Why are we like this? I don’t know. And not knowing may be my problem, because I have a scary little feeling that even if I did know the answer to that question, I may not have the ability to do anything to get out of it anyway. As an Away person, I’m more likely to wallow in the pain of knowing, because that’s just what I do. It’s easier than fixing it.
A few months ago, I embarked on a new strategy of using my own bad habits of procrastination and Away-ness against myself.
I quit my job.
I quit my job for a lot of reasons – it was a dead-end minimum wage job that paid my bills, but did nothing for my future. I liked the job enough to stay there for nearly 20 years, but only because I’d learned how to get by on the crap wages. There was a lot I couldn’t do that I wanted to, because there wasn’t enough money to pay for any extras. If I managed to save for any extras, I almost always regretted the loss of that money after I’d spent it.
I finally realized that if I stayed in that job, I would spend my last years wishing I’d done something more important to me.
I have no income, and very little savings left.
I did two things right ahead of time, and both of the those things are working against me right now.
The first thing I did was to take most of my savings and I pre-paid my rent for the entire year. Smart, right? Yes, it was. The idea was, that this way I’d have a little breathing room for my first year of “self-employment”.
Give an Away person “breathing room” and they will sit in that room and breathe. That’s what I’ve been doing with my time.
This is my ‘Get Off My Ass” time now. I have things to do, and no excuses left not to do them. My schedule for the week coming is simple: tomorrow I will be posting an article in “Pre-Paid Living” –>Next year’s budget. This is what I’m working for this year; next year’s expenses.
Monday, the post will be in the “Music” category: the song I’m recording to go up on iTunes and downloadable here as well.
Tuesday, I’ll be posting in “Photography”: my big project is the Faeries shoot – I’ll be posting the schedule for that.
Wednesday I’ll be opening up a new category – “Life-Long Learning”. This will detail the current courses I’m taking – the things I’m learning as I go, to make the different streams of income I’m developing flow regularly.
…cuz I’m a fearless, fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants kind of girl.