Many of you have been following this blog long enough to know that 2012 was my year of Anti-Procastination.
It originally started out just to be something that would help me get little annoying things done around that house that always seemed to get put off.
And it did.
But it turned into so much more than that.
I learned a lot about myself.
I realized just how short this life is, and that the time to be busy about the Lord's work is now. I don't want to hang my head in shame when I meet the Lord and have to apologize for all the time I wasted.
One very huge life-goal that my husband and I saw come to fruition was the production of our first CD.
We realized that we could keep saying forever, “We really need to do that,” but that it would never actually happen unless we…you know…did it.
We knew it would be an expensive and time-consuming project, but it was a good thing we didn't know just how expensive and time-consuming it would be, or we might have continued to make excuses for putting it off.
Right away, I took the first step and booked an appointment with the recording studio so that there would be no backing out or changing our minds.
Then the real work began. I'll spare you all the details, but I will say this – if you want to do anything for God's glory, don't try to keep it a secret like we did. Both my husband's parents and mine have always bugged us to record a CD, and we thought it would be special if we could keep it a secret and give it to them as a Christmas gift. The problem was that as soon as we embarked on this project, the devil did everything he could to stop us. From scratchy voices the week of recording, to a broken down van when it was time for us to make the 1 hour trip to the studio, to lots of red tape with copyright permissions, there were a lot of obstacles to overcome. I wished people knew about our project so they cold help us pray about it!
Anyway, I'm so thankful it's finally done now!
We had only one goal in mind when we recorded this CD – to use our talents to bring glory to God. 100% of the proceeds will go directly toward expenses for our next recording.
We'd love for you to purchase our CD for yourself, give it away as a gift, and help us spread the word about another resource for Christ-honoring music.
We pray it will be a blessing to you!
I am always trying to think of unique ways to reach out to our neighbors. We never seem to be outside at the same time, which means that if we're going to talk to them and befriend them, it has to be a purposeful effort.
I have thought many times about baking something and taking it over to them, but I was afraid they might not want to eat it. (You know how it is – you don't particularly want to eat something that came from a kitchen you've never seen either. You don't know how clean it is in there, or whether the person licked the spoon and then kept stirring with it.)
I couldn't think of any other way to get over there and let them know that I cared about them, though. I finally thought, “Who cares if they don't eat it? I have to do something to show them I care about them and ultimately to show them the love of Christ.”
So I headed to the kitchen and baked up some pumpkin chocolate chip muffins. The kids and I wrapped them up and walked to both of the neighbor's houses to hand deliver them.
One neighbor told me that his wife doesn't like pumpkin. The other neighbor told me that everybody had gone to the beach for the week and might not get back in time to eat them before they went bad.
But you know what? That really didn't bother me. I wasn't worried about the muffins. I just wanted them to know I care about them.
What can you do to reach others with the love of Christ? This is one thing in which I believe we all procrastinate. The devil wants to make sure we will always have some kind of excuse.
Stop procrastinating. Get to baking, write a note, or just plain get over to your neighbor's house and say “Is there anything you need? I'll be happy to help you with something or let you borrow something you need.”
Jesus is coming soon, and I don't want to be ashamed when He asks me why my neighbors never knew about Him.
We people like to focus on the negative sometimes, don't we? When a restaurant gives us poor service, we take the time to write them an email or call to complain.
We will be sure to let others know what they did wrong, but sadly it's not nearly as often that we take the time to tell someone “Great job!”
If we're willing to take time out of our day to complain about something, let's make the time to be an encouragement to someone.
Find someone who does a lot of thankless, behind-the-scenes work at church or work, and let them know you've taken note and appreciate what they do.
Encourage someone who may be in the spotlight and everything they do is under scrutiny and is often criticized. Build them up with your words while others may be tearing them down.
Seek out someone who is suffering through a trial and let them know that you're praying for them.
There are so many opportunities to be a blessing that we tend to overlook. I challenge you to find one person today that you can be a blessing to through an encouraging word.
If you’re just joining the Anti-Procrastination challenge, you can take a look at all of the previous challenges I've posted here. You may also want to subscribe to email updates or follow me on Facebook to receive each new challenge!
I'm sure that for a lot of you, putting up fall decor is not something that would cause you to procrastinate. There are so many talented people out there when it comes to that kind of thing, and you enjoy it so much that putting it off is not even a temptation.
I'm a little different. I love looking at the pretty decor, but I hate the process of actually putting it up.
I have a hard time figuring out how to make stuff look good in the first place. Then there's the matter of the messes the kids are going to make while I'm fiddling with decorating, the laundry that needs to be folded, the dishes that need washed (again!), and the diapers to change. If I start decorating, all the other work is just going to pile up and I'm not even going to enjoy the decor because of looking at all the messes. See? I get overwhelmed just thinking about it.
But, like I said, I do love getting to look at the pretty decor, and I get really sad whenever I realize that a season has just passed and I never even got out my decorations. Since hiring someone to come decorate for me isn't exactly an option, what am I to do?
I figured I would start with something simple. Candles are easy, as well as wreaths if they're already made. I also keep ready-made faux floral arrangements for the different seasons so that I can just set them out. I may not be able to arrange a mantle (or fantle), change out all the pictures on the walls, and put fall accents in every room of the house, but I can do a few quick and easy things that will still make a difference and set the mood for the new season a little bit.
I've already been burning a fall candle every day, and today I pulled out my wreaths and hung them up. That took all of 60 seconds! Yup. I have no excuse to procrastinate on that one.
If you're a little like me and don't really enjoy the actual process of decorating, my challenge to you is to think of at least one thing that you can do that's quick and easy. You'll be glad you did!
If you're the type that loves to decorate and could do it all day long, I've got a different challenge for you. But make sure you clear your schedule because it involves coming over to my house. 🙂
Something struck me last night as I was thinking about this Anti-Procrastination Challenge. Part of what makes it so easy to procrastinate is that the only person to whom I'm accountable is myself.
If I need to get the refrigerator cleaned out, but I don't get to it, it's no big deal. I tell myself, “I'll get to it tomorrow,” and go on my merry way.
If there's something that needs to be done, and I've made a commitment to another person about it, I am much more likely to get it done, lest I be embarrassed about breaking my promise.
I started thinking of all the things that I have really given my best effort to do without procrastinating, and, for the most part, they all have one element in common: a commitment to another person.
Part of the reason I decided to publicly blog about my personal challenge of anti-procrastination was to give me more motivation and give me a little extra push to stop procrastinating.
I've been trying to brainstorm ways that I can make even more commitments to help myself get even more done. One of the easiest things I have done that I need to keep in mind in the future is to tell my kids of my intentions. If I tell my kids that I will take them to the playground, they will not let me forget. If I tell them that I need to defrost the freezer, they will be sure to remind me. If I tell them that we're going to invited someone over for dinner, they will make sure I remember. (Better yet, if I'm going to invite someone for dinner, I need to go ahead and make the commitment with the person I'm intending to invite. Then I'm definitely forced into following through with my intentions of being more hospitable.)
I'll be trying to think of more ways to help myself be even more productive by determining ways to make myself more accountable to people.
Maybe that sounds like a crutch to self-discipline, and maybe it really is, but I realize that's what it's going to take to help push myself to get more done.
If I want to do something for someone, I'm going to go ahead and tell them I will. I'll be pushed to follow through or face the embarrassment of breaking a promise.
I'm going to tell my kids of my plans for the day more often; the persistent reminders will help me carry out those plans.
What about you? Will a stronger level of commitment to others help you be more productive? Try to think of some ways you can help yourself get more done by being accountable to others more often.
I saw on Pinterest forever ago that if you rub waxed paper over your faucets it will keep the faucets from getting those ugly water spots on them.
I cannot tell you how many times I have wiped down my sinks and faucets and thought, I really should try that waxed paper thing. Instead of just going and getting the waxed paper and trying, I just think it every time. Why do I procrastinate about everything?!!!
Anyway, so today I finally decided to go do it, and lo and behold, I had no waxed paper.
I tried checking the internet to see if there was anything else I could use, and I found something that said to use rubbing alcohol.
Here is my bathroom faucet immediately after cleaning it with alcohol:
(By the way, it is incredibly hard to take a good picture of a shiny faucet in a dimly lit bathroom. You'll just have to use your imagination, okay?)
Then, I purposely splashed water all over the faucet. Most of it was repelled by the alcohol and ran right off.
Here's what it looked like after it dried. I think it looks just as good as when I first cleaned it with the alcohol.
Time will tell how long I can go before I need to re-treat it with alcohol, but I can't imagine the waxed paper trick lasts forever either.
It's time for you to take your turn in this challenge! Go shiny up those faucets! If anybody tries the waxed paper method, I'd love to hear how it works for you. Or, if you have any other ingenius ideas for keeping your faucets shiny, I'd love to hear about those too!