I will call my parents later.
Next week I will start eating better.
Tomorrow I'm going to get rid of clutter.
In a month I will begin looking for another job.
Later. Later. Later.
Someday we are going to run out of LATER and desperately wish we had done it sooner.
I was inspired by Liz Murray at the All Minds Matter Conference I attended this week. Liz is an amazing story as she went from being homeless to going to Harvard. I can't even begin to adequately share all that she encountered, but the point that kept coming back to me was Liz talking about later.
When her mom was in the hospital with AIDS, Liz visited often for awhile and then other things were going on and she decided she would go visit her mom LATER. When Liz's mom died, she calculated that it had been over a month since she had been to the hospital to visit.
Liz ran out of LATER.
Then Liz challenged all of us to stop putting things off, to change LATER to NOW.
I know, I know. It's easier said than done. But is it?
It's all in the priorities we have and the way we spend our time. I think what happens sometimes is that we go through the motions of our day. We go from one day to the next and just follow the same old routine. We don't check in with ourselves. We don't take the time to reflect and think about how we're living our lives. We don't think we have the power to change things or we figure we'll just do it later.
Stop. It's time to take control. Answering these four questions might give you the NOW you need.
1. What is one thing you keep putting on the back burner?
2. Why does that keep happening?
3. What would it mean to you to start doing that one thing today?
4. How are you going to make it happen?
I kept putting writing on the back burner. I told myself that eventually I would do it but not now. It happened, because I was afraid to put myself out there. What if no one read my blog? What if people hate it? What if it doesn't resonate with anyone? I was definitely getting in my own way with a lot of head trash.
So, one day I decided to make a commitment to my writing. I decided that instead of saying I'm going to be a writer someday, I woke up one morning and said, "I'm a writer." I even have business cards to prove it, so there's no going back now. I'm making it happen by writing everyday. I might not have a blog post everyday, but I'm writing. I'm writing in my journal, I'm doing writing exercises, and I'm jotting down ideas. I'm doing it everyday.
I finally took a stance with myself. Writing is how I eventually will make my living. I put together a business plan. I know it's a process, and I know it takes time. But I also know if I had not finally stopped saying LATER that I would still be in wishing and wondering, wondering and wishing.
I challenge you to answer the four questions for yourself. See what you come up with and begin taking a step in the direction you are meant to go. It's time for you to do something NOW instead of LATER.
I'm a lover of life, an eternal optimist, and I have an intense desire to add value through simple living and positive vibes.