Overcoming procrastination in one easy step

Today, I set my phone alarm for 2 PM and then reset it for 2:15 PM and then hit “Snooze” once before I finally did it.

Did what?  I called the dentist and a doctor and made appointments.  The appointments weren’t even for me, so there should have been no reason for me to procrastinate.  The lady at the dentist’s office is so kind and remembers my name and we’ve even had a friendly chat in the office after an appointment, so there’s no reason I should dread calling her.

That’s just weird, right?  Yet, I wonder . . . why can’t I just email everyone so I never have to make phone calls?

During my work online, I saw someone complain that she missed a party because the invitation came via email and she asked everyone, “Do you check your email every day?” and I thought everyone would answer like I would which is, “Yes, I check my email forty-seven times a day.”  Right?  Doesn’t everyone?  Don’t you pick up your phone during commercials or while you’re waiting for a pot of water to boil or at red lights (WHAT?!) and check your email?  (Most people claimed they did not check their email every day.)

Nothing exciting is ever in my email “box.”  And yet, I obsessively check.

The thing I don’t do is check my actual mailbox outside on the curb.  A week will pass and I’ll think, Oh yeah.  The mail.  Then I find myself excavating an overly-full mailbox and come inside with an armful of mail.  Then I sort most of it into the recycling bin.

How many of these pointless tasks fill up my day?  My days are pretty much a mosaic of repetitive, boring tasks.  I spend time doing these dumb things when I could be napping.  I mean, READING.

Sometimes I think I should get back to actually writing–not just this blog (but also this blog) and then I think there’s no shame in just being a reader.  Why must I be a writer?  I can just devote my life to being an excellent reader.

But then I think that my brain will die along with my body and then no one will have the benefit of my vast knowledge and insight and opinion and story.  So maybe I should write before I die.  Because obviously writing is an easier way to preserve my brain than cryonics and cheaper, too.  My brain is already losing its clarity and sharpness.

My husband tells me things which I promptly forget.  For instance, a couple of weeks ago he told me this long explanation about going out to dinner with another couple (and their little kids) and I remembered pretty much nothing of it and so yesterday I asked him about it and he said, “Well, if you remember, I told you . . . ” and I said, “I DO NOT REMEMBER.  That’s why I’m ASKING you to refresh  my memory.”  These are the kinds of conversations we have after 29 years of marriage.  That and each time I say something, he says, “Huh?” and then answers me.  And every time he says something, I say, “Huh?” and then answer him.

It’s hilarious, only not at all.  But hilarious.

This morning at 7:10, I was sound asleep until he said to me, “There’s someone knocking!” and so I sprang out of bed, disoriented, wondering what this had to do with me. Nevertheless, I stumbled to the closet and found a robe and checked each bedroom and found every kid in my house sound asleep (even the one who should have been in class and so I woke him and said, “Do you mean to be asleep right now?” and he said, yes, he had a quiz he was unprepared for and so he skipped class and I thought, well, he’s in college and what college student among us hasn’t skipped a seven o’clock class?  Not my problem).

I went back to my bedroom and tried to understand why my already-awake spouse thought waking me up to deal with the phantom door-knocking made any sense.  He told me that since he wasn’t dressed, he didn’t want to be surprised by our daughter coming in without knocking but . . . there WAS (supposedly) knocking.  (By the way, he realized that the knocking sound was actually the half-grown cat thrashing about like a lunatic in the bathtub.)  And I told him that our daughter no longer knocks on our door.  If she needed me, she would text me, as any rational person with an iPhone would do in this day and age.

(And hour later, after I’d fallen back to sleep, my daughter did text me to tell me she had a sore throat and we went back and forth a few times and I was on the phone with the school to call in her absence and she suddenly remembered that she “had” to go to school and I asked no questions and just said, “Okay,” and tried to go back to sleep.)

The days when I’d open my eyes to a tiny person standing bedside, peering at me and Momming me (“Mom, mom, mom, mom, mom”) are long gone.  However, they have been replaced by the days of a husband waking me up to deal with imaginary noises.

To be fair, it was only one day.  And I’m not bitter.  By tomorrow, I won’t even remember this happened at all.

Procrastination and forgetfulness shall follow me all the days of my life.


(p.s.  The One Easy Step to Overcoming Procrastination?  Set your iPhone alarm and when it rings, just do it.  You’re welcome.)



One thought on “Overcoming procrastination in one easy step

  1. This is SO funny – and SO your household. Reminds me to not feel guilty for those times I think I ought to write you a letter and send it via the post office. I’m so relieved now.


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