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Don’t Procrastinate. Practice Self Discipline

We all know what procrastination is. It’s an avoidance pattern. It’s not something you just picked up. It’s something you’ve had for a very very very long time. It’s almost always rooted in fear. Fear of the outcome, fear of failure, and the thought that in a future life experience you’re going to have the motivation to do what you don’t want to do right now. It’s categorically false. If you don’t want to do it now you ain’t going to do it in the future. If anything, when you have to do it in the future you’re pressed against something called time, you’re pressed against something called pressure. It’s not as easy to do it. I’m guilty of it sometimes. My life gets so damn busy that I don’t procrastinate by choice. I do it because the last minute is all I had free to do it and I put myself in a bind sometimes but I’m always working on it to be more proactive about it and I hope you do the same. You got to really dive deep into why you procrastinate. It’s not just because you’re lazy. When people tell me they’re lazy I just say, “No man, you’re not lazy. You lack focus and motivation. You lack a sense of urgency.” So procrastination has nothing to do with laziness. It’s a deeper psychological thing that has to do with avoidance patterns. And then if you want to figure out why. Just look back into your history and find out when and where you started avoiding, why were you avoiding it, and you’ll realize that it happened at a time in your life when your brain was developing. So procrastination becomes a part of your life. You think it’s who you are but it really isn’t. It was just a maladaptive way of dealing with the anxiety you had around getting things done.

Persistence Pays Off

Persistence is what makes every single thing become real. Some people go and apply for a job and they send it off and they wait. Two weeks later I’m like, “What happened with the job?” “Well, they never called me.” “That’s it? You just applied and called?” and it’s like, “Yeah, I applied to five different places and no one’s calling me back.” I’ll tell you guys this. I teach at Saddleback as you guys know and I went through my emails and from 2015 I was emailing the department that I’m working in and various people there. Some of them are no longer there. Some of them passed away. Some of them, I just said, “I really want to teach in this department,” and it took me seven years of sending emails and going and being a guest speaker for free, and letting them know why I want to do this, to get a job interview. And it took me a year and a half after that to get a class assigned. And if somebody says, “Oh I applied to the college. I never got a call back. I really want to teach there. I had a reference letter and nobody called me,” I’m like, “Alright, that’s cool.” The persistence it takes to get things done in life has to be almost obsessive. And that’s with everything. The persistence we need in order to get things done has to be obsessive or else your life will not be what you want it to be like. Think about all the people that had ideas like the Starbucks, the KFCs, all these stories that are out there. It wasn’t just like, “Oh we created this brand man, it was a failure forever until it wasn’t.” Sometimes there’s artists – I like this artist I’m going to go watch in June. His name is Russ. Big in his own world and a lot of lot of diehard fans. He tours the world and he’s a big deal. He always talks. He has a book and he said, “Man, I used to do shows in front of 30 people, 40 people.” He makes all his own stuff and you know he he’d wake up in the morning hoping his songs have some views on them. There’s like 300 of them. He’s like, “yeah I’m doing it!” Now it’s millions and millions and millions of people and hundreds of million views on his songs and stuff like that. And if someone doesn’t know they’re like, “Oh this guy man, he worked his butt off for 10 years before anyone even knew who he was.” It’s all documented.

An Example of Persistence

Some of the stuff I’m doing with these talks, one of the goals that I have one day, so as you guys know, is to become a senior professional pickleball singles player which happens at the age of 50. So I’m 10 years away but I also want to travel across the country and I want to do personal development seminars and workshops. And when I have those pickleball tournaments I’m gonna find cities that I’m competing in and the few days before it I’m going to do a workshop out wherever I’m at. But this is my training ground. I have all these documented videos of me sitting in living rooms and talking fast and talking slow and being emotional and lecturing about personal development. And if one day I’m on one of those stages somewhere talking to people in a random state and they’re like, “Oh this guy’s such a good speaker,  or “It’s a really good talk and we should go sign up for whatever it is,” whatever happens in that world, someone sees it and they say, “Oh it’d be really nice to do what he’s doing, to go talk the way he talks.” Yeah it would be, but it’s like since 2013 I was talking to people, and that’s what it takes sometimes to get really good at something. I hope you understand that because if you don’t you’re going to fail at what it is you want to do.

Self-discipline is key to Success

This one’s interesting because people think that if they don’t want to do something today because they’re tired or they just don’t feel like it, that sometime in the future they’re going to all of a sudden have the motivation and the energy and the enthusiasm to get it done. I want you to know that is categorically false. There is no such thing as that future moment is better than this future moment at this current moment. It doesn’t exist and people that don’t have discipline keep postponing what needs to be done to the time that they think they will. I did this talk for our program participants this morning and I told them, “Hey, there is a bunch of stuff that you need to do right now that you’re not doing,” and obviously there is. And you know what’s preventing them from doing it? “I just don’t feel like it. I’m tired. I don’t want to be here,” but in their mind they’ve already made an agreement, a false agreement that when they leave these types of structured settings and these types of programs, that then and there they will start to become self-disciplined. And when they go there and realize that without having the person to say, “Hey wake up in the morning, get in the van, go to treatment, let’s go to the grocery store, let’s go to a meeting at night,” when you don’t have that person telling you all those things and pretty much on some level requiring you to do those things you think you’re going to do it on your own?

From my experience those who can’t do it now can’t do it later. So if you can’t do certain things in your life right now and you think in the later time you’re going to do it, not if you’re physically injured, if you have a broken leg and I’m saying, “go out for a walk,” and you’re like, “well I can’t do it now but when it heals I can,” that’s different. But the things that you can do right now, if you’re not doing them and you think that in the future you will, you’re lying to yourself. I told those kids, the program participants, “Some of you might say how dare this guy tell me that in the future when I’m out of this place I won’t live my life and do the things I want to do? I’ll show him.” So if you go out there and do what you got to do and come back a year later and say, “Hey, you remember you told me when I’m not in sober living or structured living I’m not going to be able to do well? Well, I wake up, I go to school. I go to work, I do this, I do that, and I just want to let you know that you were wrong.” You know what I would say? “I’m so freaking happy to hear that. I’m happy to hear that you figured it out and you got your life together. It’s awesome to see that you’re one of a thousand people that wasn’t able to do it here but able to do it then. So congratulations on being a unicorn and proving me wrong. And keep it up!” That’s exactly what I would say, because the statistics say, the relapse rates say if you don’t do it now you’re not going to do it later. And that’s a choice again.

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Are you in recovery but not making progress? Recovery is not only possible but attainable, and it all begins with reaching out for assistance. By addressing both addiction and mental health issues, individuals can break free from the cycle of despair and embark on a path to a healthier, more fulfilling life. Contact Buckeye Recovery Network today and initiate your journey to recovery and improved mental health. Our dedicated team of professionals is here to guide and support you every step of the way.

Today is going to be the best day of your life.

Kelsey Gearhart

Director of Business Development

Kelsey carries multiple years of experience working in the substance abuse and mental health treatment field. Her passion for this field comes from her personally knowing recovery from addiction.

Prior to Buckeye she held titles of Recovery Coach, Operations Director, and Admissions Director. Kelsey was brought on at Buckeye Recovery as the Director of Business Development. She has a passion for ensuring every individual gets the help that they need, and does so by developing relationships with other providers.

Kelsey also oversees our women’s sober living environments – The Chadwick House for Women. She is committed to creating a safe, nurturing, and conducive environment for all women that walk through the doors of Chadwick.