by Dr. Charles Stanley
Wednesday June 21, 2006
Underlying Causes of Procrastination
Ever wonder why you do not make that crucial decision in your life? Or what keeps you from following through on chores at home or projects at work? The most common excuse for procrastinating is, “I’m too busy right now.” The real reasons for repeated delays come not from an outside source but from our own thinking. Procrastination occurs when we want to avoid discomfort or self-doubt.
Let’s consider two areas where Christians commonly procrastinate. The first is Scripture reading. For some of us, uncertainty about where to begin or what method to follow can make us feel inadequate. To avoid this uncomfortable emotion, we may stop trying to figure it out. Or, if we do meditate on a Bible passage, the Holy Spirit might point out ungodly attitudes and behaviors in our lives that the Lord wants to change. Then emotions of embarrassment, inadequacy, or shame can surface. To get rid of such uneasy feelings, we simply stop reading.
Avoidance is also too common a practice in the area of tithing. Giving generously to God usually means cutting back on some areas of spending. That can make us feel insecure because we think, How will I live without ___? Most of us wish we had more disposable income, not less; so our mind plays a little trick and tells us, It will be easier to do it next week. But seven days later, it is the same story.
Think about the things you’ve been putting off. Ask yourself, How competent do I feel to do those tasks? and What negative emotions do I feel in connection with them? Then pray for God to direct you.
Celebrate Fathers this month. Discover what our heavenly Father expects of dads and how He equips them to raise godly sons and daughters in Dr. Stanley’s series “How-To’s for Fathers.”
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