$780. That’s how much my Tuesday cost. Seven hundred and eighty dollars, and three hours out of my day.
I walked out of a meeting, smile on my face, ready to continue what had already been a great start to the day, and then I saw a boot on my front wheel.
Parking tickets. I might have had a few. Maybe three. Or four. Actually. . . five. Five tickets, one of which was still in my purse. Um. Oops. I guess the mental “fuck off” I sent the City of Sacramento when I got them didn’t make it to the right department on time.
Or did it?
The cost of that energetic message? So much more than the money I didn’t have. So, much more than the time spent in line, waiting. And on the street, waiting. And on the phone, waiting.
The cost of this waiting is high.
Procrastination. The art of later. This waiting, the kind born out of busy-ness, of avoidance, or boredom, or of fear, is unproductive.
This waiting costs us moments.
For three days the kids have asked to play a board game after dinner. I keep telling them we’ll do it, later, and then. . . we don’t, because homework, and sports and dinner and stories and bedtime all get priority.
I have e-mails sitting in my personal inbox that I flagged a year ago and still haven’t finished reading. I have ideas in my head for my vision board that I still haven’t written, and definitely still haven’t been manifested.
I have items in my online shopping carts that spend more time in my ad feed than they ever will in my house. I have friends I haven’t called back, shit around the house that’s waiting to be fixed, laundry waiting to be housed, piles waiting to be sorted, appointments I’ve thought about and haven’t made, and trips I saved and never took.
I got those parking tickets, and like I’ve been doing for my entire adulthood, I put them in financial purgatory with the rest of my proof of privilege.
Here’s the deal folks— procrastination is like telling your lightweight opponent to hit the gym, grow a six pack, learn to throw a punch, and then come back for a TKO and a heavyweight championship belt.
Your opponent, in whatever costume the experience has chosen, didn’t just walk away and die quietly in its sleep. The energy of each experience grows, and continues to exist until it is complete. Until it is dealt with, resolved, faced, passed on, released, forgiven, acknowledged, accepted, worked through, or paid.
It is not a man-eating plant that you forgot to feed and water. Its food is you, and your energy, and it will just keep growing.
Hiding under the covers does not make it go away. Covering your eyes does not make it go away. Turning your back does not make it go away. You might not be able to see it, but it sure as FUCK sees you, and honey, I guarantee you it’s coming back as soon as you settle. When you stop moving, finally, it’ll find you. Wherever you are, whatever you do, there it will be, until you create an ending.
And the longer you wait to create this ending, the greater the price.
My kids won’t want to play board games forever. If I don’t play now, when will I? If I haven’t read those emails in over 12 months, maybe they aren’t something I should have taking up space in my working memory.
If I want to write my own future, I might want to pick up the pen.
I can handle my shit now, or I can keep waiting. I can say I’ll do it later. I can keep inviting in a bigger, stronger, more complicated problem, or I can just address it while in its infancy.
The choice of when to do the work, and of how much, and of what kind, is mine. It is also yours, in your life. Be aware of what you’re inviting into your future— do the work when you can, and have grace when you can’t.
Enjoy the moment for the moment it is, and for fuck’s sake, pay your damn parking tickets.
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