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Procrastination or Planting Seeds?

Alesha Sevy-Kelley

Red Mountain in Ivins Utah. New growth growing in old growth.

I’ve got an issue with procrastination; literally. I procrastinate, forget what I’m doing, get distracted with new ideas, run after the red ball… But I realize lately that maybe I have been planting seeds - that maybe we are all planting seeds. Sometimes you plant a seed and it comes up; then there are those times you plant seeds that seem like duds - and then they choose to sprout the following spring of their own accord. 

Ideas are like seeds. Sometimes following through on an idea comes quickly and easily, and other times - for me many, many times, a great idea requires a bit more energy to produce little idea saplings, and it’s not something that can just pop into existence without a lot of work, worry, concentration. I have spent a lifetime tossing fun, creative, impossible, fantastical ideas into this subconscious knapsack “until such a time that I can really cultivate and nurture this idea into existence” and for much of my life, the time for that just was not at the moment of the idea. Until lately, much of my life force was focused on family, attempting to earn enough to pay the bills and catching up. Always catching up.

When I reflect on the past couple of decades I have been adulting, I just have to admit that I have never actually caught up. Dammit. Not one time have I sat back in my clean house with freshly laundered everything, looking at my completed project list and felt that sense of finally… I am DONE! NOW I feel that satisfaction. NOW I am ready to sow those seeds of love I’ve been procrastinating. 

As I find my life slowing down, I am delighted to see ideas or seeds that I planted in my heart long ago starting to sprout up right in my face - things I’d forgotten about or wanted to keep in the background (so I could catch up!) have been waving their little polka dotted tentacles at me, urging me to notice and tend to them. It’s like they are saying, “it’s time for me now! You planted me and now I need your attention and nurturing because I am determined to grow whether you are ready or not!”

And…. as these seedlings miraculously shoot out into my mind, I can’t help but think... Wait, little sprouts, please give me a minute to care about setting my office up properly! I just need to finish this client project! And I’d love to get some things planted in the yard - and how will I complete my projects for my nieces and nephews birthdays? I haven’t caught up!

Spring has never waited for me to be ready for it, and apparently when I plant a seed right in the center of my heart, I don’t have control over when it feels ready to sprout. I love that about creativity and nature. And to be honest, I am really relieved to feel this sense of urgency to create and bring into being ideas I have held onto for decades, even though I’m not caught up. 

Maybe a life of purpose is also a life where I will never catch up. I am working to be comfortable with this. I’m working to reframe the concept of procrastination into more acceptance of my desires to slow down and be okay where I am. Maybe that sense of “I’ll rest when I’ve earned the right” is an old belief I can work to stop believing… Because maybe living a life of purpose means juggling many meaningful experiences, creating a multitude of things for sharing and for personal enjoyment, buying more art supplies even when I haven’t cracked open the last batch and spending an afternoon doing yoga in the backyard  - even when I have not caught up. 

Though life may feel like a hamster wheel, I am working to set my own pace, and always planting seeds. With seeds come weeds, and I heard that if we can’t smoke ‘em, we should probably weed ‘em - so - will I ever catch up? Nah… I’m pretty sure I won’t. But I can still crack open a cold beer and make a weed pulling evening out of it and enjoy the earth and the sunlight as I go. I guess I’m pretty lucky that way <3




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