Is It Worth It?
It’s easy to find yourself asking if something is worth it. Not trying to get too existential here, mostly focusing on tasks.
You can easily misconstrue laziness with tiredness, especially last year with so many people stuck at home. After working a long day, doing dishes, cooking a meal, or more likely all of those combined in one evening, can make it difficult to fit anything else in. Maybe due to the tiredness, you’d rather call for takeout, especially if you have a family to cook for. Again, with quarantined times and restaurants offering services they may not have before, it can be quite a temptation. This is worlds different than making a conscious decision to stay up late when you have early morning plans and cancel because you are too tired. Although the body and mind would likely be tired, you’ve chosen the lazy path by purposely giving yourself nothing to do. And for what exactly? The pleasure of being in control of when you go to bed?
It’s easy to fall into bad routines, especially ones that make us inadvertently lazy. Scrolling on your phone for a few minutes before bed could quickly turn into 30 minutes or longer. The way we communicate now has affected how engaged people are in their own conversations. A simple text message that would read, “I love you,” has transformed into “ILY” or even as thoughtless as a heart emoji. It might just be a lack of giving a shit.
Defining laziness can be tough because there are so many factors to consider. There are generational, occupational, geographical, and sleep schedule differences to name a few. Perhaps you notice how it doesn’t matter what day it is, your grandmother is up at 6am starting the day while maybe you normally get up at 9 or 10 to get ready for your job that starts at 12. There you can see a generation, occupation, and sleep schedule contrast. Although most grandmothers probably aren’t racking up forty hours.
If you practice good habits, laziness can be a thing of the past. Try to identify bad habits in your life and nail down whether they affect laziness. Consider what a bad habit is as well. An easy one to address for most people is home cleanliness. Although the tidiness of the entire home may be daunting, starting with smaller tasks can help benefit the big picture. A good example is dishes. If you are the kind of person (guilty!) who stacks un-rinsed dishes in the sink after using them, try making the small change of giving them a hefty rinse. This will allow the process to be much easier for when you do get to washing them. After making this adjustment, go for washing the dish, drying, and putting it away after use. It may seem silly but taking simple steps towards a routine can combat laziness and that awful smell coming from your kitchen.
A good habit to cement within yourself is honoring your word. Had you honored your early morning plans, a more productive day may have occurred. If you get a few good weeks of dish rinsing and washing, you may notice an optimism boost. You may then start to question: is it worth it or would it just be easier to do it the way you did before? Stick to your word and prove to yourself that this minor life adjustment is essential. Try to imagine what the kitchen would be look like if you weren’t cleaning and putting things away. Take that anxiety and let it push you to combat laziness. Don’t get crazy though, those walls don’t need bleaching.
Perfectionism is not necessarily a habit but can negatively affect your drive. Ultimately doing something risks failing at it and as a perfectionist failing is catastrophic. On the other hand, sometimes the magnitude of completing tasks can explode with massive anxiety resulting in never starting said tasks at all. This is an example of anxiety and paranoia not necessarily laziness. You have to allow yourself to fail because guilt is not a productive option.
It can be easy to make promises to others because you don’t like disappointing them, but you often neglect promises to yourself. You have to remember that you are just as deserving as the individuals you make promises to. The old saying “people don’t change” may be true but taking a different prospective and some initiative can help enormously with conquering laziness.
Taking on too much at once and overexerting yourself can result in demotivation. It’s hard to find a starting point when your to-do list has 50 bullet points right? When it comes to your job, you have to do what you have to do. However starting with condensed goals for your home life, cleanliness, writing, and other productivities can ease size of the workload. For example, the kitchen is always an easy place to start: there’s always a mess to clean up, dishes, cooking, etc. Get in a routine of keeping that space in a way that comforts you when you enter. You could keep a list on the fridge for daily or weekly challenges. Sometimes word association can help addressing the laziness and anxiety; using phrases like “challenge” can be more positive and uplifting than a “chore.” The sound of the word “chore” sends most of us back to living at home days doing household chores with siblings.
Fear can also contribute to laziness, but as long as it is not excessive, maybe fear or anxiety is all it is. A good example is the art of looking for a job. It’s good to be consistent and current with today’s way of doing things, but you can’t let the anxiety completely encompass yourself. Don’t let fear of rejection or humiliation stand in the way of your well being, success, or potential savings. If you currently have a job but looking for better gainful employment, you may not have it as bad as say someone struggling to find something before rent is due. It may seem unfair to do so but you can use other’s turmoil as motivation for yourself. It’s the age old phrase you’ve heard time and time again, “there are starving kids in ‘XYZ’ country.” The lesson can be read as “don’t waste your food, because there are people in the world who don’t have food at all.”
A note from the author:
Hey folks, again, I’m not a doctor or mental health professional. These writings and examples stem from my experiences of laziness, anxiety, and paranoia. They are my personal suggestions for things that have worked in my life. Thank you for reading, stay safe out there!