Health Matters

Wellbeing and procrastination

Does our wellbeing depend on our ability to manage procrastination? I believe it does. Our wellbeing interacts with a range of factors including physical exercise and nutrition. If we do not exercise and take care of our nutritional needs, then we could be a procrastinator.

A friend of mind has a high-level job and is very decisive in her decision-making. But recently she told me that one area of indecision is when it comes to physical exercise and her diet. I concluded that my friend has a passion for the work she does and that is why she is extraordinarily successful. But her passion fades when it comes to physical exercise and nutrition. Her success barometer then drops to the bottom. Physical exercise is not something she enjoys. She finds it monotonous. She thinks she has insufficient time to plan her meals for work. Her busy life has got in the way of her wellbeing.

Physical exercise keeps our weight under control, it can reduce blood pressure and keep us in a good mood. If you have a tendency for depression then a great way to improve your mood, your mental health, is to start a program of physical exercise.

The next step is to review your diet. The body copes better with physical exercise when nutritional needs are being met.

How procrastination works

Procrastination is all powerful. It redirects our interest to other things, causes us to put things on hold, or not do them at all. The delay factor. I know it well. You might plan to get up in the morning and go for a walk. However, it could be too cold, too hot, raining or you are too tired. It is delayed for another time.

If the power of procrastination takes over, everything changes. Physical exercise is put on hold. If it is a quick cup of coffee before heading off to work, you could end up feeling fatigued by mid-morning.

Procrastination and nutrition

There are times when procrastination with meal planning can cause us to grab a take-a-away. It might not be the best nutritional choice. My friend often skips lunch. She could go on like that for some time and not notice any difference to her wellbeing. But eventually her lack of nutritional food during the day will slow down her metabolism. The downside to this is that she will put on weight or find it harder to lose weight. Skipping meals can become a disruptive cycle that will affect our wellbeing.

Our wellbeing is dependent on choosing good wholesome foods that give us fuel for our body. It does not take too much effort to begin meal planning. But it does take discipline to keep it up. As I mentioned to my friend planning meals is not only good for you, but it will save time and money in the long run.

After writing a meal plan for the week it is time to write the shopping list. This way there is less wastage and food will not sit idle in the fridge. If it does, it will eventually end up in the bin.

My 10-minute rule

For myself I have put in place my 10-minute rule. It came to me recently when I had about 10 minutes before preparing dinner. I wanted to exercise but it would take longer than 10 minutes. However, I made a change and decided to exercise anyway, even if it was for 10 minutes. The 10 minutes turned into 20 minutes. I might have served up dinner 10 minutes later than planned, but I did make time to exercise.

empty road between trees
Got 10 minutes? If so, take a walk. But caution, it could take you longer!
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I thought the 10-minute rule was my invention. But when I looked on the internet, I found that others have thought of it as well. The concept behind the 10-minute rule is in the starting. If you start a task it is more than likely you will do it for longer than 10 minutes.

Take for example, if you are learning a new instrument, or writing an assignment, or having to do the dishes, or the housework and you find you are putting it off, doing other things. The term for it is procrastination. And you thought, like me, you were not a procrastinator!

With the 10-minute rule in action you decide to do the task for just 10 minutes. Then before you know it you have been doing the task for 20-30 minutes, or longer.

Students know all about the power of procrastination. The task is to write an assignment but there are other more interesting tasks to do. Such as phoning a friend, making a coffee, or meeting a friend for coffee, cleaning out the fridge, or baking a cake!

What I am demonstrating is the power of procrastination pulls us away from doing what is our most important task or activity at the time. Procrastination is a powerful enemy when it comes to our wellbeing.

If we put off that walk, put off planning our meals and eating unhealthy food we can put on weight. Just like the COVID_19 environment did to many of us last year. Many of us became COVID Cuddly.

Putting self first

I have heard about and read stories about people, mostly women, who have put others first and themselves last. Then comes the time when they realise, they have not been caring for themselves.

It can be devastating when wellbeing is at risk either because of putting others first or because we fell into the arms of the power of procrastination. There comes a time when you take an in-depth look into your habits and all you see is chaos and commotion. There is disorder in life when we do not look after ourselves. Look after our wellbeing.

Note to self: eat from the many coloured vegetables available.

Summary

We have to eat and exercise our bodies into wellbeing. It is not an easy journey. When I need inspiration for my wellbeing journey I look to athletes. Their journey to a gold medal takes discipline and hard work. But the results are always worth it in the end.

My quote for this week is: ‘Getting motion out of commotion.’

That means it is time to just do it. Even if there is commotion all around you in life and you do not know where to start. It is time to fill up our bodies with healthy food and start an exercise program. This is a the best start for a wellbeing journey. I am onboard, how about you?

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