Don’t Hit the Snooze Button

You Snooze. You Lose.

Lying in bed, head on the pillow.  Cozy.  I'm dreaming there are raindrops outside.  It feel so nice. Alarm goes off.  "Ten more minutes please" I say to myself. I hit the snooze button and snuggle back in.  Ten minutes goes by fast. Alarm goes off once again.  "Another 10 minutes please!"  I hit the snooze again. 

Before I knew it Roscoe, the dog, starts whimpering – he needs to go out to pee and poop.  I ignore him.   Suddenly, my daughter, Theresa, shouts, “Dad, wake up! I don’t want to be late at school.” 
I tell myself, “School doesn't start until 7:30am.” I open my eyes, “Shoot, it’s 6:45!” I jump out of bed, and rush to the bathroom and ask Theresa to walk the dog. 

Argh, my work clothes are in the dryer machine and they are wrinkled. I have to iron them but there is no time for ironing – the pants will stretch out eventually and no one will notice.  What about breakfast? I will just eat it on the road but I make sure Theresa gets her bagel and a glass of milk. 

It's one of my bad days, the car won’t start.   I call my neighbor to take Theresa but they have already left. I ask Rose, my wife, to bring Theresa to school but she is also in a rush to go work because she will open the pharmacy at 8am.  If she doesn’t leave now, she will not make it because of the traffic. 

Family first or work first?  Rose ends up taking Theresa to school.  Theresa makes it just before the bell rings.  Rose was most definitely late.  I call AAA for car battery replacement and then call work and cancel my meetings. Before I know it, it’s almost 11am.  

I was upset. I was exhausted.

I was not prepared for that day.

There is a lack of discipline which causes every piece of anxiety that drives everyone crazy.

I am not living the best of life.

The worst part is that there is no instant fix for all these behaviors and by human nature, we tend to procrastinate, to over indulge and to be lazy.

However, by acknowledging who we are, a change to a disciplined life can start somewhere.

First start planning. It's as simple as doing the laundry and ironing of the clothes during the weekend or the night before. With planning, you are putting order in your life, and once you stick to your daily, weekly, and monthly plan, they will become a routine which turns into a habit.  Good planning means a good day.

Take advantage of technology.  Your smartphone has calendar apps that will allow you to schedule events and tasks. You can set reminders minutes, hours, and days before the task.  Calendars can also be shared among family members which means you will never miss any important occasions in your family. There is also the Call Yourself app where you can program it to automatically call you at a specific time. Psychologically, the Call Yourself app maybe better than the alarm clock because with a phone call, you will tend to answer it.

Finally, motivate yourself.  Part of you will always say, I don’t want to make a plan, I don’t want to use my calendar or I don’t want to make notes.  You need to overcome laziness, instant gratification, and self-indulgence. Only you can change yourself.  How? Just tell yourself, "I can do it." Then DO IT.

Challenge 1:

  • Set your alarm 30 minutes early.
  • When it goes off, start counting for FIVE seconds by saying “One thousand one, one thousand two, one thousand three, one thousand four, one thousand five.”
  • Make the decision to stand up and get out of bed. 
  • If you snooze, you loose.

Challenge 2: Apply the FIVE second rule in areas of your life to beat procrastination and laziness.  And to a greater extent, apply to your ideas to make it happen.

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