Later … or later?

As this year draws to a close, let’s take a few moments and think about what matters most and how often we let stuff get between us and the people, places and activities that we love.

It’s almost a reflex to tell ourselves, I’d love to call so-and-so, or see X or visit Y, but I don’t have the time now … I’ll do it later.

Which later do we mean? Later, as in next Thursday at 4pm or later, as in any time but now, don’t pressure me, I’ll do it when I have time (or get around to it)?

Specificity and clarity around language, and recognizing the power that words have to influence our moods AND our actions is essential when it comes to getting and staying organized.

The first later is a defined later and with a simple addition to our calendar, that later and its accompanying task will most likely happen.

The second later is deliberate in its vagueness and is all about letting ourselves off a hook and avoiding some task or event we view as either unimportant or unpleasant.

Imagine the freedom in simply stating the truth, “I have no desire or intention of doing X, Y or Z now or in the future, so we should either find someone else to do it or accept that it won’t get done.”

By telling the truth, you can release yourself from secret shame or guilt, avoid another go around of not doing the thing you’ve already put off and allow someone else to address the task or event in a more timely fashion so they won’t be more upset with you when they discover the truth … later.

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