Transcript of Episode:
Welcome back to the podcast. I am Marvette. Um, and, I'm here to talk to you about my nemesis procrastination. I'm getting a little loopy y'all because, um, if you don't know, I batch record my podcast and I am on the last one for the month of September. It is the end of August and there's a lot of things happening today. It was announced that I have taken a new position at the University of Maryland College Park and the center of diversity and inclusion in higher education as a postdoc associate. Um, and that means I no longer work as the women's Resource Center director at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. And so I've been dealing with that transition, um, and all the things in. So what tends to happen with me as I'm a work in progress y'all, like I know I had these podcasts episodes, but you know, I'm still going to work.
I'm not perfect. I just, I'm trying to share with you the things that I say to myself. Like when I'm doing these episodes, I'm really talking to myself. Um, and I'm bringing you along the, along for the ride because I hope that it will also be helpful for you, but please don't, I hope I never go up the impression that I got it all together cause I don't. Um, and what happens through large periods of transition or when things get really hectic sometimes and I haven't been doing the best job at managing myself thoughts and times and things is that I will go into the despair, a hole of procrastination on that, picking up the phone. I'm not talking to anyone. I also am not doing what I'm supposed to be doing. Right. Cause it's different if you're like taking the time out because you're trying to, excuse me.
You have a lot of things going on. Um, and no, my, my pattern is that I get overwhelmed, I stop communicating with people and I stop doing anything and it just, everything starts to build and build a to do list starts to build or start slowing even a to do list because I'm too overwhelmed to write one cause I'm just like, it's too much. There's too much happening. Um, and that's what happened a few weeks. Yeah, a few weeks. Couple of weeks ago was that I thought I was doing well. I thought I was on top of everything. I thought I was being organized and no, all of a sudden the tiredness caught up to me. Um, because mentally going through a whole thing, like I'm not only leaving my job, I'm leaving the state. I have to pack up, move across the country. I had to start this new job. I had to learn a new routine as a new set of people. This job is completely different than my last job. And so feeling like I'm in between worlds, saying bye to family and friends, there was a whole like fiasco thing with the moving situation in that I didn't know how that was going to happen if I was going to get my stuff to Maryland and plus life is happening and so the end of summer. You have birthdays, family events, all of these things.
so the tiredness and all the things caught up to me being overwhelmed. Try. And then if you know me, I'm always trying to do things. I'm always, I can't, I think that I could do all the things without paying attention to myself. And even if you talk to me, I'll be like, yeah, I put the time in there for me to be, and at the time in there for me to like fill myself back up. I'm still being honest with myself. It's thing, it's a thing. So, um, so then what happens is I just say F it and I don't do anything. I don't, I'm really not doing it on purpose. I'm really not. I'm doing it like I don't care about the other people. I get caught up in feeling like I had let everyone down and I had to let myself down and that I feel like that I have dug a hole so deep, but there is no way that I can recover and like no one's going to understand or forgive me and everyone's just mad at me and that I've ruined everything. Um, cause if you would've talked to me in the middle of it, uh, I was convinced that I ruined my business. It was over all my clients are going to fire me and go find someone else. Um,
that my family and friends were never gonna talk to me again. Cause messages. I mean at one point I think I had like 100 messages on my phone. I just, yeah, I just thought I ruined everything. And all of this was like a week. It's like being on this side of things and taking a step back. This may be an been a week in the past it would have been probably weeks, months even. But now by paying more attention and doing work, it's only about a week. Let's still, I feel the same way when I'm in the middle of it, that much more time has passed and much more damage has been done.
Um, and so if you can relate to any of what I'm saying, please, please, please keep listening. Um, so what do you do? Like what did I do? What do you do when you, um, had done this? Like you're in this, this deep, I don't know, spiral that you feel in your mind. Um, so here's some things that you may have to contend with is that one, making the decision. You're going to come back into life and that you're going to dig yourself.What are you going to get yourself out of this hole? Cause digging only goes back the other way anyway. You're making the decision that you're going to do something like you don't want to continue to do what you've been doing. You're going to stop and you're going to try to fix everything first. A decision needs to be made because that's first. And then second is being prepared for an accepting the shame spiral that may happen. Excuse me.
So you made a decision and I'm going to do this and then it's like shame hits you like, I'm so bad I shouldn't have did this. Why did I do this? Letting it happen. But now I believe in the height. Just let it happen. Let those thoughts happen. It's okay. Um, and just keep telling yourself like it's fine that you're thinking that you're not trying to stop them. Cause the more you try to stop them or prevent those type of thoughts, the more that, that they will persist in, the more it will happen. So just let it happen. Whatever you need to do, you need to write. I'm a journal Journaler I think it's a word and that I like to brain dump and write things down. And so that, that helps me to let those thoughts come through and let them happen. So first letting the shame spiral, just you can't get stuck there being stuck there with be trying to prevent it. So let it happen. Um, and then what you have to avoid though while you're doing this is buffering. So buffering would be like, um,
you're trying to, I try to avoid those feelings that come up along with shame and like, how did I let myself do this? Or why did I do this? Um, instead of, um, dealing with that and like what it feels cause it, it feels like, oh my God, this is a lot. Um, instead of, you may like watch, you may be in to watch like Netflix or TV. You may like me binge watch youtube. Or Maybe drink alcohol more than usual. Maybe you smoke some weed. I don't know what your thing is. Maybe you eat a lot. Um, maybe you're just like, I'm going to clean. I know those people, well now one day. Maybe like some of that will rub off on me. I don't know. But maybe you likes to clean a lot. Maybe you decide I'm going to declutter my whole closet by.
Maybe you feel like I'm going to read a hundred books. I don't know what your process is for avoiding your emotions, but that's what it is, is avoiding the bad feelings you're having, quote unquote. But I don't, that's a whole nother podcast, but like quote unquote bad feelings. And so to take some of the sting or the pressure off of that shame that you're allowing to happen, you do these other things, but be mindful of that. And even if you let yourself do it, just know, like as a time limit on this. So, um, I think I read somewhere that like Beyonce only gives herself 24 hours to feel sorry for herself. Maybe only give yourself 24 hours. But having a period of time where you're like, I'm a lead to shame happen. Um, and do this whole self pity thing. I'm a buffer in these ways.
I'm gonna just watch all the TV and drink the wine and the ice cream but I only get 24 hours to do this. I only get 24 hours to like feel sorry for myself and say it's too much and I'm overwhelmed, right? Then you have to for real get to work. So the first step isn't the end of like letting the shame happen by doing all these things. The second thing is, okay, now you have to get out of your own head. And where I said journaling and brain dumping was optional in the first stage is absolutely critical. In this second step, you have to write everything down on paper. I highly, highly, highly suggest you actually writing pen to paper, not typing because these are two different uh, feelings or processes in the mind. And I've seen way better results when people actually take pen to paper and write things down.
You want to write out everything in your head, everything that you feel like you need to do. You should be doing, you could be doing, we're not going to judge it. We're not going to think about how we're just going to get it all out of our head onto paper because things always seem more or bigger, harder, whatever in our brain. And they do actually look on paper. So you just write everything down. We're just gonna clean out the brain cause we can't think through, we can't be rational or think through a plan or whatever. We can't do everything in our head. And that's what we try to do is figure it out in our head before actually doing it. This is causing you or calling you to do it. So write everything down on a piece of paper, right? However that's best. And then you want to look at that list. Look at that list and you know, once you to identify, okay, what are the things that maybe you should have done, but the deadline has passed. Like there's no way to do it. Like you, you missed the boat completely mark. Those maybe use different colors. Um, but put an x by those. You put an x by the things that have passed.
Um, you want to circle the things that you can do. Like you can still do. There is still time to do them. Circle those and then put a check by the things that you could do them. But they all need to be done right now. But I mean, you could declutter your closet, but does it have to be done right now? It doesn't. So the X is things that you should do, but the deadline has passed for those, those ex you gonna put an x by that you're gonna. Um, make a note to yourself if like, if any of those, um, the requires a response. So there's difference between, say there was a conference, um, that you want to submit a proposal to, but the deadline has passed. Well that law has passed, you can't do it, but you don't need to follow up with anyone unless you made a commitment to partner with someone.
But like typically you don't need to like, write the professional association and be like, you know, I missed a deadline. I'm sorry. You don't need to do that. There's no need to talk to them, but maybe you were um, Okay, let's see, a friend needed a recommendation letter and you didn't write the recommendation letter by the time and the application has passed. Then you may want to follow up and email to your friends and be like, Hey, I didn't get to the letter. I apologize. You know, you might want to follow up in some way and we'll talk more about that in a minute. But you want to make note of those things that happened x by them. But you need to follow up the things that you circled and only you can do. I want you to go ahead and write a deadline by them.
Um, just so that you're aware of the bigger picture and then the things that you could do but don't have to do. We just want to put them all on the separate sheet by themselves anyway. We're going to put them separate because they're not the priority right now. You only want to focus on the things that that are the priority or should be the priority. Okay. And so once you're looking at the list of things, um, so on a new list, you want to write the things that you can do with its deadline and the things that you have missed the deadline on, but you need to follow up with someone either through email or a phone call. Okay? And that should be on the list by itself. Now, before you go ahead and tackle this list, right? Because those thoughts about the come back up, you need to talk to yourself and prepare for that.
Give your, allow yourself some grace, right? To be like, Yup, I did that. So I had to be like, Yep, I went a whole week and I didn't say anything to anybody. Yet. There's some things that I dropped the ball on and all of these things are happening and sometimes I can feel like we're giving ourselves like there's a line between making excuses and getting grace. You're human and you're doing the best that you can. Like, yes, I was moving. There's a lot happening. Um, yeah, I could have made better decisions. Yeah, I could have communicated more with people and there was a happening and all of those things are valid. Continue or recommit to taking the next step after you have made this list and then accept responsibility for the decisions or indecisions. Indecision is a word that you made or didn't make, right? Saying yup, I'm going to do this.
So you have the list of things that you can do. You're gonna talk to yourself and prepare and then you want to go reach out to people, to your people who know you, who love you, and have your best interest at heart. Where this is not the time to talk to the people who are lukewarm about us. This is not the time to talk to friendemies. This is not time to talk to the critical on or a family member of friend. This you don't talk to them, you not, not right now. You talk to the people who love you and support you who understand what's going on. Do you find those people? You talk to them who get what it's like uh, to go through the things that you're going through. Talk to them. You find them and then you go and you tell them what's going on.
You tell them like, Yep, I'm feeling a little bit overwhelmed. I dropped the ball. I didn't do anything for the past week, but I have a plan. I wrote out the things that I need to do and I really, really, it would really mean the world to me. If you can help me get myself from this situation and help keep me accountable and giving me some support, I'm going to share with you the list that I have and what I need to do by when. If you could just check in with me in a few days and see where I am, that will help me a lot. So the key is to find the people who are supportive, to be honest with them and telling them what's going on and then be very clear about how you want them to help you because people want to help you. They want to support you and love on you. But sometimes they don't know how. Sometimes I don't know how to help. And so if you could tell them exactly like call me or texting me in three days and ask me about this list of things I share with you. Oh, that's something very tangible that I can do is very clear what it is that you want to do, want me to do. And I know that you're like taking steps to help yourself.
Usually that will help people soften a little and like really understand, be open. Um, but if you go in and you're like, you know, like, Yup, I didn't do it. Oh well. And then they are upset because maybe you're supposed to do something where maybe they've been trying to get in contact with you and you didn't respond and you go in with that attitude. They're less likely to want to continue to show up for you in that way. But if you can accept responsibility and a part of accepting responsibility is allowing people to feel how they feel. People get to have whatever reaction they have. You don't get to say that they can't be mad or upset at you or you can't get mad at them for being mad at you because you didn't do something. You have to allow people to feel how they feel.
And it may come down to that. They choose not to. Um, they choose not to live no longer be in your life. And you have to accept that because that's part of accepting responsibility for the decisions you made. And I make an argument that then, and they don't need to be in your life in the first place, but you know, that's a whole other thing. I don't know what you did or didn't do, but part of being around your community and telling people and accepting responsibility as allowing them to feel how they feel without you feeling the need to feel better about that, let them, let them feel better. So yeah, the really, I mean, it's hard. Ghosting, procrastination. I understand. Trust me, I understand them. They're really, it comes down to really being honest with yourself. Allowing yourself to feel the feelings and allowing other people to feel the feelings.
Really sitting down and writing out the things that you need to do. Reaching out to people and being honest with them, setting deadlines and then taking it step by step through your list, taking it one thing at a time and finishing that. And you will find that if you just say, I'm committed to the next step, I'm committed to taking one step, that it becomes easier and easier and momentum builds and then you look up and you're like, oh, okay, I'm out of that. But it's really, it can be difficult getting started. It can feel like it's never, you know, you're never going to get out of it. You can feel like, um, you know, it's easy to be like, why did I do this and talk like it's easy to do all those things, but please, please, please just commit to saying I'm going to take the next step.
So I hope that was helpful. Um, and feel like, okay, I want to do all these things, but I don't have a community of people who can help me be accountable, who are gonna support. And then I really want to encourage you to sign up for Write Away. Um, you can go to my website at marvettelacy.com the link will be in the show notes. You can DM me on Instagram at @marvettelacy and say you're interested in signing up. But it's a weekly accountability group. We meet every Sunday and Wednesday for three hours each day. We come together to love on each other, to share what's going on in our lives for the week and to get shit done. We work, we, we work, rewrite whatever we need to do. Um, and we know that we are, uh, committed to one another, holding each other accountable and being supportive. It's a monthly membership. And so please come to the website and find out more about it. Um, that is all I have for, uh, today. I hope your September has treated you well. I hope you had a great summer and that your years off, your new school year's off to a great start, but I will be back with you next week until then. Do something and show yourself some love. Bye for now.