Why do We Procrastinate Taking Care Of Ourselves? - It Begins With A Thought Coaching

Why do We Procrastinate Taking Care Of Ourselves?

A me dayProcrastinate taking care of ourselves

So this past week I had a super luxurious spa day. Just by myself. It was amazingly dreamy. I got a massage, facial, pedicure and my hair washed, dried and styled. All of the pampering my little heart desired. They even had lunch brought in for me, like I was a celebrity or something.  

The slightly sad part that hit me part way in, was that I had procrastinated me for so long. My husband gave me this luxurious spa day for Mother’s Day. In 2021. And I waited for 13 months to use it. I needed it and could’ve used a me day for so long. And I just kept saving it and pushing it off and not taking this time for myself. All I had to do was call and schedule it. It took me 5 minutes to do that once I finally did. And yet I waited and waited and waited.

The whole day felt like love for me. Peace, quiet, soothing smells, caring touch and nourishing products for my skin and a delicious lunch and nothing to do but just be present and enjoy it. I realize spa days and massages are not everyone’s cup of tea or not everyone’s idea of a lovely me day…but it totally is for me. I prefer it over shopping or socializing…I love time and space in my head and an opportunity to get present in my body and just breathe and think and rest. Laying out in the sun by a pool with a good book is another favorite me time experience as well for this reason.

So why, if this is a thing I love and that I really want that feels like love for me, why do I put it off and wait and procrastinate and delay it?

Well isn’t this a relevant question for all of us to consider.

Why do we put off and procrastinate and delay taking care of ourselves in the ways we want and love to be taken care of?

I think for me, I was waiting for the “right” time, mixed with a little scarcity. My mind was filled with thoughts like this…I just have the one gift card. This is not an everyday experience. I need to make the most of it. I want it to be perfect and magical. I want to go in and be able to spend a day not stressed, not worried, not thinking about anything coming up-just able to fully relax and enjoy. Not a tall order at all eh? 

I don’t know that there is ever a time in my life where there is zero stress, worry or overthinking about anything going on. I mean, I manage it well with all of the tools I have, but I am a human with a human brain living a human life where things happen and my brain loves to stress, worry, and overthink. Which is why 13 months went by and a “right” time that met all of my unrealistic criteria never presented itself.  

After another Mother’s Day came and went I finally just told myself that now was the right time and that I was going to go on whatever day and just make it what I wanted it to be rather than wait for it to happen.

Waiting for the “right” time

Are you thinking this about your own health or weight loss journey? That you are waiting for the right time? That the next thing you try has to be THE thing that works? That you need to make the most of it once you decide to do it so you need to be ready and you need to find a time that is free of events and holidays and vacations and birthdays and added stress?

If so, how’s that working out? How will you know when it’s the right time? 

How do you feel when you think the next thing has to be THE thing? Excited? Or pressured? How will you get or be ready? How will you know that you are? 

And think about your life-is there a time-like at least a several month window where you will not have some sort of event so that you can just focus on your weight loss? And more importantly-if somehow there is, how will you learn how to navigate those things and the food and eating involved if you don’t have some experience trying to do so with conscious effort and awareness

What will change in you in that time that will make those other things irrelevant or no longer a concern? Like if you really focus in for a few months, what is then different about the next vacation, birthday, or event? I want you to really think about it and answer honestly. So really think about what you think needs to change to make those things easier to navigate or a non-issue.

 

Procrastinating what is good for us

So many of my clients talk about how good they feel when they tune into their bodies and pay attention to what foods and how much food feels good in their bodies. We know what it feels like to overeat until we’re stuffed or eat a bunch of sugar or drink too much or eat foods that we love to taste but that don’t love us. So why do we procrastinate figuring this out? Why do we keep telling ourselves we’ll start tomorrow or on Monday? Why do we choose to overeat or eat food that makes us feel terrible and choose to procrastinate learning how to eat to feel good?

I talked about this a couple of episodes ago – so many of us procrastinate wearing what we want to or buying clothes that fit us or that we like. We put off being comfortable or feeling good in our clothes. 

Why do we choose to squeeze into our too tight jeans that are uncomfortable to sit down in? Why do we hide our bodies under big clothes? Why do we cover up even though it’s summertime and we are hot and uncomfortable? Why do we deprive ourselves of the pleasure of wearing something that feels good and that we love wearing? 

This is sometimes why we procrastinate exercise or moving our bodies…we are waiting until we feel like we look good in our work out clothes. We are embarrassed to get out and be seen moving our bodies in the world until we look right.

This often also informs our leisure activities like vacations or outings or hobbies. We procrastinate trips or outdoor activities or social gatherings because we don’t want to get into a swimsuit. Or we don’t want to be embarrassed at how winded or sweaty we get when we try things like hiking or exploring a new place with friends or family.

Why do we do this? Why do we procrastinate ourselves? 

We know what we ultimately want. We want to feel good and free in our bodies. We want to feel comfortable in our skin. We want to wear what we like and what feels good. We want to eat to nourish our bodies. We want to be in good health so that we can be around to fully live our lives for as long as we’re here. We want to be full of energy for our kids and grandkids. We want to enjoy the next phase of life and be able to take advantage of opportunities and experiences. 

We want to look in the mirror and feel love and acceptance.

So why do we wait to do what is required in order to create this for ourselves?

I think for a lot of us, it comes down to our relationships with ourselves. More specifically, our beliefs about our worth. Think about people or pets or responsibilities in your life that you take care of. Why do you do the things you do to care for them? Why do you feed and nurture and give attention and love to those people or things? Why do you make time for them? Why do you prioritize their care? Because you love them, and you think they are worthy of it, they deserve it, and it is worth your time and energy.

What did they do to be worthy of such care and concern and attention? Are they perfect? Do they lack weakness? Do they always do the right thing, say the right thing, and never make a mistake? Do they have perfect bodies that are the right shape and size and weight?

I don’t even need to know the person or pet or thing you’re thinking of to know that none of that is true. Why is it that you are holding yourself to this standard of worth?

You are and will never be perfect by the definition of perfect we typically reference, which is free from any flaw or defect in condition or quality; faultless. You by your very nature will have weaknesses. You will not always do or say the right thing. You will make mistakes. You have the body that you have, just like the person you love and care for does-right is relative. But just like them, you are not less worthy because of all of this.

I want you to really think about this for a while today. Just keep asking yourself these questions: What do you need to do or change in order to be worthy or enough? Why? How do you know that this will make you worthy or enough? Who says? Where did you get this information?

What will you do once you are worthy?
What will you allow yourself to feel once you are enough?
What will you be able to accomplish or try or wear or experience when you are the right weight?
What are you telling yourself is required of you in order to stop procrastinating you and start doing for you what you do for other important people in your life?

Part of why we procrastinate is that the work we need to do is…well work. It’s not a day at the spa. It is going to require discomfort and lots of it for an indeterminate amount of time. It makes sense that we hesitate to get started or do what it takes or dive into a program or a new process. But here’s the thing…

The reward we get, the love we feel as we show up for ourselves and face the struggle with an eye on what awaits us on the other side? That is a gift to ourselves like the day at the spa was for me. The hard work gets us to the freedom on the other side

The choice to nourish instead of numb, that leads to peace in our minds and bodies. Showing up for the challenge, that changes our relationship with ourselves. Choosing to love instead of judge changes the way we take care of ourselves.

Spend some time today thinking about what you are procrastinating when it comes to taking care of you, and why. 

What’s one small thing you could stop putting off and start doing today?

If you’ve been procrastinating applying for Love First my group weight loss program…that’s one small thing you could stop putting off and start doing. See you soon!

 

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Natalie brown certified life and weight loss coach

Meet Natalie

I spent over 2 decades battling my weight and hating my body, before I found a solution that worked FOR GOOD. I lost 50 pounds by changing not just what I eat, but WHY. Now I help other women like me get to the root of the issue and find their own realistic, permanent weight loss success. Change is possible and you can do it. I can help you.

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