The sun is shining, the birds are singing, things are finally beginning to warm up, but I’m still stuck inside working through my last term worth of schoolwork for the year. Daydream or read? My mind doesn’t want to stay focused on dull things like math or history when the view from my open window beckons me out of doors. Summer break is calling my name… but then again, so are my responsibilities. I need a final push to get through this last bit of work before summer gets here with all of the things that come along with it: shorts, flip flops, sunshine, swimming… the list goes on.
Perhaps only other home schoolers would truly understand my predicament – I’m not sure. However, I do know that the weather outside is making it increasingly difficult to stick to everyday tasks when I’m longing for that care-free feeling that summer brings.
With these thoughts rolling around in my mind, I’ve begun to look closely at the difference between productivity and procrastination. Sure, it’s simple enough to make excuses; after all, sunshine and activity are good for me, right? Of course they are, but so is education.
Productivity vs. Procrastination –
Productive – yielding favorable or useful results; constructive.
Well, that sounds great to me. Honestly, I’d like to get the work done – simply for the sake of being productive. However, sometimes schoolwork just seems like a burden. Then again, perhaps I’m looking at it from the wrong perspective.
People in America seem to look at school as nothing more than a demand or requirement. They do not realize the privilege it is to have an education at their finger tips, they only see the task it is to acquire that education. Learning these things will help me in numerous ways – most importantly, having an education can help me to spread the gospel more effectively. Honestly, the more I explore my science book, the more amazed I become at the creativity of God and that comes through in the way that I speak about Him to others. That’s only one example, but there are so many more.
I’ll readily admit that being productive is hard. The grass is always greener on the other side and it’s simple enough to give in when things draw our attention away from our responsibilities. We put those responsibilities off until tomorrow, but the knowledge of unfinished tasks has a tendency to take the joy right out of our “stolen breaks.”
Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task. –William James.
Now, I am by no means saying that taking breaks is evil. On the contrary, it is important for us to rest at some point; but there is a big difference between a well deserved break and laziness. The question is, what is the difference?
A well known verse in Proverbs 6, tells us to observe the ant. What’s so special about ants? They prepare for themselves by gathering food, building nests, ect.; they’re quick, organized and all-together efficient. In other words: they get the job done. That’s pretty much the complete opposite of procrastination.
Procrastinate – to delay or postpone action; put off doing something.
But you see, being productive doesn’t mean we never take breaks, but that we use our breaks efficiently. If you’re dog tired, take a quick break – you’ll work better if you’re rested. When we’re productive, it doesn’t mean that we never take the time off to enjoy life, it means we enjoy the time off that much more because we know that we’ve been efficient in accomplishing our tasks.
Just a quick word on what’s been going on in my mind… now, I have to get back to work! 🙂