Acknowledge what you are: a recovering procrastinator of pleasure.
It sounds odd, but this is actually a widespread form of procrastination — just ask the airlines and other marketers who save billions of dollars annually from gift certificates that expire unredeemed.
Indeed, I have never visited the Empire State Building, the Statue of Liberty, the New York Stock Exchange, or almost any other Manhattan landmarks – which I have at times taken as a kind of metaphor for my years as a twentysomething. As I wrote in an email last year, edited to provide context:
I was thinking – while walking back to Penn – about how you said that now was the time to visit the Empire State Building, to stop living for the weekends, to stop being held back by my commute, my daily routines:
I know I over think things; that I choose the safe, dependable
pleasures over the riskier joys too often; I probably need to be
pushed and to push myself to say, “Yes,” more often. But though I
sometimes get stuck in a kind of rut, I do have a tendency to make
bold moves when I reach a certain point.
But I’m not going to regret missing out on the Empire State Building.
I’m going to regret if I don’t write a novel.
I’m going to regret if I don’t run for Congress.
I’m going to regret if I don’t spend at least a year travelling abroad.
I’m going to regret if I don’t have a child, if I don’t live for some
time in Manhattan, if I don’t give enough to charity.
I’m going to regret if I lose an opportunity because I was afraid it
wouldn’t work out.
Which I suppose was your point.
[Image by 64iso licensed under Creative Commons.]