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The Fight You Must Win to be Productive!!!

(This is a Chapter from the book - 21 Days To Overcoming Procrastinationby Deon Thomas)

“One who is slack in his work is brother to one who destroys.” (Proverbs 18:9)

“However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at.”

- Stephen Hawking

I REALLY ENJOY AN EXCITING heavyweight boxing match. One of the most explosive professional heavyweight bouts that took place in my lifetime was between “Iron” Mike Tyson and James “Buster” Douglas, on February 11, 1990. Mike Tyson was the undisputed heavyweight champion with 37 fights under his belt, all of which he had won, mostly by knockouts. Buster Douglas, despite possessing a fairly respectable record, with twenty-nine wins, four losses, and one draw, was considered by many to be the next unfortunate soul who would be knocked out cold by Iron Mike.

People all over the world were filled with excitement about this fight. When the bell rang, both boxers ferociously attacked each other throwing powerful blows, but to everyone’s surprise, Buster Douglas was the more dominant fighter. In the eighth round, however, Mike Tyson finally got the upper hand and knocked down Douglas. The referee began to count, and it seemed as if Buster was not going to make it, but somehow, on the count of nine, he found a way to get back on his feet. In the tenth round, Buster Douglas came out of his corner with renewed energy and fought with all his might, and it paid off. “Iron” Mike Tyson was knocked out! In the history of boxing, this was the greatest upset of all time. James “Buster” Douglas, the man considered to be the underdog, became the world’s heavyweight champion.

“Buster” Douglas had to fight with all his might to defeat Mike Tyson. There was, however, an unseen battle he also had to fight that night – an internal one. Unknown to many, twenty-three days before the massive bout, Buster Douglas’ mother suddenly died. This man found himself in an intensely painful position in which he had to dig deep to muster the inner strength required to remain focused on the biggest fight of his career. His victory over Mike Tyson on that day showed his remarkable resilience, which continues to inspire many even today.

Just as Buster Douglas had to muster the strength to become a world boxing champion, we also have to fight hard to overcome our challenges with procrastination. While we may never be engaged in a real-world championship boxing match, we have to fight to make sure that our lives are constantly moving in a productive direction. Every day, we are faced with all kinds of demands, and usually without an ounce of notification. In light of these constant interferences, the only way our life will proceed in the direction we desire is by fiercely fighting for our time. Yes, you read that correctly! We all have to fight for a productive way of life. We have to fight to get through our planned activities, to resist laziness, to turn a blind eye to a plethora of distractions, to determine what is futile, to remain focused and not squander our energies on fruitless tasks. Without a fight, we will only find ourselves in an unprofitable relaxation business where we are actively tearing down our own future. Take a look at what the Proverb poignantly declares:

The individual who is slack, or who lags behind in his work, relaxes his hand from his duties. He stops working and ruins his previous efforts! That is why the proverb tells us that the act of relaxing one’s hand is analogous to being destructive. Truthful words indeed! It is therefore nullifying to be productive SOME of the time – we need to learn to be productive ALL THE TIME. This is where our fighting attitude comes into play.

To be world-class productivity warriors, we must fight against one of the greatest enemies of productivity – INCONSISTENCY. Inconsistency uproots and destroys the efforts of yesterday. Consider, for instance, someone who decides to lose weight. He watches his diet, pays a trainer, goes to the gym and consumes a lot of water. After a few weeks, he stops and falls back into his old routine. He gains weight and is back at square one. Why? Because of the enemy, inconsistency. All of his initial efforts have been suddenly destroyed because he relaxed the pursuit of his fitness goal.

The truth is, we are all grappling with this enemy on different levels. However, for us to win the fight, we have to make up our minds not to let the enemy, inconsistency, win in our lives, regardless of how many times we encounter failure on the road to daily productivity.

From this early point of your journey, I want you to make up your mind to fight against this enemy. And the way to fight and defeat inconsistency is by GETTING UP and CONTINUING your journey EVERY time it knocks you down. Although you are going to be knocked down many times, make up your mind, just like James “Buster” Douglas, to get up and CONTINUE your fight.


To be world-class productivity warriors, we must fight against one of the greatest enemies of productivity – INCONSISTENCY.


Memorize :

“One who is slack in his work is brother to one who destroys.” (Proverbs 18:9)


Heavenly Father, I thank You for providing me with the strength and ability to walk faithfully in the realm of productivity. Help me not to foster an attitude of giving up, but to allow Your Holy Spirit to form a persevering attitude within me. Help me today to fight to make the best use of my time and not relax my hand from the things I am currently working on. All these things I pray in the name of Jesus.


By Deon O. Thomas

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