Tuesday, February 17, 2009


When I think of Zerizus I picture the scenario where a mother asks her son to bring her a glass of milk, and he runs to the fridge, gets her a glass of milk and brings it to her right away. I also think of “Danny three times” where the child had to hear things 3 times before he listened. But I realized there’s more to zerizus than doing what we’re told right away.

Zerizus is actually a fundamental building block in doing mitzvos and leading a productive life. I once wrote about how organization and cleanliness helps you be productive. But there’s still something more needed, and that’s Zerizus. Zerizus tells you to do something without delay, to do it at the first possible chance.

Usually, when you plan to do something, your excited about it in the beginning because its a new thing, that is the time when you are supposed to act upon it. I remember in HS I was always good about it, when girls would say we had to bring in money for a school function, I would be the first to bring it in the next day. Because it was fresh on my mind, so why not do it right away.

If you keep up to date with all you have to do, then you will always continue to do things right away. If however, you figure that you’ll do it later, the next day, so as not to seem over eager, then you will forget about it. Then when you plan on doing another thing, you don’t do that either, cause you know you still have something unfinished to do.

Lately, I feel as though I have so much unfinished tasks to do, that it just pulls me down and doesn’t allow me to be productive. So the key is to try to get them all done, and to do each task right away as its given, not to let things pile up.

When I’m in class, and I’m given HW, I think that I can’t wait to do it, I understood the class, so the HW should be fun to do. I want to do it right when I get home. But then what happens, things get in the way, and I think to myself I still have time, its not due till 2 weeks from now. But then 2 weeks later I’m sitting to do my HW, and I have lost the enthusiasm to do it, its no longer fresh in my mind. I will get myself to do it though.

So this all comes back to zerizus, how amazing the Mitzvah is, such a great common sense mitzvah. Do things right away, and you will be ahead of the game, accomplishing the most.


Leora said...

It's great to do things right away, if you can. But one often has to prioritize (just wait until you have kids! too much gets put off).

Don't forget to take care of yourself as a priority. Zerizim makdimin l'neshmar moed et nafshotehem.

Randomizing Sequencer said...

My high school principal sent out a request for money saying, if you want to give, give now or you'll end up finding this letter while cleaning for pesach and wonder why you never ended up giving anything. Much as I hate to admit it, she was right. It's so much easier to tell yourself you'll get to it later. Except that later never seems to come around...

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

"..how amazing the Mitzvah is, such a great common sense mitzvah."- Yeah, uh, I just wanted to say that I don't know if it should be clasified as a "mitzva". Maybe there are biblical inferences to it, but it's more of a "tanaitic statement".

Talmudist said...

Yup, Zrizus is certainly (like you said) a much deeper concept than the way it was taught to us by The Marvelous Middos Machine.

nmf #7 said...

Much easier said than done...
And agreeing with Leora- prioritizing sometimes takes priority over doing everything immediately.

Jewish Side of Babysitter said...

Shabbos I was going through the artscroll cataglog and I spotted a book by R' Zelig Pliskin on Zerizus, called, Taking Action, The Joyful Act of Zerizus I looked at the description and saw that it was almost the same as what I wrote, just he expressed it better.

"Zerizus is the quality within us that fuels achievement, the trait that takes what we are capable of and turns it into real accomplishment."

"Zerizus is not about hurry. It's not about pushing, aggression or aimless, rushed activity. As we cultivate zerizus we learn to create meaningful, doable goals and actually reach them. As zerizus becomes a part of our lives, we find joy and serenity in our lives, as well as practical accomplishment."

Jewish Side of Babysitter said...

Leora: true, we can't possibly do everything at once. In that case thought it would be important to make a to do list to keep track of what we have to do, so we don't forget.

True, that's an important one that I didn't think of.

Randomizing Sequencer: very true!

Shlomo: your right, its probably not a "mitzvah". Maybe "Midah" is a better word?

Talmudist: yea.

NMF#7: yea, I know.
The idea is to be goal oriented, to want to get things done, but your right, not everything can be done right away.

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