This is a post I wrote last year but had nowhere to share. So. I’m sharing it now!
How To Stop Potato
I’m kidding. Although, how to stop potato is a good example of what I intended to talk about which is PROCRASTINATION!
I am the worst procrastinator. Especially because I have the attention span of a three-year-old and also I frequently have to disrupt my life for toilet breaks (so, so, so sad).
As usual, the internet is full of tips, such as the tips from this site.
Remind yourself that there’s always more to be done than can be done. Then ask yourself if you’re getting the right things done.
Remind myself? Okay. Well. I have some Post-It Notes. I have some wall.
Make a smart to-do list by including only the items that you’re avoiding, not the ones you know you’ll do anyway. Then set deadlines.
This I do ALL THE TIME. I make my to-do lists and then start the first item, get distracted and then add it to the next day’s list. I don’t set myself deadlines, though. I don’t like to think about deadlines.
Anyway, here is my to-do list.
- Finish that thing I’m writing
- Finish that other thing I’m writing
- Finish that OTHER OTHER thing I’m writing
- At least make progress on the things that I’m writing
- Write that post about Blood Ties that I’ve been meaning to (ETA: HA! WROTE IT!
Break the task down to lessen the sense of being overwhelmed. Once you start to enjoy a small accomplishment or two, you’re more likely to finish.
Eliminate temptation to do something else.
This is what really gets me. Let’s say for instance that I want a synonym for potato. I open my browser and next thing I know, I’ve been watching Backstreet Boys videos on Youtube for two hours and I didn’t even attempt to find another word for potato. And I can’t exactly block the internet. I need it. The worst case is usually when I create my ‘NO DISTRACTIONS’ thirty-minute playlist and then find myself dancing along or downloading a song that I just need to have right away.
Bargain with yourself. If you finish the business plan now, you can go to the movies later.
My bargain is….if I make what I feel is significant progress, I will…there’s actually nothing that I want to do. Ha! Maybe that’s it. I have nothing to bargain with or for. Fuck it, I will buy myself a cake.
Focus on the success you will achieve and the joy you will feel.
Nothing that I need to do will give me joy but I will pretend that this point says RELIEF.
Come up with a consequence that will deter you from avoiding the task. If you don’t exercise two times a week, you have to give up talking on the phone with your friends.
If I don’t get all of my tasks done I will…cancel the cake that I just bargained myself with? These tips seem contradictory.
Ask someone to help you complete the task.
Make your intentions public. This will add pressure, but for some of us, avoiding embarrassment is the mightiest motivator.
This post is me making my intentions public. For the sake of this post, I will try and do everything and if I don’t, I want everybody to shame me. I have a feeling this won’t work. Mostly because this post will be read by one person and fall into a black hole.