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Assign Point Values to Your Writing To-Do List

by The Procrastinating Writer on April 22, 2009

courtesy of boboroshi

courtesy of boboroshi

By Jennifer Blanchard

As a procrastinating writer, it’s likely your writing to-do list is pretty long–articles to write, poems to finish, short stories to finally get down on paper. Your procrastinating behaviors are weighing you down and you almost feel like at this point, you’ll never get your writing done.

Don’t fret. You may just need a little more motivation than most writers.

Rather than giving up on your writing dreams, try assigning point values to the items on your to-do list. Then reward yourself when you reach your point-value goal.

A little confused? Here’s how it works:

  • Take out your writing to-do list (or make a writing to-do list if you don’t already have one)
  • Decide on a point-value total
  • Go through the items on your writing list and assign a point value to each one. The more pressing projects get assigned higher point values.
  • Once you complete each writing project, write the points at the bottom of your list.
  • When the points add up to your predetermined total, reward yourself.

For even more clarity, here’s an example:

Let’s say you have four tasks on your writing list–two freelance articles that are due in a week, a short story you need to finish and a poem you want to write. You decide that your point-value total is going to be 10.

Since the freelance articles are due in a week, those are the most pressing projects, so you assign them each seven points. You want to submit your short story to a writing contest and the deadline is three weeks away, so you assign that piece of writing five points. Your poem is just for fun, so you assign it three points.

As you complete each project, write the points down. When the points add up to your predetermined total (which in this example is 10), reward yourself–go out to dinner, buy yourself something from your Amazon Wishlist, anything that makes you feel really rewarded.

Anytime you add something to your list, assign a point value to it.

By using this productivity method, you can effectively motivate yourself to get your writing done.

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