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How to Accept Your Procrastination (And Still Get Stuff Done)

Planner

by Jennifer on January 24, 2013

This is a guest post from Megan Vick 

Yes, it’s true. I procrastinated in writing this post.

I write for both pleasure and work, and it constantly seems like I am battling with time to get everything done by my deadlines.

That’s why I wanted to share my tips for accepting your procrastination and still getting stuff done.

Admit It

“My name is Megan, and I’m a procrastinator.”

It feels so good to say it out loud. If you know you are a procrastinator, admit that you are. They always say, “The first step is admitting it,” and the same goes with procrastination.

Once you know and acknowledge that you consistently procrastinate, you’ll be able to deal with it more effectively.

Buy a Planner

Once you’ve admitted you’re a procrastinator, buy yourself a planner. Don’t use the calendar on your phone or your Google calendar. These reminder systems and schedules are too easy to ignore or dismiss completely.

By getting a paper planner and writing your schedule down every day, you greatly increase your chances of completing your tasks. If it helps, you can even write down blocks of time for your various tasks.

Stick to the Schedule

Once you have your planner, check it every day and complete your tasks.

It might suck at first, but over time, you will see results. Stephen Covey claims it takes 21 days to create a habit, so once you get through the first 3 weeks, it will be easier.

Embrace It

Because writing is a creative process, it might seem difficult to create and stick to a schedule.

Instead of agonizing over what to write by your deadline, love your procrastinating side. Write something (even if it’s not what you’re supposed to write) to help keep you on schedule. It may take longer than you want, but over time, you will begin to overcome your procrastination.

Procrastination can truly affect your life, especially if you write for a living. Deadlines are the bane of a writer’s existence and frequently mean late nights drinking coffee while writing as best you can.

Sometimes, this produces the best work for writers, and other times, it means the worst work. Find what works best for you and stick to that schedule. You’ll be happy you did.

How do you embrace your procrastinating behaviors? 

About the Author: Megan Vick is a blogger, entrepreneur, tech-geek, fitness fiend, animal and environment lover, green goddess, and world traveler.  She is a creative content specialist for Fridge Filters.

Image courtesy of JacQuLyne

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Fred January 27, 2013 at 10:04 am

One of the biggest things i have done to become more productive when it comes to writing, is setting apart 2 hours a day for writing. I don’t edit, think or ponder what i’m going to write in these two hours.. I simply write. After that, i’ll do the editing. And it took me a lot more than 21 days =( .. Something like 60 days for me.. Yeah yeah, i’m a slow Lerner. What can i tell ya xD.

2 Jennifer January 27, 2013 at 10:35 am

@Fred I think it’s great that you are setting aside 2 hours a day for writing! Most writers never force themselves to take writing seriously so congrats for doing that.

3 Steve January 30, 2013 at 3:40 pm

Megan, I like your post and you’ve got some good tips. Actually, I’ve become more of a procrastinator through the years but it doesn’t affect my writing. What am I saying? I write a ton and have a large backlog of book manuscripts, but, with the years, my skin seems to have somehow become increasingly thinner. When a publisher returns a manuscript with a polite, “I’m sorry but this doesn’t fit into our publishing plans…” I find it incredibly difficult to take a hard swallow, remove the manuscript calmly out of the envelope, place it in a new envelope and shoot it off to the next possible publisher. That trip to the post office seems amazingly far away. I also edit other people’s manuscripts and try to make them publishable, but I don’t usually encourage these aspiring writers to begin submitting to commercial publishers. I’m not sure they’re ready for that first heartbreak, then the 10th, then the 20th… So I’ve made my confession. Anyone else a closet publisher procrastinator?

4 Jennifer January 30, 2013 at 4:10 pm

@Steve I understand how hard it can be and I seriously commend you for sticking with it this long! As they say, you can only fail if you give up, so keep working at it!!

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