Raise your hand if you have a problem with procrastination. Uh yeah. Feels great to know I’m not alone, but also a little disheartening exactly how widespread this is. I caught an article by Jeff Goins regarding how to get the work done which outlined the use of negative consequences to get one to finish writing. This is a little different from what is normally touted as advice. If you look at it as carrot versus stick, we are constantly extorted to go for the carrot. Positive things will help us do more. Rewards are king. Except that doesn’t always work. In my personal experience, rewards do not seriously motivate me. I’m the kind of person who would rather just do without than work for something I don’t necessarily need and if I need it, it’s not a good reward. That makes rewarding me a problem. That eliminates the carrot.
By contrast, Jeff’s article pushes the stick method: pushing yourself forward with negative consequences. One of his consequences: giving up coffee. That just makes me quiver cause coffee. I am unfortunately not an adherent to the stick method either. Consequences capable of moving me forward would also cause me a great deal of anxiety making me less likely to do the work instead of goading me forward. So, no stick method.
Seeing the problems with this, I went looking for a third option on one of my writer Facebook groups and a fellow writer, Tallulah Lucy, stepped up to the challenge with this post, How I Beat Procrastination. She offers ideas on the underpinning of her procrastination and how to work around that. My favorite thing: Finding the FUN in the task you have to do. Writing is fun except when you have to. When I’m just poking around writing whatever, that’s not an issue. Unfortunately, I have goals and things to finish, meaning I need to consistently be moving toward some kind of resolution. A bit daunting when I think about it, exactly why I procrastinate.
Taking Tallulah’s advice, I’m looking for the fun in the work I’m doing.