My name is Adeea and I procrastinate. A lot. Here is a working definition of procrastination.
Unclutch your pearls…smile.
I know you read this title and are thinking, “Whhhhhaaaaaaaaat?!?! There is no way procrastinators can be productive.” And you’re right. I guess a more accurate title is “How Not to Lose Your Mind When You Wait Until the Last Minute to Do Something You’ve Known About for a Really Long Time.”
Procrastination is not seen as an admirable trait in most situations. When people realize you procrastinate, you usually receive reactions like
So we usually try to exist under the radar, not wanting the real reason to be discovered for the dark circles under our eyes and Venti sized Starbucks cup in our hand. But today, I reveal to the world the things I do to increase my “productivity” when I procrastinate.
Procrastinators are called lazy, said to have a fear of perfection, said to lack interest in the task, or lack the skill sets needed to accomplish a task. To which I say, “Pish Paw.” Sometimes I just don’t feel like doing it at that time (wait, is that the same thing as laziness? LOL). *kanyeshrugs*
I prefer to have a much more “Harlem Renaissance” view to procrastination. I imagine walking into a dimly lit, slightly hazy room (from a fog machine, not smoking LOL) and sitting down in front of my computer and creating MAGIC (insert jazz hands here)! This is how I believe all the greats did it…
Author, James Baldwin and his typewriter (1961)
But the truth is there are some things about my style of procrastination that I think make it a bit different (at least in my eyes–and that’s all that matters LOL).
I may wait until the last minute to create, but I’m thinking about it all along.
Because I wait to create, I do not have the luxury to second guess myself. As my grandmother would say, I have to go with my “first mind.” And my instinct is usually spot on.
I am usually more focused and have increased comprehension–because I have to.
I truly am in a zone. I am focused and distractions are eliminated. I am focused solely on the project at hand and do not multi-task. All of my mental and intellectual energy is dedicated to what I need to accomplish.
Some of you have already broken out in hives just reading this post–procrastination is not your thing. I get it…hopefully we’ll still be boo’s after you read this. But there is someone out there reading this all alone doing the Nae Nae because they realize they are not alone.
Even for my boo’s out there who have a list of things you need to make a list for, there may come a time when you will have to work on a task or project at the “last minute.” Never fret, I got you…
Here are 5 things I do to increase my “productivity” when I procrastinate.
Become resigned to the fact that I procrastinated and will have to suffer the consequences for it (lack of sleep, can’t go out to play with my friends, no TV, etc.). For me, it reduces the stress in an already stressful situation. It’s no one’s fault but my own that I waited until the last minute, so no use stressing over choices I made. Even if working on a project last minute is completely outside of your control, there is no need to add additional stress to an already potentially stressful situation. Just keep quoting, “It will get done.” Release the completion of the task into the atmosphere–and it will get done.
Schedule my procrastination. I know you’re thinking, “well why don’t you just schedule to work on it earlier?” Because that would make sense, ok?!?! (smile). When I know I’m going to procrastinate, I clear my schedule and make sure that’s the only thing I work on during that time.
Brainstorm and take notes leading up to my scheduled procrastination. I’m a thinker. I think about stuff all the time. I google stuff. I read blogs and articles. I have conversations with friends. I’m always using Deepak Chopra’s 9 I’s for Presentations. I think about my intended outcomes, gather information, analyze it, and think about how I interpret that data. To this end, Evernote is my BFF when I procrastinate! I take notes, clip online resources and compose outlines.
Have a plan for how I will accomplish the task. I think about design, order, structure, etc. as I approach the time to work on the task or project. It is rare that my screen stays blank for more than about 2-3 minutes. Because I have been gathering information and analyzing, I already know my approach and attack plan when I finally sit down to work. I sometimes have a list of tasks I need to accomplish so I’m sure not to forget anything.
Keep track of time.Allot a certain time for each task or section. I set mini deadlines while I’m working. I allot a certain amount of time per section or task. That way I do not spend too much on any one task. If I finish early (which I always do), I go back and “check my work.”
The procrastinator’s way of life is not for everyone…in fact it’s not for most. But for some of us, it is our cross to bear. I honestly do not think my work suffers much, but it does suffer. I think that because I do not have time to second guess myself, I rely on my instinct when it comes to content–and to date it hasn’t steered me wrong.
If you’re not ashamed and feel like pretty kitty below, leave me a comment and let me know you are a fellow procrastinator!
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