How to Get Things Done: Procrastinating Like a Pro

Ahem, so if you read my first post under the title of GTD, you would have realized that I am probably not talking to everyone. There are people who believe there is a fixed way of getting things done. I am not one of these people. I believe in instincts and individuality. I also believe in doing more of the things we enjoy. Yes, it is why I don't have a dime to my name. But I am working on that.

Right, so how do you procrastinate like a pro? These are some steps you can take:
1. Admit you are a procrastinator. Make it into a song if you wish. Who knows? It might just earn you fame.
2. Study your procrastination (i.e. what triggers it? How does it make you feel?)
3. Talk about it.  Like a LOT.
4. Procrastinate and still get things done on time.

Mate, I know it is hard to face our demons, but trust me, when you do face them they start looking silly. There is nothing wrong with being a procrastinator. I mean what's the point anyway? This cycle of always doing things. Even sleeping can be tedious at times. But it's all some sort of game and if you don't play it you're going to die out of boredom...and probably depression too. See, your emotions are based on a reward and punishment system. When you play your game well, you feel happy, motivated, confident, and perhaps for two seconds a little invincible. And yes you forget how much life can suck. If you don't play your game correctly, you're constantly reminded of the ugly. You don't need that.  Now procrastination is just a little itch at an awkward angle on your body that you have to craft your own unique tool to scratch. See, it's nothing serious. Every one has got it, too. It's Just that some people are more flexible and their hand can reach the awkward places on their body more easily. Did you just picture a ballerina? I did too. But they worked really hard to become that flexible so don't make that face.

And yes, it's no big deal, really. You're a procrastinator? So? I am one, too. Get over yourself! I bet I am a bigger one than you are, anyway. Now that you've brought the demon out in the open, it is time to have some fun with it. Yes, we are going to poke it and tickle it and make it cry and laugh. It is going to be so confused by the time we are done with it. Yes, we are still talking about procrastination.

Last week I mentioned learning about your body and its natural habit towards work. If you have this knowledge you are going to realize that there are certain times in the day that you just can't do certain things.  Now, now I know you just want to get that painting done, the light is perfect, everything is great, but you just can't bring yourself to take the brush and bring it to the canvas. It's like dragging the proverbial horse to the water and watching it defy you. No, don't curse at the poor horse. Give the beautiful beast some time.

I love procrastinating because it makes me feel cool. What? I know. I have got issues. But you know how some people do drugs to feel cool? I feel cool when I am procrastinating. It's like I am telling life to shove it, and I don't give a fig! There is also this great feeling of adrenaline that flows through my system when I am doing things last minute. Exciting!

When you talk about your procrastination, you are going to make it feel insignificant. Your friends are going to try and get you to believe that they are better procrastinators than you are. You are also going to get so bored about saying you are a procrastinator that you would just want to get rid of the silly habit. I don't wish to get rid of my procrastination. I find that it helps me connect with others. But go on ahead and get rid of yours if you hate it so much.

I procrastinate and still get things done by creating my own deadline ahead of the real deadline and making myself forget the real deadline. In so doing I go through the whole steps of my procrastination and still get my work done ahead of time. For instance, when I have a paper due on a certain date, I will give myself about a month ahead to finish the paper. If I fail, I will still have a whole month to get the paper done. Giving myself a second deadline, I will give myself about two weeks before the real deadline. In the meantime I will be telling everyone about this paper that I am writing and telling them my own due date. Before I know it my mind believes that my deadline is the actual one and it reacts to it. When I get to the last days of my deadline I panic, and then my body dives into what I call the "last-minute" effect. Before I know it the paper is done. And I still have like two weeks to submit it.

So when you get the horse to the water, stroke it, sing to it, dance for it. Do what you must to trick it into drinking the water. But you can only achieve this if you know what the horse likes, and how it thinks. Go on and practice self-manipulation. It is amusing but effective.

Have a blast!
-Jane

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