This blog post is in response to Natalie’s 10 Day Freedom Plan Blog Challenge Day 7
Procrastination and overwhelm – the two deadliest roadblocks to your dreams of success.
We’ve all had it happen to us at varying points in our lives. Getting sidetracked and doing something they would rather do, and being paralyzed to inactivity when overwhelmed by what we have to accomplish.
These are real, and require discipline to overcome them. Let’s look at how.
Procrastination. Even the word is long and daunting to look at.
You should know the signs by now – everyone does – because it always starts with “I’ll get this done, but first…” and away you’re whisked until you realize you’ve accomplished nothing of the original task you set for yourself. Another time you find yourself in the paralysis of analysis, where you just can’t release your project into the wild because you can’t envision it as being the perfect thing it should be. You get bogged down in ever increasing circles of doubt, reorganizing, and rewriting that never seem to end because you just can’t get it perfectly correct.
You can fight the compunction for perfect submission or hesitation to begin by setting limits on yourself. For example, when you set your daily goals up also set up time to get a certain task done. Concentrate on that task, and no other until complete. Then go on to the next one. Be ruthless in sticking to that regimen. Do it long enough and you’ll find that you have minimized, if not eliminated, much of the cause of your failure to begin any project.
The other side of the Procrastination coin – perfectionism – can be fought by giving yourself a deadline for submission and then following through on that deadline. This does not mean that you have to be totally satisfied with the final product; I myself have gone back and re-edited submissions after posting them in order to improve on the product produced. There is nothing wrong with that. If it is early in your writing career I would insist on encouraging you to do just that. You’ll find that it forces you to improve your writing and clarifies your thinking.
Overwhelm. Have you ever found yourself having bitten off more than you can chew? Liar! Of course you have. We all have at some point.
Try the following to get around this roadblock: after prioritizing the tasks you need to do, take the first one and break it down into easily manageable chunks. Much like a small mouse with a large piece of cheese, you can then keep nibbling away at the task until it is done (or you have a very large mouse and no cheese!).
You see that it can be done. You can beat Procrastination and Overwhelm with a series of behaviors, provided that you do them on a regular basis and not in a haphazard fashion.
Try doing it for 30 days – which is the time necessary for actions to become habits – then get back to me and tell me how you did!