I am sure I am not the only one who is top quality procratinative material. If I could sell it, I would be sleeping on a bed of fifty pound notes, my skills are that fantastic.

Now, this is not a skill I am proud of, and I’ve been trying to work out the reason why I do it. If I look at it on the surface, I must just be a bonkers lady as all the stuff I keep putting off is loads of fun. I put off my main creative dreams, being a bellydancer and being an artist/illustrator/comic creator, even though doing the stuff that would get me closer to these precious dreams is AWESOME and FUN. I get to dance around for my career progression? Draw lots of awesome mermaids and indian patterns? Why would a sane person avoid doing that?

Grumpy procrastination was rife in the 1940's too

Grumpy procrastination was rife in the 1940's too

I think it is because all these things aren’t for fun any more, as they are now all in the category of Stuff I Should Be Doing And Have To Do, and the real meaning of that category is, Stuff I Should Have Already Done And That I Am A Failure For Not Doing, Thus I Suck.

Obviously I am not going to be motivated to do stuff if that’s how I feel about it. I find to-do lists very difficult to complete as it stresses me out how much stuff I have to do and how long everything takes. And then I think, If only I had done this earlier! and I get grumpy and ignore the to-do list by daydreaming, watching tv, napping or looking up animal facts on the interwebs.

I don’t think “should” is a particularly useful word to use. It sounds like Scold. I’ve been reading Louise L Hay’s You Can Heal Your Life and she has a big beef about the word “should”. “Should” means “wrong”. Saying “should” makes me feel very bad and life I have done something naughty. It’s not getting me anywhere.

I hereby declare that I am replacing “Should” with “Could”. Could means choice, and that I don’t have to do it. Hooray!

More strategies for Team Could:

  • Keeping my evil To Do list online on todoist.com, and using my page-a-day diary (where I usually write my horrid to do lists) for writing down all the stuff I have actually done. Like a book full of achievements! Written in pretty pens!
  • Chop up my day into hours of time dedicated to doing stuff. For Example: For 21 hours today, I do not need to work on my business. For three hours today, it’s business time. Even if I don’t get a lot done in those three hours, man I still did three hours of something! Woop!
  • Ask myself, “Do I want to do that?” Honestly, the answer is usually yes. Then I can say, “Yes, I want to do 15 minutes of sit ups/send a press email out/set up an account on that marketing site/look for a pigeon/work on my infanct comic/create a website”. I have already decided that I do want to do it, and I have told the world. Affirming that I want to do it and that all is good before I attempt it helps.