We’ve all been there.
On the days you might feel unmotivated and uninspired.
Days when you feel like it’s hard to get yourself going and excited about tackling your to-do list.
So: what to do? How to fix it? How to get yourself back into the swing of things?
First step: Are you unmotivated or are you burnt out?
One is when your world is feeling depleted and you actually need to fill up your inspiration well, or get out of the house and stop working.
So check-in to yourself. Are you burnt out? Or are you unmotivated?
If you are feeling truly depleted and burnt out, you need to honor that feeling—even if it means not getting that thing done today.
So first and foremost, make sure that you’re aware of whether you’re actually in a place of needing a legitimate break to restore your energy, or if it’s just common flu procrastination and you just need to get some shit done because you’ll feel better about it afterward.
Here’s a helpful flowchart:
If you’re just feeling the common flu symptoms of procrastination, the best cure is to get some shit done!
To me, if I’m just having common flu symptoms of procrastination, I always remember that I actually feel a lot better after I get something done.
If I sit around in procrastination all afternoon, I am going to feel kind of pissy and grumpy and grouchy.
So I ask myself:
“What could I do now that I actually feel interested in doing?”
“Do I just set a time to work on this one thing I’m really putting off?”
I’ve talked about Brian Tracy’s great book, Eat The Frog before, and that’s what he calls doing that thing you’re putting off – eating the frog. The old saying goes, “If the first thing you do in the morning is eat a live frog, that’s the worst thing that can happen to you all day!” In other words,
Do the thing you want to do the LEAST, first.
I notice when I’ve got something on my to-do list I’m kind of avoiding because – I don’t feel like doing it, but I know it’s really important and needs to be done, I just gum through and get as much done in an hour, because it feels SOOOOOOOOOOOOO much better to have things finished than for it to still be on my to-do list and have done sweet frickall nooooothing!
Set a timer to help you eat your frogs.
One of the things that works best for me is setting a timer to focus on that froggy I don’t want to eat.
- You can use a plain, ordinary kitchen timer, or the timer on your phone if you like!
- I like the Self Control App because it actually blocks access to websites that are time wasters.
- If you just want to time how long you work, the Awareness app is nice, because it sounds a Tibetan singing bowl after you’ve been working for an hour, to prompt you to take a break!
Break big hairy scary tasks down into smaller bites.
If you’re really, really procrastinating about something, break it down into really miniature to-do steps because they’re so much easier to complete, and they’ll give you momentum to keep on going. When you put something like, “Launch new program,” or “Build website” on your to do list, that’s not helpful at all, duckies! I mean, that’s like saying, “Be a better person,” or “End world hunger.” Yeah, that’s lovely, but HOW?? So when you have a big hairy, scary thing you’re procrastinating about, try breaking it down into much smaller tasks.
So if the overall goal is “Launch program,” you might have, “Write an outline,” “record one audio” or “email friend about offering a bonus” on your to do list. The other awesome-o thing about these smaller tasks is that when they’re done, they feel like a win! They are little itty bitty successes that make you feel GREAT as you work towards your bigger goal.
Very, very important to give ourselves these wins, as it will increase our motivation to keep going!
Because remember – Momentum builds momentum!
Add the time to your to dos.
When you’re breaking down your list into smaller bites, make sure that if you’re procrastinating, you drill your to-do list down into bites that can be concluded in 20 minutes. If you’ve got a whole list of emails that need to be written, then you say I want to do 5 emails, and I’ve got 20 minutes to make that happen. That’s what works for me. That way, when you’re looking at your list you don’t say to yourself, “Oh, I only have an hour and that thing will take too long!” You can say, “I have an hour, so I can do these two or three things.” BOOM! Done. Success and forward motion!
And that’s what it’s all about, darlinghearts! Forward motion.
Eat one frog a day and you’ll be well on your way to success!
Don’t care how ya need to make it palatable — whether you saute in garlic, deep fry, or create a vegetarian beanlog shaped into a frog… as long as it’s done, that’s what counts.
To your shining, divine success,
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