Creating my happy life on the other side of fear.

Sunday, 3 May 2015

Inside the mind of a procrastinator

I'm blogging less. Have you noticed? I have gone from averaging 5 posts per week to 3. Maybe that is expected after two years of blogging - if you are in it for the long haul, the urge to post as much as possible lessens. Nothing to say today? It's okay, the blog will still be there tomorrow. 
However, this is not true for me. My desire to write and blog has not lessened, it is as strong as ever. Is it the new, time-consuming hobby I picked up? (Yoga, I'm looking at you.) While it is partly responsible for it, that's not the entire reason either. 

I blame it on something else: My advanced skill level in procrastination. It has always been highly developed, but lately I kicked it up a notch. The reason is, once again, my big head full of big dreams. I spend a ridiculous amount of time dreaming about future-Miriam: A handstanding, green juice-drinking writing-ninja. 

I picture myself churning out a couple thousand words before breakfast for my next novel, then jugging a glass of antioxidant-rich and vitamin-packed juice before doing one-armed handstands and writing witty, intelligent and highly relevant blog posts for my rapt audience. 

The beauty of these dreams is that you don't have to do any of the actual work: No pain, all the gain. But that's why we dream, isn't it? It's such a pleasant way to pass the time, with no negative side effects. Well, maybe this one: If you get the idea in your pink-clouded head to actually make a go for it. I have ideas written down everywhere: In my day planner, on scraps of paper on my desk, in random text messages to myself. They give me a burst of energy and the determination that "this time, I will really do it!". So I sit down in front of my computer, my heart full of hope and my brain buzzing with ideas, and the procrastination ride begins:

I have jotted down my ideas, written my goals on a piece of paper and tacked them on my cork board (on top of the other 651 motivational notes written to myself), and I am thrilled: I'm ready to get started on the rest of my life! Fame and fortune, here I come. 
Hmm. Where should I start? Should I continue to work on the novel? Who knew that writing hundreds of thousands of words in a coherent manner would be so hard. No instant gratification. I get confused with time lines and my characters. I have started and re-started so many times that I get the characters of the different stories mixed up. I'm tired just thinking about it - but I'm sure every writer feels that way, right? Okay, let's just quickly read some motivational quotes on Pinterest, they will get me going. 
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20 minutes later     

You can make 6 figures blogging? Let's click on that, I need to learn these secrets. I would be happy with 4 figures! Or, let's be honest here, any figures at all. My grand total of blogging-related income is: $62.74, one free dress, one free pair of glasses. (I just spent another 5 minutes to look up that exact number. Accuracy is important.) Oh yes, the secrets. Okay, let's see....

... Hrumph, I knew it. The usual 'sign up with companies', 'sponsored posts', yada yada yada. For "all the secrets", buy her book. I should have known: If it looks to good to be true, it usually is.  

Oh, look at the time. Okay, close Pinterest and get to work! Hmm, I think I should buy Jeff Goins' book The Art of Work. It got such good reviews, and I'm sure I could learn something useful from it - let's just have a look how much it is. *Heads over to Amazon.*

40 minutes later

I almost bought another pair of shoes! Phew, that was close. Good thing they didn't have the metallic sea-green sandals in my size. Even though it is a shame - they are gorgeous! I bookmarked the page, have to check back regularly to see if they will restock them. They totally should! They would be perfect for dressing up a casual outfit of boyfriend shorts and a plain white Tee, or to pair with my LBD. Such a shame that they didn't have them in my size. Maybe another retailer will?

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70 minutes later

They are too expensive for me. Maybe one day when I make more money, but not right now. Oh yes, that's right, I'm supposed to be working on my future here. No more procrastinating! *Tells herself sternly: "Close all websites."*

Okay, done. 

I think I will work on my eBook instead of the novel. Oh, you haven't heard? I have decided to write an eBook about the trials and tribulations of being in your 30s. It will be a collection of essays about how disappointing it is to still not having life figured out when you have lived a third of it already. Hmm, that sounds a bit depressing actually. Maybe I should focus on a more positive topic? Or I could make it funny?  

90 minutes later

Uhm, my mind is a blank. Maybe I will get to it later. Okay, just write a blog post, that's easy, right?
Let me have a look at my post ideas... 
Oh, that's right, I haven't done a How To-post in months! That was supposed to be a series - should I resurrect it? But I'm not much of a teacher. I feel much more comfortable in the role of student. Why is that? Shouldn't I be at a stage where I teach others? Isn't that a rite of passage, yet another requirement of being an adult? Pass on your wisdom. But I don't have any. Is that negative self talk? 
Or normal human behaviour? Kino, what do you think?

*Opens Instagram to read some uplifting and motivational truths from 'her' yoga teacher, Kino MacGregor. Falls into the rabbit hole of Instagram.* 

120 minutes later

Omg, I just have wasted two hours without having achieved a single thing. Two hours! I am disgusted with myself. I don't deserve to call myself a writer, or a blogger. I am lazy! A despicable human being. I will be the boring person who keeps going on and on about all the things she is going to do 'one day' - and never will. 

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But that's not even the worst part. The worst part is: I didn't get the sandals.

Are you a fellow procrastinator? Or are you one of the super-human get-it-done kinda people? If you are, please share your secrets!




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14 comments

  1. I confess I'm an expert procrastinator more often than I should... hahah! ;)


    Lazy Penguins

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  2. This is pretty much me and exactly how I work haha!

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  3. I go through phases...I'll procrastinate for a while (mostly due to intimidation and fear of failure), but then one random day I'll start an activity and then I won't stop. Eventually, my energy will fade and then it's back to trying to find a way to remotivate myself.
    -Linds

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  4. Ha! So.... I'm glad to know it's not just me ;) This was funny.
    However, I often fall on the side of "do everything immediately" and get overwhelmed and frustrated, so I don't know if not being a good procrastinator is actually a better thing. It has its own problems.

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  5. You are too cute!! I love this post. And those shoes... Going to see if they have them in my size like right now.

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  6. Those shoes are totally Miriam. I love them too. Loved reading this post and smiling too. I procrastinate all the time and I often loose 2 hours in a row, too. Oops.

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  7. I hear ya girl! Once in a while I will get a spurt of energy and get stuff done, and it feels AMAZING. But then I go right back to my procrastinating ways haha
    Thanks for stopping by!

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  8. I'm so glad I'm not the only one! It's a miracle some days that I get anything done at all.

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  9. Those bursts of energy are amazing! I seem to vaguely remember an episode like that once or twice lol... Maybe we need the 'rest periods' (let's just call procrastination that, shall we?) for the energetic times? Or life just takes it out of us.

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  10. It seems like the golden middle way is the right way to go once again. Never fails.

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  11. Oh, how I love them! But not loving the price. My goal now is to find shoes like that for cheap - I will even abandon procrastination for that quest haha :-)

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  12. It's easily done, isn't it? Time never flies as fast as it does when browsing the web!

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  13. P.s. I am insanely jealous of your handstand. I'm still having trouble with the headstand (without having a wall behind me just in case). I feel like I haven't made progress in weeks!
    -Linds

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  14. Don't be too hard on yourself! You will get there. I had a particularly good day when I shared my handstand, usually I fall over after 0.2 seconds. Give it time, and you will see results! :-)

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