There is something tremendously freeing about finishing something you don’t want to do. It’s as though a weight has been lifted from our shoulders and we suddenly feel so much more in control of our time management. The problem, however, is mustering up the motivation to actually finish these tasks, especially when no one else is checking up on you.
I’ve been putting off starting my next Time Diet book (this one is for teachers!) I had everything planned and outlined, but I had been coming up with every excuse in the world to avoid sitting down with my computer and actually starting the first chapter.
A few days ago, I finally sat down and said, “OK, I’m not getting up from this desk until I have three pages finished.” It was tough, but I did it, and when I was done I wanted to shout it from the rooftops! I was so proud of those three little pages.
My Summer Plan
This has now become my summer mission. I was a little intimidated about summer’s rapid approach. I have no “boss” in the summer. If I don’t finish enough work every day to keep me on track with my goals…nothing happens. Nobody checks up on me and tells me to work harder. It takes a tremendous amount of self-discipline to stay motivated and I was a little worried that I wouldn’t be up to the task.
Now I have a goal: Six days a week, I will write at least 3 pages in my book this summer.
Here are three things to keep in mind as you’re planning to tackle your own “dreaded” task.
1) State Your Plan
I just publicly stated my plan of writing 3 pages per day this summer. I could have kept this goal to myself, but then I’d only be accountable to me. Now, I’m also accountable to all of you. Get a friend or family member on board with your plan too.
2) Set Aside Time
Saying you’ll do something is only half the battle. Saying specifically when you’re going to do it turns a goal into a plan. As you’re crafting your schedule for the day, don’t just add your task to the end of your lengthy to-do list. Set a specific time that you’re going to work. Think of it as an appointment with yourself.
3) Recognize Excuses
When you don’t want to do something, it’s very easy to start making excuses. Learn to recognize when you’re doing this and stop. Making excuses is easy. Finding a way is rewarding.
Check out The Time Diet’s latest video. “The Best Graduation Gift Part 2”
Blog Photo Credit: David Castillo Dominici