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Shivaun Hearne

Thank you for confirming what I've always felt works best for me: "stick with your work as long as you're cranking."
(I'm told _The Procrastination Equation_ by Piers Steel is good, but I haven't found the time to read it yet.)


I had to chuckle after reading your opening paragraph - that is so me! Your first two tips for handling procrastination are right on target for me. I would add one more to the first tip: fear of failure or lack of confidence. Sometimes, I will avoid doing something because I have convinced myself that I don't know what I'm doing or that I'll make a hash of things.

For me, it helps to remind myself that I'm in an industry that's pretty forgiving, relatively speaking. I'm not a doctor or a lawyer or a hostage negotiator, I'm a freelance writer/editor. No one ever died because of an overpriced proposal or missed typo. :)

Kate Hannigan

Thanks for your post. I was just sitting down to get some work done when I decided to read your blog instead. . .

Kelly Keck

Thanks for this. I have the same problem--I set out to do one thing and seventeen others interrupt or I get distracted.

I think it can be really helpful to identify what your most important task or your main goal is. It's easy to start one thing, then work on something else, and you feel like you're not procrastinating because, after all, you're working, right? But if you really need to get a piece of editing done, the fact that you've done three loads of laundry, gotten dinner started, and revamped your webpage doesn't really help with that.

I like kind of a middle-ground approach with breaks. To me, a regular break means I need to get up and move every hour. If I don't, I'll be in pain and less focused later. I do agree that it's best to take breaks as you need and not interrupt your flow just because you're "supposed to" take regular breaks.

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