Since I was a child, I’ve had to battle procrastination. My mind rejects the concept of time management. My greatest vice is the pursuit of instant gratification.
But, at the same time, I’ve also always felt a strong need to make every second of my life count by continually learning as much as humanly possible and improving every aspect of myself.
This cognitive dissonance totally screws up my sanity.
Early this year, I realised that acting jobs were going to be slow in coming, which meant that I was going to have many, many free days to spend however I liked. I knew that if I didn’t manage myself properly, I would end up parking myself in front of the computer 10 hours a day surfing the net aimlessly or playing WoW.
So I came up with a masterplan.
To motivate myself, I bought a nice notebook to make lists in. (I love pretty notebooks and making lists.)
I marked out several categories of “tasks” in my notebook. Under each category is a long list of relevant task items. For example:
- reply john’s email
- pay credit card bill
Not So Urgent Tasks
- do nails
- call susan about collecting DVD
- work on new project
- read an acting book
- practice singing
- rehearse a monologue
- play WoW
- watch an anime
- read a novel
- go jogging
- work out at home
(The above is just a sample. Every category consists of many more items, of course.)
The idea was to make sure I balanced my activities so I wouldn’t neglect anything I felt was important for my personal growth and well-being.
So my plan was that, each day, I would first tackle urgent tasks, then spend my day fulfilling time quotas on each category:
- 5 hours for work
- 3 hours for self-improvement
- 3 hours for fun
- 1 hour for exercise
I would mix and match. Do some work first, then have some fun, then do some more work. However I did it, I would perform one or two tasks from each category, rotating daily so that every task will have received some attention by the end of the week.
I thought this idea was really cool when I first devised it. And I had a lot of fun making the lists. I couldn’t wait for the next day to come. I wanted to start on my plan already.
And then the next day came and the first thing I did was write a blog.
I posted my blog and then I got distracted by all the evil internetly distractions. Started surfing around aimlessly. I told myself I’d do it for just awhile. But awhile turned to six hours and then there wasn’t any more time in the day to do anything else.
This repeated itself the entire week.
I did manage to tick off some urgent tasks (but that category fills up at about the same rate as items get ticked off) and I blogged daily.
But that was all. I didn’t do anything else! Not even the fun stuff I knew I would enjoy doing! I usually even enjoy doing self-improvement activities, so I really had no reason to proscrastinte on those!
Whoever procrastinates having fun??!
So my masterplan was a total failure. Not a single day was spent as planned and my notebook rotted in a corner of my table, and I tried to pretend that it never existed. I turned into a slug.
And then my friend rang me up about doing that day job, so I gave up my brilliant masterplan and accepted the job offer.
I am so ashamed of myself!
But I’m giving myself a chance to redeem myself. The projects in my day job has dried up for now and there looks to be no work in March, which means I can attempt to carry out my masterplan once again.
I’m so excited about it.
I think I’m usually more excitable in the planning stage than in the execution stage. Which is the whole trouble.
But I just gotta force myself to do it no matter what.
Life is so crazy and there are so many things to do. I can never understand people who complain about being bored. There are so many things to do in life and not enough time as it is.
Wish me luck!