Last updated on March 18th, 2019 at 06:41 am
Do you make plans and schedules, but never actually do the things you want or have to?
Then feel like a failure. Like the biggest procrastinator on the planet?I know, been there.
Alright, story time. I remember 2012 for a couple of things:
- My best friend got married
- I finally got out of the slump I was in after graduating from university a year and a half ago
- I got the idea of writing a health book with healthy recipes, advice and all that stuff. Since I didn’t have a lot (or ANY extra) money back then – I decided to start a blog instead. It costs under $100 and it seemed people were making good money from it. This would be my opportunity to save money for the book.
Then, like with everything else in my life, I waited. And waited.
Then I waited some more for the right time to come. The time when I’m ready and know everything about starting a blog the right way.
I read about a million and four income reports from people who made a tremendous amount of money working wherever they wanted in the world.
When I read these reports, I felt inspired, motivated and I would start to daydream.
Like, I could almost feel how I’m doing this too and it’s working out for me and I’m living on some sunny island, writing blog posts while drinking cocktails out of a coconut. Being able to support my family and retire my parents earlier.
But. Then I would just, for some reason, not do about it. Not ever do it. Things that were more important came and somehow the time was never right.
Until 2015 came and I felt really lost. At that point I decided I have nothing to lose, so I’ll just start this blog. And I did.
But the getting ready part didn’t end there. My blog design was never perfect and my content was never good enough to be seen by other people’s eyes.
It was mine and it sucked.
So I’d keep adjusting my site, keep redoing my content, keep perfecting “my strategy” and schedule, planning to get serious about it all this next month.
The time somehow never came that year. I always had work to do, places to go, people to see.
I thought that I need to be more productive, that there’s something other people know, that I don’t know.
And then I started to make plans and schedules and to do lists and reading all the time management articles that I could find. That took a long time and it gave me the illusion that just because I read all these books and listened to all these podcasts, I would somehow be able to magically finish all my tasks.
I thought that if I invested one hour planning my entire week I will be able to finish everything sooner.
I got into the habit of making these silly plans and full-on strategies on a regular basis.
And I can tell you: this was the biggest waste of time for me. They never happened.
Now, years after, I actually figured out how to stop always just getting ready and to finally get my life together.
How I stopped getting ready and actually got my life (sorta) together
Tip #1: Do.
Before you make a complete plan and figure out the entire strategy imagining what could and what couldn’t happen – just do. Stop wondering how this would work and what wouldn’t work. Whether this is a good idea or not.
Because honestly – you don’t know.
And the only way to know is to finally do whatever you need to do and see how it goes.
To not think that the whole world will crash and burn if you don’t fulfill your crazy goal by the crazy deadline you’ve set for yourself. If you fail.
Just do and see what happens.
Tip #2: Find beauty in the journey
If you do everything with stress, obsession, pressure and no real motivation other than getting to your goal, then that whole time between the start and finish will suck.
I’ve spend hours and hours and hours working on things just because I thought they’d bring me some enormous benefit. And I was hating every minute of it. It was like doing my homework with someone making me do it. Like self-discipline on steroids.
And once that much hated task was done, true I would be relieved, but then I would be crushed when I didn’t get the result I wanted. And there would be 10 more much hated to do’s waiting for me.
So now, I focus on feeling good. Not that you can feel good all the time, but I focus on not hating what I do. On doing everything with more excitement, with love and with thought.
And this is key: not overdoing it!
Whenever I start feeling “that’s enough” – it usually is, so I take a break.
For example if I want to batch create content for my blog, I do whatever I can in one day. If I can write just one article – well, that’s it for the day and I schedule it. In the past it was always first write 5 articles and then schedule them and edit them until they’re unrecognizable. Those 5 articles didn’t take one day. They took weeks and didn’t perform well.
But when I focus on one thing at a time, give it my all and then FINISH IT – I feel better, less stressed and I am actually quicker.
When the things you do feel good and you see you’re making progress, you aren’t going to want to put them off.
Tip #3: Best Things Aren’t Planned
Obviously, life happens when you’re making other plans. So stop obsessing over them. Stop expecting things to go this or that way.
Trust your life, it’s trying to show you something that’s good for you. I never thought, ever, that I wanted to work with people. I never thought that I would ever be writing a blog.
My belief was always that I like to be alone and focused and to work in a laboratory or at a desk job. I seriously thought I was an introvert or just a weirdo. But then life put me more and more in situations where I had to work with more people.
And it surprised me. I really enjoyed being around others and felt happier and more alive when I was in constant contact with others. It brought me to life and I felt like I was a kid again.
While at my desk – I felt like I’m dying. I didn’t see any point in what I was doing and I was gaining weight on top.
Working with people was not something that I had planned, ever, it was never a goal of mine. But it’s something that I now know is for me. And if I didn’t trust life, if I was obsessing over my plans and rejecting what was happening in front of me – I would probably be somewhere locked in a laboratory feeling miserable right now.
Same thing with starting a blog. It wasn’t something I dreamed about when I was a kid, I wasn’t good at writing and talking to strangers wasn’t something I was interested in. But as I grew more and more, I needed to do it. I had to share what I knew and not keep those thoughts to myself, imagining that I’m something special and that others have no idea about life or anything else. I needed to share, even if I wasn’t an expert at everything.