Overcoming procrastination

I’m not a natural at Getting Sh*t Done. If I’m excited about something I have no problem cracking on with it, but I definitely have tasks that I migrate from day to day and week to week in my journal.

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Here are some top tips that have helped me overcome my urge to put off my purchase orders, expenses, invoices and generally shitty but necessary jobs list.

The “should I be doing this” model. In one of my first office jobs I was a researcher for a team of headhunters with big egos and bigger lists of jobs they wanted to delegate to me. My then-boss taught me a great model for prioritising which really stuck with me.

  • Ask yourself – should you be doing this? i.e. is the task necessary? What will happen if it doesn’t get done? I’m a total perfectionist but this question alone helps me eliminate about 30% of my “ooh, it would be really great if…” tasks.
  • Now ask the question again. Should you be doing this? Is it even your job? Are you best placed? Or is someone farming something out to you because you are a people pleaser/soft touch? You don’t have time to please people by accomplishing their work – you are busy pleasing your boss by accomplishing yours!
  • One last time. Should you be doing this? At this moment in time, is this the most urgent and important task on your list? If not – why are you working on it? My team knows that if I am filing, I’m definitely doing it because I’m putting off something important. Catch yourself before another day goes by.

 

Pomodoros and power hours. These are both bursts of intense focus to help you stay focussed on a task for a set period of time. Great if you’re someone who gets distracted easily – set a timer for 25 minutes (Pomodoro method, especially good for studying) or 60 minutes (yup, that’ll be a Power Hour, use for writing or larger tasks). Accomplished a burst of focus? Take a short break and reward yourself – espresso, five minutes of social media (set a timer!) or whatever is going to work best. Then do another one!

 

Scare yourself. Take a minute to close your eyes and visualise not getting this done. Will you get told off by accounting, be taken to court for unpaid bills, never be refunded for your travel and be unable to buy bread, eventually get fired for being ineffective? It doesn’t have to be totally realistic – but allow yourself to remember how much worse it could be if you keep putting it off.

 

The big guns. Get your most responsible friend/mum to nag you about this task until it’s completed, if all else fails. Psychologically – nagging works. What’s more annoying, telling your mum that you’re procrastinating and inviting her to nag you, or just filling out that damn payment request form?

 

Hope some of this helps you – let me know in the comments!

 

Thanks for reading,

PP x

Can I bullet journal if I’m not creative?

When you first start to discover bullet journalling and you check out Pinterest and Instagram, it can seem really daunting. Beautiful illustrations, carefully ruled and thought-out spreads, intricate mood mandalas – all look intimidating and time-consuming when what you really want is to be more productive and have more free time, not lots of extra swirly headings to add to your to do list.

The basic principle behind the bullet journal is that it’s your own book, everything goes into it, and it’s set up in a way that works for you, unlike a printed planner or diary. So the short answer is that it doesn’t matter how pretty it is or isn’t as long as you’re making the set up work for you. I found an old bullet journal of mine from when I first started – and full disclosure, I like to decorate mine – and was surprised how plain it was. But actually, the basic system and the way I use it hasn’t changed very much over the last eighteen months. I’ve just got way nicer pens now!

The best thing you can do in my view is just start. Make mistakes, accept it won’t be perfect (I have so many mistakes hidden under stickers in my journal!) and start to learn the system and make it work for you. This video from Ryder Carroll is a great place to start. 

Let me know how it goes – and thanks for reading,

PP

 

Monthly spreads and how I use them

I thought it might be useful to share my monthly bullet journal set ups with you. Just like my weekly spreads, I capture events (for me, mostly work trips and variances to my daily schedule plus anything social like weddings). I have a section for tasks not allocated to a particular week and I also refer back to my yearly goals to make sure the month is set up with monthly goals that move these forward. I also set a couple of focuses for the month – for example, one of mine for July is to ramp up my running since I have a marathon coming up in November.

I also use a monthly habit tracker as well as a weekly one.

Thanks for reading!
PP 🍑

First post – and why I use a bullet journal

Hi everyone! I’m Helene aka Planner Peach. I started bullet journaling about eighteen months ago – I’ve always been into stationery and lists but Ryder’s idea of corralling them all into one book really stuck with me. I’m also into brush lettering, mostly to make my journal look better – it’s more appealing to me when it looks colourful and pretty! Here are a couple of pics so you know what to expect from me – I hope also to share video with you although I’m still a little camera shy! Hope this inspires you to start your own organisation journey. Thanks for reading –
PP 🍑