This clever trick is a way to clarify what you need to do, and add boost of motivation to close the loop by actually getting it done
When you’re freelancing without any actual Bill Lumburgh-like boss hovering over your desk asking for TPS reports, odds are you have trouble with the great beast that is procrastination.
Don’t deny it—that only wastes more time. Just admit it and we can move on.
Working alone means you inevitably find a millionty zillion other things to do than the one thing you’re meant to be doing; especially on a big job you’ve been given lots of time to do. Also when you have a tonne of different things to do and you don’t know which one to start.
I have two solutions for you:
1. Make a really cool excuse for not doing the thing you’re meant to be doing. Impress yourself with how cool you are.
2. Use the trick I’ve found works 100% of the millionty zillion times I’ve done it:
You have a bunch of things that need to be sent this week, right? At the start of the week (usually Sunday night, avoid doing this on Monday morning) write out the main emails that you have to write out that will go with the attachment you’ll be creating.
You write out the email telling them you’ve attached the thing you have to do, and if you’re anything like me, having a full drafts folder will irk your OCD brain into action. (Having an empty drafts folder = you’re all done.)
Don’t use it as a to-do list. Use your calendar for that.
This guy in the picture does it, and his drafts folder is empty. You can tell by his happy little eyes.
One of the biggest problems with procrastination is not knowing where to start –Drafts Folderpinination (the official term I made up just now for this practice) is the best way to just get started.
You’ll inevitably have other stuff that comes in throughout your workday that’s due before week’s end. Guess what? You just add it to the drafts folder.
It helps you move through the work faster as well. When you’re in ‘actual-work-mode’ (not ’emailing-folks-mode’) and have the emails already written, you can just dump the attachment into them. Send them off to move onto the next thing you need to do. You don’t have to switch gears to emailing-folks-mode because you already did that on Sunday night. When you were drinking.
Obviously, by the end of the week, your drafts folder should be empty. If it’s not — you failed Drafts Folderpinination.