Photo by Pixabay "Change Habits and be Productive"
My goal for the past week has been to write five articles a day, so you can imagine how easy it is to get out of the flow of things. My mind would start to wander and pretty soon I was talking out loud by myself, arguing with a person I hadn't seen in years because a silly memory was sparked. And then I found myself watching a couple videos on Facebook, only to get mad at myself and stop.
Writing five articles a day may seem like a great goal to have, and it is, I won't deny that. It has been rewarding to look back at the week and see all of the productivity I've had. But if I forget to find topics the night before to write about, or it's taking me longer than normal to research for an article, it can be easy to get distracted.
So that day when I found it hard to stay on track and write my five articles, I saw something that inspired me. I was about to close down a website I had been researching a subject on when a message popped up. Instead of one of those popups that say, "Give us your email so we can send you updates on our latest blogs," it gave me a yes or no question. It said, "If you could do differently tomorrow what you did today, would you?" I immediately said yes. I knew I would do tomorrow differently; I had to or else I would end up like how I did yesterday. Chores piling up while I struggled to get the last of the articles finished.
After getting this call to action, I compiled a list of ways to help myself and others when struggling to stay on task. It's a list of ways to do things differently today than you do yesterday. Because who wants to repeat a mistake more then once?
Wake Up Early
Photo by Pixabay "Waking Up Early"
Whether it's writing articles or some other task that needs to get done, waking up late is not your friend. Sure it may feel great to get a few extra hours in, but when you want to be productive, a late start won't help you. Instead find an early time that you feel comfortable waking up at, make yourself breakfast, and start on it right away. Save your "you time" for later in the afternoon.
I start my work at seven thirty and I've had to learn that when you get things done earlier, it leaves you so much more free time in the day. If you get it over with at the beginning, you'll spend the rest of your time unwinding and resting.
Don't go on the Computer
Photo by Pixabay "Use a Notebook"
For many people, not opening another tab and going on a social media website can be hard. And you may think to yourself, "But I need to go on the computer, it's the only place that I write." The truth is, the computer is not necessary for writing or taking care of all of your work. You need to find a notebook, dedicate it to your articles, outline what you're going to write, and then write in there. It may seem slower, but it's much better than watching time killing "dog saves child" videos.
Find an Accountability Partner
If you could do tomorrow differently than you did today, would you have someone help you? A lot of the time, we can't be accountable for ourselves. It's too easy to give ourselves a pat on the back and say that we earned an extra hour long break. We need someone who isn't going to give us the easy way out. And we also need someone who is going to encourage us when we think we can't go on any longer. My husband serves as this, when I'm feeling like finishing an article is too hard in that moment, he tells me, "You can do it!" It's a simple statement, but it's the truth and it helps.
Make a schedule For Tomorrow
Photo by Pixabay "Scheduling Your Day"
When in doubt Write it out! If you're not sure you can keep yourself on task or get everything you need done in an orderly fashion, make a schedule. Make a starting point for when you're going to write, then give yourself small ten to twenty minute breaks after every two articles.
Then schedule the rest of the day and schedule everything. Don't just schedule chores and errands you have to run, that will only look discouraging. Schedule in an hour or two here and there in the afternoon dedicated to vegging out and having you time. It will give you something to look forward to when writing your articles in the morning
Photo by Pixabay "Set up a Rewards System"
Let's say that today you wrote four articles for five hours. You researched and worked hard on those four articles, but you felt drained after finishing them. Yes someday you know you'll start to get some sort of viewership or passive income, but right now you don't feel so satisfied.
So tomorrow you can do something different; you can give yourself a reward. If you work hard, you can do something that will make the hard work feel worth it. So set up a rewards system for finishing those articles or whatever else you're working hard to finish. It will motivate you to finish and give you the satisfaction when it comes to an end.
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It can be hard to stay focused in an ADD world that demands our attention. But when we set ourselves up for success, we can get ahead of those distractions. It can be hard to stay on task, so we have to set up a plan of action to change tomorrow and do what we didn't do today. We have to set up a way of doing things or else it will fall apart day after day.
We hear so many people say, "Just do it!" And it's true, we should just do it. We should just get it done and live our dreams and finish our goals. But it can help if we plan ways to make those words effective.