Two conversations about taking a day off from writing

Two inner conversations about taking the day off from writing, in which we explore the inner workings of the procrastinator and the recovered procrastinator. :)

Observe.

Conversation 1. The Procrastinator

Daybreak.

“Oh god. It’s too early. I don’t want to write. Besides, I need a day off. I mean, I’ve been pushing myself so hard and everything going on right now is just so stressful. Plus I couldn’t sleep well last night. I really just need some down time to regroup and get in the mood to write. There’s no point otherwise, right? I’ll just take the morning off and write in the afternoon.”

Later that morning.

“This is great! See, I really just needed some time to goof off. I can write later, it’ll be fine.”

Mid-day.

“Okay, wow, that was great. Maybe I should start writing now. But I better check my email first. And I’ve got to call Kathy too. Plus my desk is disorganized, I’ll never be able to concentrate on my writing, I better clear it off. THEN I’ll really be able to focus.”

Later.

“Where did the day go? I’m exhausted. There’s no way I can write now. I better just start over tomorrow. I can write early, when I wake up. That’ll get me back on track.”

And, repeat.

Conversation 2. The Recovered Procrastinator

Daybreak.

“I get to take today off! I hit that major milestone with my draft yesterday. I’m going to celebrate today by putting my feet up and savoring a full, glorious day of guilt-free indulgence and enjoyment. Then back to the writing tomorrow, until I hit the next milestone.”

And, repeat.

What a difference, right?

And the best part is how it FEELS inside. So. Much. Better.

Your turn

What do you think? How does procrastination FEEL to you? How does truly rewarding yourself feel when you’ve made a major accomplishment? What’s that worth to you?

Share your comments on the blog.

Warmly,

 Jenna

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Comments

  1. No apologies. I love to write. It’s a joy, it’s entertainment (as I laugh, cry and fume over my characters, some of whom very nearly rank as real world friends) and it’s a major stress reliever. A few years ago I learned that writing will alleviate a migraine, at least in my brain…can’t speak for anyone else’s. It’s an escape.

    And it’s necessary. When I don’t write bad things happen in the real world. I get stressed and irritable. I lose patience. Worst of all, I get bored. For me that’s a dangerous place. Procrastinate? No. Jump between stories, sometimes; go from a nearly finished script to crafting a rough outline of a new plot, certainly. Pause to interact with people, definitely.

    But never ever get between me and my keyboard. You might find yourself rewritten. ;)

  2. Nice one Jenna. It reminded me of the keynote I attended at the NAPO conference this year. Here is a link to the The Science of Willpower – there is now science to back up the anecdotal evidence that decision making (and the way we decide) help us achieve in the long run.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W_fQvcBCNbA

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