Sunday, May 22, 2011
I set crazy deadlines for myself. I’ve always been super Type A so I set unrealistic deadlines, and gosh darn it—I ALWAYS meet them. Memorizing lines, completing homework, grading papers, putting together photo albums—always a target date set. Without deadlines, I can’t function. I really don’t think I’d ever get anything accomplished.
Naturally, I set deadlines for my writing too. In fact, I detail them in my planner. By the end of this month, I will (insert practically impossible goal). Believe it or not, usually I achieve most of my goals and meet most of my self-imposed deadlines. But not lately. I started my current WIP back in September. I wanted to finish by January. I mean, I wrote each of my first two projects in four months. I should be able to do that with every story, right?
In November (and then again in January) I got side-tracked with revisions on a previous project so I reset my deadline to March. Then to May. May 31.
And it's May 22.
I don’t know if it’s just this year, but things have been insane-o hectic. There’s been a lot of stuff going on that I need to do. Tutoring. Watching my son’s t-ball games. Chauffeuring my daughter to dance. Grading papers. But also stuff I don’t. Like check my Facebook every five seconds. Or obsess over my junk-riddled garage (that’s been like that for seven years). Or watch Easy A every time it’s on TV (I can now recite the John Hughes speech verbatim). Uh-huh. Self-destroying weapons of mass distraction.
Result: I’m making limited progress on my WIP’s rough draft. And my May 31 deadline is rearing its ugly head. And I get mucho upset with myself when I don’t meet these unrealistic self-imposed deadlines.
Guess who’s been rather depressedamundo lately?
*inches hand up*
Distractions + Deadlines = mucho Deadly for the WIP (and for me)
So I temporarily eliminated some distractions in my life. At first I was crazed—there was a distraction with thinking about not having the distractions. But now I hardly think about it. And guess what? I’m actually making a bit more progress on the WIP. The deadline looms, but I’m okay with extending it as long as I’m making substantial progress.
Last week, YA Highway’s Road Trip had us writing about rewards. The timing was bizarre. Just a day earlier I had decided to use my eliminated distractions as a incentive. When I’m done the rough draft, I get to indulge in them.
Any thing distracting YOU from getting the job done? Are any of the distractions eliminate-able? If they are, get rid of them. Trust me. It’s sooooo freeing. In so many ways.