Our dinner conversation with friends a few nights ago got us into a discussion about study habits, and we ended up talking about procrastination.
During my college days, 97% of my grades were derived from my paper writing abilities. The other 3% were based on my completion of meaningful paintings. So, naturally, I rarely crammed for 'tests', I just put off writing my papers until I could sit in front of the computer for 6-7 hours on end, surrounded by a pile of musty reference books (you know that smell that library books have?), and let my thoughts flow onto the screen. It was probably a great 10-pager about systematic theology or a 30 page thesis on the purpose of the church. Ah, the good old days.
It was during these wonderful academic years that I realized I am someone who works really well when a deadline is given. Perhaps I should have known this about myself a little earlier, given the fact that the 6th grade version of the.home.werker would put off scooping poop in the back yard or cleaning the 'kids bathroom' until 4pm on Saturday, squeaking out my allowance by the skin of my teeth. But, I got it done! (And off to the Dollar Store I would go, to procure some candy for my own personal enjoyment during church the next morning).
So here I am, in a week without any concrete deadlines, feeling the need to impose some on myself so that I can successfully tackle that to-do list I wrote about yesterday. It's time to decide when I am going to schedule that appointment at the travel clinic, and how I want to go about reading the book in global poverty. It's the non-traditional, non-email, non-conference call stuff that easily slips through the cracks...simply because it's not something I do every day...so why do it today?
Ok, ok. This is just a glimpse into what I tell myself vs. how I motivate myself to get things done. And now I am realizing it's time to go and be around people because this extrovert is going a little batty without the buzz of people around me. Do you ever find you are more productive when other people are around you, also werking on something? Even on the weekends, if my neighbors are out werking in their yards, I am to...and I get so much more done! Time to go find some company among the strangers at a coffee shop.