August 3, 2015

Eloise Derrett

Okay, I know that this should really be titled “How to find the energy to get up off your backside and do something with your life.” I promise you though, if that title exists, I will sigh over the fact that it is taken, but buy the book anyway.

I am one of those people who would rather do nothing with their life but wear pajamas, eat corn chips and watch re-runs of Friends and Gilmore Girls. I would like to do that much more than the alternative, which is actually getting up off the couch and doing something semi-productive.


I am aware that there are others in the world who have this problem as well. So here, today I present to you this fool proof, fail safe, actually thought-out list of tactics so you can actually do something productive for once in your life. To those of you reading this instead of something more important, this goes out to you.

1: Set Goals!

If you write short, easy to achieve, bite-sized goals, the moment you finish writing the list you will feel much more accomplished. The very instant you tick one off you will get that happy, satisfied feeling of having actually done something beneficial to your life. You will feel happy as well, mega perk.

2: Create a working environment

This means having a clean, tidy, mess-free space to work. Take away your books, your phone, your dog/cat/ferret, or anything even semi-distracting and put it in a nice and messy pile on the floor, or in your doorway- anywhere that people will find it inconvenient and trip over it is alright actually. It’s also a good way to stop unwanted family members from getting into your room, because doors just aren’t enough, are they?

(Note: Step 2 has been tried, tested and proven to work by your motivated writer here)

3: Have breaks

You remember that list that I mentioned earlier? Well, if you tick a few items off it, I think that it’s alright for you to have a break. You could read a book, or eat lasagna, delve into the internet or even do the unthinkable opposite- delve into the outernet. It’s time to take the mentioned afore dog/cat/ferret for a walk. The clean, outdoor air is meant to be very relaxing after a long day of productivity- or so I’ve heard.


4: Guilt yourself

Now, my tactics for this work best under two conditions, these conditions being that you don’t talk to yourself and that nobody will tell you not to talk to yourself. After the preamble, you will never have guessed what the next strategy is. You talk to yourself. Narrate everything that you’re doing out loud because when you get distracted, it sounds horrible and you feel extremely disappointed in yourself and very guilty. That’s why it works so well, at least it does for me. Try it! Repeat after me: “I am going to watch another 4 episodes of *insert favourite TV show * instead of completing *insert very important task*.” Listen to how bad that sounds. That’s just part of the magic though.

5: Isolate yourself

This step is a very lonely one but it is important. If you find that you are still getting distracted, it is best for you to put a pause on all contact with the rest of the world. Isolate yourself from everyone- your friends, your family, your dog/cat/ferret, everyone. Especially those lucky people who don’t need to read fantastic lists like this to be motivated. They just make the procrastinators feel bad about themselves.

6: Enjoy what you’re doing

This one in my opinion is the most important step. Try to think of whatever you’re doing as fun and pleasant, rather than something you’re forcing yourself to do. Smile, laugh, even crack a pun or two to make the task more enjoyable. See, now that boring assignment isn’t as boring!

So, these are my 6 steps to being more motivated than you currently are. Coming from the Queen of Procrastination herself, you know that these tips are working when she is writing this at 11pm on a school night because she is so motivated! Now, you can either take these steps into your stride and blossom into a more productive you, or you can leave them and remain unchanged. You have procrastinated with the anti-procrastination list for long enough.

– Eloise Derrett

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