Resistance, distractions, going out, killing time; call it whatever you want, but one thing is for sure – procrastination will eventually kill you in the long run. Okay, maybe that statement was a bit on the dramatic side, but it will definitely do something similar to that.
A couple weeks back I was reading a book called "The War of Art" by Steven Pressfield. It laid down some dangerous gospel about how "resistance" can totally obliterate your creative ventures. It also provided me with the necessary advice on how to recognize when I am falling into a state of procrastinating so that I may be able to snap out of this trance.
Fighting procrastination is not easy. In fact, it is probably one of the hardest things many people are faced with. Like an alcoholic or drug-addict going to AA meetings and rehab, we must also find a way to check ourselves in some sort of Procrastinators Rehabilitation Center. Unfortunately, if that place were to exist, it would be considered a joke and rightfully so. Our rehab center lies within the depths of our cognition and we must check ourselves in before we turn into the next Amy Winehouse of our business or academic project.
As a chronic-procrastinator myself, I know that once I lose something called "Flow of work," I get extremely lazy and then my ego goes wild. He tells me that I will just postpone this work for later... Or the next day, "We'll do leg-day when we have a calm day at school," yeah right. "I'll start writing an article when I get enough to eat or when I finish my school-projects," what a load of crap.
Our procrastinating evil twin will try to bargain with us at a time. He/She might even justify why you shouldn't do it at all; your ego will drag you down and beat you on experience every. damn. time. How do we beat this ethereal force that screws up our mind? Well, by taking it one day at a time, by creating schedules and following them. By doing the work, even when you have no clue what "the work" has to be. When you are trying to write down a short story, song or business project, keep in mind that writer's block is the greatest of procrastinators. That feeling of not being able to produce a single productive word or thought is one that drives the best of us to the point of absolute insanity. Procrastination ruins us in these moments, but a way to get out of this is to, simply, soldier on through it. If you are fully aware that you are doing what you were put on earth to do, then you will be able to do it. The great artists of our times, and of the past, shined the most when they were under pressure or when their backs were against the wall.
It is only when we put effort and strategize our plans like a modern-day Alexander The Great, are we able to see that we are capable of so much; the creative folk are brilliant like that. We must also be wary of our voices, for they too can be the source of stupendous resistance. Have you ever been in the situation where you had to get some important schoolwork done and a friend of yours messages you to "Go out for one drink?" Who goes out for one drink? Nobody, it always ends up being 8-10 on a good night. Do not fall for that. Alcohol is not your friend, neither are any substances that alter the state of mind you are in. These substances were designed to keep people docile and stopping them from achieving their maximum potential.
Other than alcohol, you also have sex. Which is pretty fun, but it is also not your friend, ask any porn-addict or chronic-masturbator. Sex is something natural and fun, but there are many strings attached to it that can foil many of your creative or business endeavors. I am not saying to be a celibate nun, I am simply implying that you should not allow sex, or any other pleasure, dictate your life or distract you from primary objectives.
Lastly, I would like to expand my last words of advice to you.
My dear reader, whatever your profession might be, if you are a creative person or a calculating genius. Do not deny us your greatness and never settle for sub-par results. Give the world something to talk about, give us something to cry about, give us your absolute best and never shelf an idea that makes you smile.
Godspeed students, now get to work.
Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this blogpost are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official views of Phryme Magazine.