Blocking the writer can hit all of us at the most embarrassing moments, but today I want to give the authors seven pieces of advice that are prone to procrastination. Some of us are like the tortoise and the Hare-rushing to the finish line WIP, only to be distracted by the comforts or distractions of life, like the nap of the legendary hare.

Sitting in front of a blank screen can be painful and make everything else urgent. But what is more important than finishing your project and achieving your writing goals?

Procrastination is a natural response to an unpleasant situation, when we do not want to finish the work. We can catch up on our emails, watch a TV show instead, or read our library by color. These aren’t terrible things to do, just obstacles as you finish your next great novel. Whether you’re closer to the rabbit or the turtle, keep reading for tips to avoid procrastination.

1. Get used to it.

One way to stay on track with your novel is to write every day or on a set schedule. There are many scientific reasons why daily writing can make procrastination easier. A regular schedule can reduce decision-making fatigue because your routine automates this part of your thinking. This rationalization unravels our minds and allows us to focus more on our writing task.

You do not know what the fatigue of decision-making is? This is the result of tens of thousands of decisions we make every day that use our ability to do more. It could be socks that you wear or skipping all together for flip-flops, but after making a constant selection throughout the day, the mind becomes overloaded and even simple decisions become too difficult.

Another way to strengthen this daily routine is to use visual cues. Most people are wired to respond to visual cues, which may explain why we can be attracted to decorative panels that say things like “LIVE, LAUGH, LOVE” (guilty, by the way!) If you want to start a writing habit (or refresh an old one), try leaving notes for yourself in the house.

  • Put sticky notes in places where you are most likely to distract and prevent writing.
  • Add encouraging messages to your whiteboard by recording your progress daily.
  • Include a favorite writing quote on your monitor to inspire you.
  • Let your inner encourager stimulate your writing and you want to introduce yourself and write more.

Maintaining a writing habit is important for productive writers as it has many benefits. This releases creative energy through less decision-making. This allows writers to write their novels faster, as this makes them work at this time. This makes your writing stronger because you flex your writing muscles more often. Take that, procrastination!

2. Plan your time.

Write regular application for planning. Here are some tips for scheduling your writing sessions that could make you more productive. Use what works and skip what doesn’t, because everyone has a unique writing process.

Method By Ivy Lee.

This ancient method allows authors to release their mental energy and prioritize their to-do list on a daily basis.

This system forces a person to think about the end of the day. You write down what you want to achieve the next day by stopping at a maximum of six items. This forces the writer to decide what the most important things are. If you have a doctor’s appointment or you need to go shopping, add it to the list. Make sure that your goal of writing per page or 500 words is also on your list. Items that did not occur are added to the list the next day.

Keeping track of daily tasks and minimizing them to the six most important ones has been used in large companies for more than 100 years. It prioritizes the most important tasks and eliminates stress. We can also use these productivity ideas for our writing.

  • Minimize interruptions.
  • Honor your writing time.
  • Disable notifications.
  • Wear noise cancelling headphones.
  • Do everything you need to do for your optimal writing time.

Build in the time of wiggle.

It takes a few minutes to settle down and get into your writing mode. Structure your time so that you can spend most of your time writing. The goal is to have more words on the page, right? Find a simple celebration that suits you and stick to it. Do you prefer one of these methods to start writing?

  • Many writers start their writing sessions by writing a page or two of what they wrote the day before.
  • Some leave their work on a cliff hanger, which they like to make the next day.
  • Other writers dive right in and know that their first paragraph or two is likely to be removed.
  • The Pantsers play with their characters and listen to what they say, what should happen next.
  • The plotters find the next scene and build it up from their notes.

3. Set wrong deadlines (and telephone reminders!)

One way to fool your mind by working on your WIP is to set up a dummy schedule before the actual deadlines. When planning a project, I like to give myself more time. If I get entangled with another job or life happens—as it is— I don’t have to have so much stress.

Set up reminders on your phone. Mine give me a boost in the week and the day before, I need a completed written paper. This can be done in advance and are useful ways that I can keep responsible for my writing goals. It is important to save time and make your schedule more flexible if you are trying to write more productively.

4. Train your elephant.

This is an allusion to a very interesting book called the hypothesis of Happiness: finding modern Truth in ancient wisdom, by Jonathan Haidt, in which he extrapolates truths from the most important world philosophies and finds similarities in the way in which everyone applies similar life lessons.

In his book, he illustrates the psychology behind motivation or why-we-do-things-what-we-do-with an analogy. Haidt compares our brain to a rider on an elephant and explains how our brain has two main functions, the limbic Action or flight system and the frontal decision cortex.

The elephant represents our more mundane brain, full of strong emotions. The second system is our frontal cortex, which is responsible for highly developed socially acceptable behavior. The good and bad news is that creatives tend to have very active elephants, which is an excellent fodder for exciting intrigues and romantic characters, but without working with our rider, our writing life can turn into a disastrous three-ring circus on a bad day.

Making decisions helps to train the elephant to work with you while creating your novel. The elephant tends to pick up a peanut-flavored cheesecake instead, so it takes time and effort to make good teamwork possible. Training your elephant when you need it is an essential element to overcome procrastination.

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