Procrastination has many disguises. In my freelancing world, it is very easy to be complacent. Working from home, I often fell into the trap of false accomplishments. Crafting an assignment takes a lot of mental energy. A couple of times in my workday, I’d take five minutes to unwind. Looking around my house, I would see the dirty dishes or the pile of dirty clothes. Sure enough, the plates are shining and the laundry is complete. Lo and behold, five minutes turned into 3 hours and my writing assignment is still in limbo. I had an aura of accomplishment, however, it wasn’t toward the intended target. No bueno!
After experiencing one too days in this situation. I decided to do something about it. I’ve been following these three rules of thumb in my hustling journey, and they worked for me. Hopefully, they will for you too:
1. Write It Down
You hear it in every self-help/motivational program, but it SO TRUE! You have to write down your goals! It’s imperative. For me, it’s the first step in “seeing” as in “seeing it, then being it.” Make your own strategy. It can be a weekly, monthly timeframe. It can be daily, or even hourly if you’re THAT busy. It can be short-term, long-term or both. However you want to track your assignment, you should have your targeted plan in sight.
I have my daily list that I write down after my workday is officially done. The list goes as long as there are things to do for the next day. Afterward, I place that list in a place where I KNOW I’ll see it; on top of my laptop; my bathroom mirror, etc. There’s nothing worse than having a list and forgetting where you put it. It puts a damper on the day before it even starts. Which brings me to my next step…
2. Set The Tone
I’m a true believer of having a good routine. When I wake up, I brush my teeth then get in my workout clothes. I’m either outside running or going head-first into a Beachbody workout. When I’m done, I’m in the zone before I even start my day. It wasn’t always easy to establish that routine. My procrastination would set in as I labored in my mind whether to run or do Insanity30, or maybe P90X, or 21-Day Fix. Before I knew it, it was 8 or 9 a.m., and it was time to get to work. Throughout those days, I’m running to stand still. No bueno!
Nonetheless, your routine is yours. I workout. Maybe you have your coffee, and you’re good to go. Whatever gets you there is the important takeaway. A good start leads to a good finish!
3. Plan Your Distractions
Yes, it’s sounds confusing. Let me explain: For most, there are eight hours in the workday. And let’s be honest, there’s a “windup” time when you get to work, the half-hour/hour for lunch, and a “wind-down” time before you leave the office. For me and the others I have worked with over my career, that’s the usual game plan. If you are a “get to work” right at the starting bell until the final whistle: God Bless You! For the rest of us, let’s continue.
If you can establish that aforementioned timeframe, then you’re winning. First, you know the root of your weakness, and knowing is half the battle. Second, you can choose to eliminate that distraction altogether (which would be nice), or make plans for it! Yes, you know it’s coming, so welcome it. You welcome that lunch hour, and you respect it. You’re back in your desk within that time. Why don’t you do that for the windup and wind-down time? Give yourself 3-5 minutes of “hey, how was your weekend/day?” moments around the water cooler or wherever you congregate. They tend to add up during the day.
Working by myself, my planned distraction is a call to my wife or friend before or after lunch. For me, it’s a great way to decompress during the workday and places things in proper perspective. Thankfully, I have enough to keep me occupied during the day. If I’m too busy, a text usually does the trick.
These processes have been years in the making for me, and they work like a charm. How do you curb your procrastination? I would love to learn more on how to squash it once and for all. Tweet @ me: @MichaelVFreeze or visit my IG: @mikefreeze
Thanks for listening,
If it weren’t for work
the new child, the visit from family
I would be here
If it weren’t for fear of the truth
the effect it will have
I would be here
If it weren’t for that time
when I failed
miss my chance
I would be here
But here I am
It’s only because of a career change that I’m posting. I now have some free time.
I did it again. Procrastinating.
It’s been more than a year for new post. So much had changed since then. I have a son. He’s three months old. He’s getting big just like me.
Right now, I’m laying on my couch holding my son and laughing at YouTube videos with my wife while watching the Cavs play the Nets.
There’s no place I’d rather be.
I’ll post more. I promise.
You’ve been gone for a long while. Like almost… two years, dude! So much has happened since LeBron came back (your last post). So what have you been doing? You get a job yet? I mean… a real job?
I know. You were doing your thing. Just joking. Is working from home all that it’s up to be? I bet it is.
Did you know we got new neighbors? Yeah, a young couple. They are home all the time. They turned that home around. New roof, windows, they even build a wood fence around the back. It looks amazing.
Also, I got me a new gig. Well… it’s not really new. I’ve been at it for a while and I really like it. It’s challenging and fun, and there is never a dull day. That’s good for a change.
So… you haven’t told me yet. Where were you?
We haven’t seen you in so long, we felt like you dropped off the face of the earth. Thank goodness you’re doing well. You look good too. Have you been working out? I’ve been doing some P90X3. It’s helping with only a month into it. My friends hate Tony Horton, but he kicks ass! Fuck what they say. He got me in the best shape of my life. With the 20 extra pounds I gained this year, I’ll need his help again.
You’re here now and the bummer is that I’m traveling again. I have to go across the Northeast for my job. I like traveling but not as much as I used to. I miss being home more frequently than usual. However, I love talking to people. Hell… I love talking.
I got to get going. It was nice seeing you again. And don’t be a stranger. Post more. Explore. Get after it!
But before I go… where were you?
Things are crazy right now. I have new opportunities to help me flourish and someone is coming back to Cleveland. There’s a lot of excitement in my home area of Northeastern Oho. It’s said that the most stressful moments come in a new career or situation such as new home or status like marriage or divorce.
The marriage of LeBron James and the city of Cleveland ended in a messy divorce known as “The Decision“. The separation united the city with a hatred hotter than 10,000 burning suns. Literally. But as with love, separation makes the heart grow fonder. More than four years later, James returns to a forgiving fan base and turns the alley of West 4th Street into Times Square (well… that might have been the ESPN booth).
There’s a lot of promise for the city that’s been lost for last several years. Cleveland’s relevant again and there’s hope. The sports nation looks toward the city to witness the beginning of something special or sports tragedy.
The people have been set up to endure failure for so long. The Browns beat the Steelers one week only to lose to the worst teams in the NFL. The Indians make a playoff run only to lose steam down the stretch.
It’s about time they get a chance to enjoy, at this moment, a chance. A real chance to compete for a championship is upon the fans. A chance to be a part of something special.
So here’s to the new season of hope. Here’s to a new beginning of a championship run for the city of Cleveland. Let the party begin in the streets. But not too late. I have to work in the morning.
(BYES: ATLANTA, BUFFALO, CHICAGO, DETROIT, GREEN BAY, TENNESSEE)
Last Week: 7-7
My winning streak had to end sometime…
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 30
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS AT CAROLINA PANTHERS — 8:25 p.m.
SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 2
JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS AT CINCINNATI BENGALS — 1:00 p.m.
TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS AT CLEVELAND BROWNS — 1:00p p.m.
ARIZONA CARDINALS AT DALLAS COWBOYS — 1:00 p.m.
PHILADELPHIA EAGLES AT HOUSTON TEXANS — 1:00 p.m.
N.Y. JETS AT KANSAS CITY CHIEFS — 1:00 p.m.
SAN DIEGO CHARGERS AT MIAMI DOLPHINS — 1:00 p.m.
WASHINGTON REDSKINS AT MINNESOTA VIKINGS — 1:00 p.m
ST. LOUIS RAMS AT SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS — 4:05 p.m.
DENVER BRONCOS AT NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS — 4:25 p.m.
OAKLAND RAIDERS AT SEATTLE SEAHAWKS — 4:25 p.m.
BALTIMORE RAVENS AT PITTSBURGH STEELERS * — 8:30 p.m.
MONDAY, NOVEMBER 3
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS AT N.Y. GIANTS — 8:30 p.m.
There’s a passage that hangs on my office wall I read everyday after working. It allows me to take stock in the thoughts and accomplishments throughout the day.
Oftentimes you feel the need to sit down and take stock of the things in your life that you need to do better, that you need to improve, that you need to address, and this is not a bad thing.
But, when was the last time that you sat down as earnestly and as enthusiastically and took stock of all the things that you have done RIGHT?
The time you took to help others, the people you supported merely because it was the right thing to do, the right choices you made when no one was watching
There is always room for improvement in areas of your life, but there is nothing magical or superior about only focusing on the negatives, even if it is with an eye toward making them better.
Balance dictates that you look at the totality of your situation, and that includes giving credit where credit is due.
Today, take a moment to examine your life from the vantage point of what you have done right, and embrace the unique and beautiful wonder of YOU!
There are so many things that linger in my mind when decompressing from my work day. An idea pops in my head and teases me to get back on my laptop and turn it into action. I often found myself in that situation when I first started freelancing full time. I thought having this kind of routine would be beneficial of having a career that I could make my own hours and choose my own direction. Sure enough I was right, but it did come at a cost. I found success but soon learned that I sacrificed the free time I wanted to have in the first place. It was just work, work, work. What good is freedom when you’re always locked inside your Word document?
That was the time I stumbled upon that passage. I discovered that my desire for balance was lacking. It was insufficient because I didn’t have the balance of praise and criticism. There was always something to improve on or add to in my assignments. There was always one more person to call. One thought after another. And with my own fluid schedule, I thought I could knock out all of these notions and run my freelancing business smoothly. I was sadly mistaken. The one thing that I despised when working for “the man” turned out to be what I became. I was that boss that wanted more from the employee who was me.
Reading these sentences made me realize the need to have a stop and start button to my daily career hustle or else it would burn me out. Fortunately, it has made a better writer and time manager. Once I started looking at what I accomplished and not dwelling on what I could have done better or missed out on, the opportunities appeared more. I was less stressed and not so overwhelmed when on assignment. The game came to me instead of me forcing things.
Now, my career has taken a great turn and I owe all to my change in thinking. I was always about my process as a writer and editor, but my mindset has really over the top. I’m thankful for that. I don’t know who the author of these words were but they’ve very helpful in my life. So, here’s hoping they’ll make good use for you.
Is there any passage you read daily gets you going? Comment below.
(BYES: N.Y. GIANTS, SAN FRANCISCO)
Last Week: 11-3
Momentum is building…
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 23
SAN DIEGO CHARGERS AT DENVER BRONCOS — 8:25 p.m.
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 26
DETROIT LIONS AT ATLANTA FALCONS (LONDON) — 9:30 a.m.
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS AT CAROLINA PANTHERS — 1:00 p.m.
BALTIMORE RAVENS AT CINCINNATI BENGALS — 1:00 p.m.
MIAMI DOLPHINS AT JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS — 1:00 p.m.
ST. LOUIS RAMS AT KANSAS CITY CHIEFS — 1:00 p.m.
CHICAGO BEARS AT NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS — 1:00 p.m.
BUFFALO BILLS AT N.Y. JETS — 1:00 p.m.
MINNESOTA VIKINGS AT TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS — 1:00 p.m.
HOUSTON TEXANS AT TENNESSEE TITANS — 1:00 p.m.
PHILADELPHIA EAGLES AT ARIZONA CARDINALS — 4:05 p.m.
OAKLAND RAIDERS AT CLEVELAND BROWNS — 4:25 p.m.
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS AT PITTSBURGH STEELERS — 4:25 p.m.
GREEN BAY PACKERS AT NEW ORLEANS SAINTS * — 8:30 p.m.
MONDAY, OCTOBER 27
WASHINGTON REDSKINS AT DALLAS COWBOYS — 8:30 p.m.
It’s almost Halloween. And in today’s world, that means one thing. It’s Christmas season. Since most people I know (by people, I mean Twitter followers and bloggers) are itching to bring out the holiday joy, they’ve inspired me to start planning my gift shopping. It’s never too late, right? In this case, my gift receivers are not too tech-savvy or choosy. One particular person has hinted toward something to read on or something to tell him/her where to go. So in true holiday-before-we-are-even-ready spirit, I present to you some out-loud thoughts of a Christmas pre-shopper.
The benefit: As our surroundings change, some things stay the same. Curling up to enjoy a good book has never gone out of style. Only the method has changed. The nifty e-reader replaces the vacation book bag along with the hassle of carrying several books around. With more public venues offering wi-fi and the access to networks, e-readers are able to store thousands of books, newspapers and magazines for your reading pleasure.
• Amazon Kindle Paperwhite
The biggest complaint for e-readers is the glare from sunlight that makes reading the screen challenging. The Paperwhite fixes that with a bright, white screen to keep the words in focus. It’s considered by experts as the best overall e-reader in the market. Older versions are available at an affordable price.
• Barnes & Noble Nook GlowLight
The lightweight competitor to the Paperwhite, the GlowLight also provides plenty of light for reading as well as an rubber edge in case of any clumsy mishaps. It also holds up to 4 GBs of internal memory and eliminates page flashing (what happens to the screen when it refreshes: Think sudden bright light).
• Kobo Glo
A lightweight alternative to the main brands of Barnes & Noble and Amazon, the Kobo Glo has a touch screen interface, an expansion slot for additional memory and compatibility with EPub files. With the Adobe DRM format available, users are able to read most e-book store-supported formats.
The benefit: It’s not your father’s road map located in the glove box. The GPS on your car’s dashboard might just be your best friend when you’re lost. Although the technology allows GPS to operate on your smartphone, these standalone devices provide audible driving directions as well as a large easy-to-read screen.
• Garmin Nuvi 3597LMTHD
Considered one of the best in market, the Nuvi comes in a thin metal frame with a five-inch screen. The voice command makes it easy to use and keeps your hands rightfully on the wheel. Even the directions speak in a real-world, conversational tone like “In a quarter-mile, turn left. Keep straight past the hotel and turn left at the light.”
• Magellan SmartGPS
This beefed-up GPS is in tune with all the latest networking such as wifi and Bluetooth connection. Applications like Yelp and Foursquare work hand-in-hand to provide downloaded, real-time traffic reports with fuel price data. If you have an iPhone, the SmartGPS app works for seamless integration.
• TomTom GO Live 1535M
Labeled under “keep-it-simple,” The TomTom GO Live 1535M blends together web applications like Trip Advisor and Google to provide pinpoint destination searches. In addition to its voice command and HD Traffic service, the Twitter app allows drivers to tweet the ETA without texting.
Those are just my initial thoughts, but who knows. Things could change before Thanksgiving.
Last Week: 12-2
DAMN, I’M GOOD. LET’S KEEP IT GOING!
PICKS ARE IN BOLD
(BYES: PHILADELPHIA, TAMPA BAY)
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 16
N.Y. JETS AT NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS — 8:25 p.m.
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 19
ATLANTA FALCONS AT BALTIMORE RAVENS — 1:00 p.m.
MINNESOTA VIKINGS AT BUFFALO BILLS — 1:00 p.m.
MIAMI DOLPHINS AT CHICAGO BEARS — 1:00 p.m.
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS AT DETROIT LIONS — 1:00 p.m.
CAROLINA PANTHERS AT GREEN BAY PACKERS — 1:00 p.m.
CINCINNATI BENGALS AT INDIANAPOLIS COLTS — 1:00 p.m.
CLEVELAND BROWNS AT JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS — 1:00 p.m.
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS AT ST. LOUIS RAMS — 1:00 p.m.
TENNESSEE TITANS AT WASHINGTON REDSKINS — 1:00 p.m.
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS AT SAN DIEGO CHARGERS — 4:05 p.m.
N.Y. GIANTS AT DALLAS COWBOYS — 4:25 p.m.
ARIZONA CARDINALS AT OAKLAND RAIDERS — 4:25 p.m.
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS AT DENVER BRONCOS * — 8:30 p.m.
MONDAY, OCTOBER 20
HOUSTON TEXANS AT PITTSBURGH STEELERS — 8:30 p.m.