I’ve struggled a lot with issues of time management and procrastination, and what I’m trying to teach myself is this:
choose what you’re going to do, make a deliberate, conscious choice, and then do it wholeheartedly.
If I don’t make a conscious decision, if I just keep getting swept away by waves of inertia, then if what I’m doing is fun, the fun is spoilt by the niggling feeling that I should be doing something else. If there’s a voice in my head that says I should be getting on with that bit of work my client is waiting for, or working on that essay that I have to hand in on Friday, or doing the laundry, or whatever – if there’s a voice in my head saying I should be doing other stuff, useful stuff, important stuff, rather than playing, I can’t shush that voice very easily, unless I had made a conscious decision which I am happy with.
If I stop and think before I pick up the sudoku or the magazine, or go onto the games website, or ring a friend for a chat, or whatever – if I stop and think and say to myself: “yes, I have work to do but right now I need a break, and I’m going to take a break for half an hour/a day/five minutes and do such-and-such”, then I can go into that break time wholeheartedly and enjoy it.
And that will make me more productive in my work time – because we all need the odd break, we need to rest and play and recharge, and if you work or study at home then it’s up to you to make it happen, because there isn’t a boss standing over your head and telling you when your working hours are and when your lunch break is. Being your own boss means you’re the one who decides – so do it. Decide.