Thursday, November 20, 2014

Resistance comes in alluring packaging

I once coached a writer whose biggest challenge was creative procrastination. 

She was a master of artfully creating constant distractions instead of working. 

During our brain rental session, she showed me the list of her peer review team for her upcoming book. It was massive. At least twenty different editors intended to comment on her manuscript. Which seemed a bit excessive, considering for the scope of the book. 

So I probed deeper. And the irony was, she wasn’t even planning to listen to their feedback. She actually completely trusted her own voice as a writer. In fact, without her peer review team, she told me, her readers wouldn’t have noticed the difference anyway. 

However, by sending the manuscript out for three months of editing gave her another reason to procrastinate. 

Isn’t it astonishing the calories we are willing to burn in order to avoid the real work? 

We seem to spend half our time planning for things we could create if we didn’t spend half our time planning. And it’s not just planning, it everything on the day’s long list of distractions. 

It breaks my heart. 

I’m reminded of an interview I read with a startup founder, who said that releasing people from their dependency on email will free up the time and mental space needed to move the species forward. 

Amen to that. 

Every time I hear someone talking about getting their inbox to zero, I just want to scream at them and say, all the time you spent answering email, you could have been doing the one thing people really love about you. 

What excuses do you make to justify your procrastination?

* * * *

Scott Ginsberg
That Guy with the Nametag
Author. Speaker. Strategist. Filmmaker. Publisher. Songwriter.

Never the same speech twice. Customized for your audience. Impossible to walk away uninspired.

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