Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Time Management Tuesday: Using Productive Procrastination During Stressful Times

We have had norovirus in our extended family since early last Wednesday morning. It's been making it's way around someone's home, and we thought it had arrived here Sunday night, since we'd been exposed 48 hours earlier. I spent the weekend calling and texting with sick loved ones, and shopping and prepping food in case we got sick here. Then there was a death in our family Monday morning. Not a close family member, but it meant some time on the phone and e-mailing today.

How I Live Now
The last two days have been workdays and, when I wasn't obsessively cleaning door knobs and counters, I spent a lot of my time huddled down in a spare bedroom in case my husband, who has been kind of sick, but, so far, not as sick as the rest of the family, turned into a norozombie out in the living room. I didn't have any deadlines, I didn't have a boss, I didn't have a time card to punch. I didn't have anything to make me work instead of dwelling on what was going on elsewhere.

And, yet, I couldn't let myself curl up with my iPad watching Netflix. I had enough work guilt to keep me from that. Plus I was saving the iPad and Netflix in case I got sick.

Write Every Day?...Not When You Can Procrastinate Productively

You may recall that last week I discussed the unrealistic and exclusionary insistence that writers write every day. I listed some work-every-day possibilities for writers that weren't writing. This week I've been reminded, as well, of productive procrastination. Productive procrastination is working on tasks that may not be the task you should be working on but will produce something for you.

So for the last two days instead of writing fiction, I've been working on
  • blog posts
  • transferring notes for a blueprint/outline to a computer file
  • researching a new market for a submission
  • working on a submission (which I haven't completed because the publication requires so much you'd think I was applying for some kind of government grant)
  • renewing my SCBWI membership 
These are all things I would have done at some point, and, really, needed to do. Especially taking care of that SCBWI membership. Productive procrastination can really work for you during distracted, low-energy periods.

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