The importance of stopping

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stop signSometimes you get one of those lightbulb moments…

It’s finally dawned on me that one of the main reasons I have problems getting started is that I have no clear sense of stop. I have so much to do – work, degree, diploma, hobbies, domesticity, life – that it’s all too easy to see life as one unending to-do list – even when half the list is meant to be fun!

More, I really WANT to do all this stuff. I crave being brilliant at something again, and would love to just absorb so much knowledge and skill that I can shine with it. So surely the more I can pack into my day the better?! It seems my mindset has always been one of the more I can do now, the more I can get ahead, the sooner I can get finished. Except, it really doesn’t work – particularly when I struggle so hard to start in the first place! Then I get stressed, and I pack it all in, and oh look – time to fall over.

So how about this: set up my schedule (now -> exam/assignment deadline/weekend!) and just work at sticking to it.  Deciding I’m doing one chapter’s revision and one sub-question on the assignment and then putting it all down and doing what I like is – surprise surprise! – a damn sight more motivating. Strange that, eh?

For this week, then, the goal is to do what I have written down as this week’s workload, and be satisfied that it’s enough. Sure, there’s more to be done, but that is the point of making timetables – which I think I’ve always missed!

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5 responses »

  1. Absolutely, just make a plan (maybe try to work a couple of extra days’ grace in the plan so you don’t feel too pressured?) and then do your quota and move on to something else.

    Also you said that half the list is supposed to be fun – is there any way you can see more of the rest as “fun”? I mean, I know studying is a chore but could you set yourself a couple of study-dates a week and take yourself out for coffee? Just to make it something to look forward to…

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    • I’ve got a decent schedule, with plenty breaks – no way I could work flat out for a full 2 months! o_O

      I’ve tried the studying in coffee shops before, and it was rather less productive than I’d hoped. Not least ‘cos I have to lug a fair bit of equipment with me, really!

      That said, I’m actually trying to make work more like that: I should be able to choose between my two employers’ locations, at least sometimes, but the idea of me doing research in – god forbid! – a university library was met with a ‘meh’ today. Think I’ll do it anyway! 😛

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