I’ve long been a fan of Zen Habits, and this month Leo Babauta has issued a challenge – to pick an important task and ‘un-procrastinate’ for five minutes a day. Yup, just five minutes – the catch being that you must stay focused for those five minutes, not pause to check facebook or your phone, or switch to another task.
I’ve made my start today with a dull but essential insurance task. And did I want to pause halfway through? Oh yes – I could just go run the water for the dishes now that I’ve looked up this bit, or make a cuppa before just finishing this part… but no. I stayed sitting, and for the 20 minutes the whole thing ended up taking just Got It Done!!
I suspect the first benefit to this comes from choosing your task well – committing to focusing on the dishes is hardly going to be life changing! On the other hand, attention spans are dropping in general, and mine certainly hasn’t been great of late. Perhaps this will help me re-find my concentration, and in a way that ends up decreasing rather than adding to my stress, as I get some of those essential or just really want-to-do tasks done!
Zen Habits had a great article looking at the issues behind this challenge, or if you’re looking for more hints on beat procrastination, try Lifehacker‘s 29 suggestions (and credit to them for the pic above).