Fear-based procrastination

Half of what I read about procrastination, focus, and productivity seems to ignore what for me has always been the prime driver of procrastination: fear. The unfearing view of procrastination focuses on perfectly reasonable advice, some of which I also give, which helps alleviate some symptoms. But the best way to beat fear-based procrastination is […]

How to properly end things

There is a line in Atomic Habits that I really like: “I’m just proactively lazy. It gives you so much time back”. It refers to resetting a room after every use so that it’s ready the next time you want to use it. I like to apply it to my work computer, and I am […]

Embrace the suck, writers’ edition

In a post titled Find It in the Edit, I mentioned that your first draft is going to suck, and that seven drafts into the writing process is halfway there. I was making a point about the importance of editing. But I should have made another point: “The suck is normal. It’s almost requisite. Embrace […]

The shower isn’t necessary

You know that moment in the shower when you suddenly get an excellent idea? That happens when your brain, working away quietly while you’re talking to yourself about what could possibly have compelled you to buy shower gel that smells like a food item, suddenly connects two dots. We say that things just clicked, or […]

Attention management for writers, part 4: Research notes

Research notes. A bombastic name for what is usually a bunch of half formed thoughts and snatches of typos. But you know what I mean. Why am I talking about research notes? Because, at least for me, messy notes – especially if they’re physically scattered among multiple sources (notebook, bits of paper, several different files) […]

Attention management for writers, part 3: The obligatory Slack and email post, or: guilt management for writers

Until now, we’ve focused on calming the chaos of our internal voice. Now it’s time we talked about that other attention killer: external voices. And, because I like to cheat, their influence on our internal voice. One thing you can do this week: Understand the difference between objective obligations and emotions. Nothing new here Honestly, […]