Tomorrow, I will no longer procrastinate
MAKE AN APPOINTMENT WITH YOURSELF!
Ready to achieve your dreams?
With Start drawing, you have prepared your studio and workstation to optimise your creativity and productivity. Tools are waiting for you: pencils, pens, cards, post-its of all colours and of course the indispensable valuable electronic tools. You are motivated to take up challenges. This time is the best.
Let's go... you can see it in parks and at sports centres; one feels the motivation: running, fast walking, sports program, yoga... tutti quanti It is decided! We will realise what we have always dreamed of: write a book, paint a canvas, start a business, a humanitarian project, create a game or a garden, write a PhD thesis... And for some of us, the day will take over, new priorities will appear, and we will focus on other things... the year will end, and we will have the impression of having done many things without accomplishing what really matters to us
Getting things done!
What objectives should we set? Consultant Zig Ziglar, the champion of goals, says that, according to the latest studies in the United States, only 3 percent of the population set specific goals. But those who do, without exception, are more successful. It is therefore very surprising that the percentage is so low, considering that many would have years studying in universities and business schools. The expert recommends a simple effective method:
Write 25 dreams;
For each, name the reasons why the dream is important to you (life or death). The dreams that you really want are the only one that you can turn into goals;
Choose those that really support your priority (short, medium, long-term);
Think of at least one goal in six specific areas of your life: physical (health and welfare), family, professional, intellectual and spiritual. For each of your six goals, follow these seven steps:
Clearly, state the objective.
What benefits will I gain by realising it?
What obstacles will I face doing so?
What skills or talents do I need to achieve it?
Which individuals, groups or communities can help me to succeed?
Develop an action plan to achieve this goal.
Write down your deadline.
This is Zig Ziglar's method. I would add an element of Vic Johnson's method that defines a SMART goal: S (specific), M(measurable), A(attainable), R(realistic) and T(time of realization—deadline).
If you have done this exercise, bravo. You are on the right track.
Do not break the chain!
Are you good at disciplining yourself? Are you a pro? Do you have the will to work to accomplish your dream? It is the same starting effort required than to quit smoking, just start... we are creatures of habit, if we repeat the action enough times, we will one day forget that was hard to get started.
According to Steven Pressfield, author of Gates of Fire, Tides of War, The Warrior Ethos and Turning Pro, we are programmed to procrastinate! In The War of Art, he explains that this little voice that distances us from our primary purpose is a strength that we all face, this fight is the first step to succeeding in creating something worthwhile. This voltage is positive. All authors and designers know it, the most difficult part is not to start writing or drawing, but to give our project the required number of hours each day. The famous American comedian Jerry Seinfeld, who generates a revenue of 30 million dollars per year, imposes constraints to maintain high pressure and stimulate creativity.
As soon as he finishes up the last scene of a movie, Woody Allen begins writing the next one. He never takes a break between two projects. Apparently, in Show your Work, written by Austin Kleon, Hemingway, at the end of the day, stopped writing in the middle of a sentence to know where to continue the following day.
We all have at least one talent. If we do not create what we really want, if we do not take the first step or if we spend too much time watching TV... days, months, years will past.... and we will lose enormous potential. Once lost, this life energy does not return. Life is a perpetual struggle between 'to do' and 'not to do '. Don't spend all your time doing what others ask you to do; instead, organise your life to also do what you feel deep within you is important. What things do you really want to accomplish before you die? One of the first dangers is procrastination, the time spent mulling in our head what our work or project will look like. I will do this and that... It turns out that as long as we do not do it, our ideas are worth nothing. What will never know? Saying we'll write a book has no value as long as we have not finished writing it. That's when inspiration confronts reality when things take shape, and we see what can really emerge from us. "Genius," wrote Steven Pressfield, "is a Latin word; Romans used to describe the inviolable inner spirit, the spirit that watches over us, guides us to our vocation. A writer writes with his inner genius; an artist paints with him; all creative works come from this sacred centre. It is the ship of our being(...) our star."
Depending on our beliefs, we can call on this inner strength in a thousand ways, but what is common to us all are those moments of inspiration when we feel we are guided. Recently the famous British writer Ian McEwan wrote in The Guardian that, when he moved to Norwich, in 1970, in a small apartment the time he pursued his MA in literature. He had always wanted to write. Late, one day, when he was 22 years old, as he sat at the foot of his bed, set up a folding table and decided he would not rise until he had finished writing a short story. "In one hour, a strange voice spoke to me from the page. I let her talk. I worked all night, filled with a romantic sense of myself, letting the writer heroically lead a compelling idea, working until dawn while the city was asleep. I ended up around 6 am."
For his first short story, Conversation with a Cupboard Man, McEwan did not expect that at all. Many writers and designers can tell you this kind of story. This is the point that connects us all... this inner centre mentioned by Steven Pressfield, from which emerges movements, words, colours... There is, in each of us, a creation waiting to emerge. We are the only one who can realise it. Do not waste this energy that will make you happier! No matter what you think, what your contribution to the world will be.
Being a pro of creative work means decision, discipline and perseverance. You will see the reward soon. There are different surprises that await each of us on this path. Come on, now is the perfect time to make an appointment with yourself and start the creative process to achieve your dream.
Getting started and keeping the habit are two of the hardest parts. Then, simply follow the advice of Jerry Seinfeld, and do not break the chain.
You can download our interactive tool to help you to get started to establish which dreams can become attainable goals.
1. Adam Morgan, Mark Barden, A beautiful constraint
2. Henry Todd, Die Empty: Unleash Your Best Work Every Day
3. Austin Kleon, Show your work
4. Steven Pressfield, The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks and Win Your Inner Creative Battles
5. Ian McEwan, When I was a Monster, The Guardian, August 28, 2015
6. Setting Goals, Zig Ziglar Foundation
7. Smart Goals with Vic Johnson