View Full Version : Procrastination stoping tool
07-26-2006, 11:23 AM
I am shocking at staying on task. For a while it was freecell that distracted me, so, with a lot of pain, I took it off my computer.
Now it is the net. AW distracts me more than it should, as does email, the Lonely Planet websites and the news. I got directed to this temptation stopper website today. Basically you click what you want to block for how long and if you try to get into those programs the temptation stopper stops you. Think I might have to download this as simply removing myself from a web source is not working – too many places I go have free wireless these days and my little lap top has a popup which almost reads “ha ha, look, back on line. Go on, check your email. Maybe someone else has posted on AW. Stop working, see what is happening on the net.”
I haven’t tried it yet. But perhaps I will. Here’s the link: http://www.webjillion.com/archives/2005/08/01/free-software-temptation-blocker
07-26-2006, 11:32 AM
I have this same problem! It starts out innocently though, like needing to check some sites and email for important updates or looking up information for my story and then bam! Three hours went by in the blink of an eye and I lost all train of thought about where I was going with the story. I once tried blocking some sites through ZoneAlarm and it worked for awhile until I became even more obsessed with needing to know what was going on with the net. I then took the next hour devoting myself to how to remove ZoneAlarm.
07-26-2006, 11:40 AM
I think this is something very common. I too often get distracted by the net. When I was still in High School, in the junior grades, my parents only let us on the net after 8pm.
I came back to writing because there was nothing to do before that time and found that I still loved it. If the story really has me, I can't get away from it, but a lot of the time, I've forgotten about it.
07-26-2006, 11:42 AM
Closing all of my other tabs and going to this (http://www.marktaw.com/getbacktowork.htm)website usually does the trick. It helps keep me on track for writing "sprints" small and large and helps me track my accomplishments. I keep it as my home page. :)
07-26-2006, 11:48 AM
Erin, I think just the title helps. Imagine; I'm typing away at my latest piece and I have this desire to check AW or something. I bring up the browser I've minimized and I get hit with big bold letters reading: GET BACK TO WORK!
That might help me ;)
07-26-2006, 02:32 PM
Try this: take a Post It and write "If I don't work I will never ever be published and lots of other people who work harder will."
Pretty good motivation if you ask me. Now get to it!
07-26-2006, 08:46 PM
"If I don't work I will never ever be published and lots of other people who work harder will."
Excellent point. And good advice. I've got a Post-it on the side of my screen that says: FOCUS!
And I have been known to pull the plug for a while, to disconnect the cable from the back of the computer so I can't see the Internet. It can be a compelling distraction.
07-27-2006, 12:37 AM
...simply removing myself from a web source is not working – too many places I go have free wireless these days and my little lap top has a popup which almost reads “ha ha, look, back on line. Go on, check your email. Maybe someone else has posted on AW. Stop working, see what is happening on the net.”
That's precisely why I made sure the laptop I bought a few months ago had no wi-fi capability. Besides keeping the price down, it removed temptation. I can still plug it into the phone line if I have to access the Internet from that machine for some reason, but it has no easy click-and-procrastinate functions, including games. It's done wonders for my productivity.
07-27-2006, 01:32 AM
yeah, I don't have wi-fi in my house and I get badly distracted by the internet so when I'm serious about writing, I take the internet cable out.
07-27-2006, 03:55 AM
I have been setting an hour or so away at night, turning the tv, internet, and phone off, and just writing. I try to get 1000 or more words out before I stop. I tend to write more when my kid is at home running around and asking me to cook...than when I am alone.
I get a few days to myself this week and noone asked me to visit, call, or anything. I was also told by a few beta readers to get my book done so they can know what becomes of my characters. They took a liking to one boy in the novel and most of the beta readers are obsessed or in love with him. Don't ask me why? I must have really written his part to their liking.
This is exactly why I go out of the house to write - usually a coffee shop. It reminds me that the reason I'm there is to write, not to browse the web, or load the dishwasher, or make a fuss of the cat.
07-27-2006, 05:42 AM
I've got an alarm in the living room set for when the kids are supposed to go to bed. I'll do quick good-byes to anyone that's on IM (no excuses, just cya or gtg and I'm signed off), shut down the computer, tuck the kids in and then when I get back on the computer I immediately put up my WIP until I reach my 300+ words.
Granted, there's been times that I've written "crap" 300 times just to reach that goal, but it's the thought that counts right? ;)
07-27-2006, 06:07 AM
Everything in the world distracts me during the day when I'm in the middle of a brain fart or slow writing phase. Most of the time it's poker. I'll say to myself, "I'm only going to play 3 hands". Next thing I know an hour has passed. I feel like crap for not stopping so I punish myself by playing more poker....LOL. Luckily, I'm one of those people they hop up in the middle of the night to write. So what I don't get done during the day, I make up for around 3, 4, or 5 am.
07-27-2006, 06:25 AM
I have two countdown timers on my computer. One is for daily use, and one marks a long term project.
My daily countdown timer just expired a few minutes ago, but the other one reads one month, six days, one hour, twelve minutes, and twenty seconds.
That's the deadline for the novel I'm currently working on. These two timers are always on top, and watching those numbers constantly shrink goes a long way toward stopping procrastination.
I like this idea. Is the countdown timer a program you had to load or is it standard on the computer? If standard how do I turn this on. (Sorry - I also didn't know about that handy document map until someone explained it on another thread).
The free wireless thing is one reason I prefer starbuck. Their connections are outright expensive - perfect! The free connections should be banned with junk food adds.
The GET BACK TO WORK website that erinbee directs you to by clicking her "here" looks good too. Will load it as my homepage and see if/how it helps.
Removing the games from my computer did work. I have set myself a deadline of finishing before school (my swimming job) goes back in September. I will try the count down timer and goal setting "get back to work" site.
Thanks for your ideas. I won't load the temptation blocker as I can see myself in that trap of spending another hour learning how to unblock it...
07-27-2006, 07:16 AM
Just do what I do, set aside some hour of the day or a couple of hours throughout the day and write.
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