Do you procrastinate? How do you get over it?

Oh yes! So very much!

Irony of ironies, I have used this post as part of my procrastination. Instead of doing the things I should have been doing, I began composing this post in my mind about 12 days ago. Now that this is the day this post is due, I’ve spent part of my morning creating some other thing that really isn’t needed until next year!!!

So committed to my procrastinating, I created this…

What I should have been doingWhat I did
Finishing the newsletter editingMake this table
Finishing the newsletter editingSort the laundry into colours
Finishing the newsletter editingPut on a load of red/orange/pink/purples
Finishing the newsletter editingSort the beverage area of my kitchen, including entirely rearranging how the station operates. I also considered recording myself doing this so as to create a TikTok post
Finishing the newsletter editingThink about writing the post on procrastination…14 days ahead of when it is due

I think I’m driven to meet deadlines and seem to be pathologically incapable of finishing work ahead of time. This was painfully evident when I moved house recently. We were still packing and cleaning the house right up to the moment of settlement. There was a horrible hurdle that day in that the removalists that we had booked were woefully incompetent and brought a truck that was essentially a ute with delusions of grandeur. This setback cost us hours of precious time and would have put us over the deadline for getting out of the house. Fortunately for us, the sellers also had delays and the buyers of our house were happy enough to allow for us to take a bit longer. Even with a 22 hour extension to the deadline we still found ourselves working right up to the last minute. I can’t help but think that this was because of the procrastination in the packing, etc in the weeks leading up to that day.

So, how to get over it? That’s the $64,000 question.

I usually employ a series of techniques that are manifestly inadequate. I say this because I try and try and try and fail at each point. Nevertheless, I don’t stop the trying and I keep searching for the technique that will one day work. Some methods have minor success so they might be best used in combination. If one method has 5% success of getting me motivated and another might have 10% then I figure I’m 15% better off than I was if I didn’t try anything at all.

I break down the task into components and give each component a deadline well ahead of the final deadline. This usually results in some of the work being completed and another opportunity to beat myself up for not being better at getting things done.

Another go-to technique is to find something else I can achieve in a short time. This may be unrelated to the job at hand but something I enjoy and can stay focussed on. Once I get that rush of satisfaction of a job well done (or just done) I use that adrenaline to impel me into action to complete other tasks. This is often why I will have my own handmade graphics to accompany my posts. I spend a couple of minutes (cough…or hours) making something to scratch the creative itch and then I’m set to go and finish the main task.

Ad break: If I like the graphic I’ve made and think others might like it, I’ll upload it to my Redbubble shop…which I have done with the graphic in this post as well as the one in my last blogpost.

So what’s the take-away message? I’m not sure. I’ll get back you…I’m just not sure when.

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Don’t hold me to it

Waaaayyyy back…a lifetime ago…I used to be someone who thought everyone judged me for every action, word or thought that ever came out of me. For literally decades and under the gaze of social media, I’ve been trying to change that compulsion.

One of the many downsides of this character trait is that I will often not do something for fear I’ll do it wrongly. I will often forego doing something which really interests me just because I might look foolish. Conversely, I do things (or continue doing things) which don’t interest me or things I cannot sustain because I don’t want to be judged as lacking in commitment.

This is where I find myself now. I have watched countless seasons of TV shows long after I’d lost interest. And why? Because I feel compelled to “complete the set”. I know how ridiculous that sounds.

Now let’s put this in the context of Blogjune. Don’t get me wrong…I LOVE Blogjune. I actually use this as a time for introspection and reflection. It’s a bit like Lent but with a slightly different focus. Instead of refocusing my faith and spirituality, I look at how I find fulfilment and what drives me. When I was still a working librarian, this took the form of how I practiced librarianship. Nowadays, it’s a much broader purview.

I started writing this post a few days ago and my intent was to essentially to forgive myself. I set a task of completing a blog post every single day of this month. I have done this every day of June since Blogjune began in 2010. There are times I struggle to get a post done and when I do it is often so pointless that it’s a waste of everyone’s time and my limited energy.

So setting up a hurdle for my own failure, I said I would have meme themed titles. I cannot. I let that silly concept stop me from posting on days I might have been able. Then followed a few days when I genuinely lacked the ability. I let this stop me from engaging in this “challenge” that I so enjoy.

So now I will just say this… I will write when I can. I will not lock myself in to unrealistic and arbitrary rules that literally nobody has set but me. I will be kind to myself.

Update: I started writing this on 7th June to make up for posts as I had not written anything since the 3rd. Today is now the 13th and I’m only just posting this. As it is, I’m struggling to even do this much today.

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TGI…Blogjune

I was hoist by my own petard today. I was in a good mood despite being in an all-consuming amount of pain. A toothache which could no longer be ignored turned into a tooth extraction on Monday. The pain of the extraction has barely eased a jot since then and required a further trip to the dentist this morning. The upshot is that I will have to endure yet another extraction in the next couple of weeks.

But I digress. How was I hoist?

Where was I? Oh yes, that good mood. Despite the faceache and having to deal with a child who dressed for school in such a way that had me sending her back to her room to re-dress, I was indeed quite chipper. I’ll often select music for a journey based on a theme. Today I decided to choose a bunch of “Friday” songs. The playlist included Friday on my Mind by The Easybeats, Friday I’m in Love by The Cure, and Last Friday Night by Katy Perry. I’m not so much a fan of that last one but it supported the theme.

Here’s where I went wrong. I chose a song that is frankly a crime against music. As with most dreadful songs, it became an earworm and I’ve not been able to shake this from my mind all day!

Rebecca Black’s Friday is nothing short of torture.

I even found myself *really* listening to the lyrics. I’m not sure I’ve ever heard anything more banal in my life and yet I couldn’t stop listening to it.

I’m sure my day held other more interesting things than listening to this God-awful tripe but I’m hard pressed to remember anything after this has infiltrated itself into the former functioning parts of my brain.

Let me leave you with these sanity-leeching lyrics:

Yesterday was Thursday, Thursday
Today is Friday, Friday (Partyin’)
We so excited
We so excited
We gonna have a ball today
Tomorrow is Saturday
And Sunday comes after wards
I don’t want this weekend to end

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Put a pin in Blogjune

Well, it’s only day two of Blogjune and already I’m stumbling. I thought it would be fun to have meme-themed post titles but I am too brain-weary to think of one…or at least I was until I’d all but finished writing the post. I knew on some level I was setting myself up for failure.

Today has been a busy day. I’m on the committee of my local historical society and I am the editor of their newsletter. The newsletter is due out tomorrow and my deadline for completion was yesterday. I did manage to complete it today but all in a mad panic and the dear hope that it was all correct and without errors or omissions.

This afternoon I attended a workshop with creative people. I’d like to say “other creative people” but that would imply that I am a creative person. People say that I am but I don’t really think of myself that way. I’d really like to break this open in a subsequent post so let’s just put a pin in this for now.

Tonight I read something online which has me somewhat deflated and questioning my contribution to society…or at least my tiny circle of society. Again, this is something I really want to explore but I lack the energy and concentration to dedicate to the topic. Another pin.

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My dog stepped on a Blogjune

There’s a chill in the air and my Twitter notifications are telling me that someone is calling my name. It can only mean one thing… It’s the first day of #BLOGJUNE!!!

Since this time last year my life has gone through a few major changes and I expect they will prove to be the subject of a few posts this Blogjune so I won’t steal my own thunder by divulging them all now. The title of this post…which is a ham-fisted reference to Amber Heard and her testimony at the Johnny Depp defamation trial…is my clumsy attempt at using minced memes as my theme for post titles this year. Meme-theme, as it were.

I have plenty to say but not much time to write today as I’m busy with some other tasks whose deadlines are already slightly past due. I’m the editor of the newsletter of our local historical society and I’m about 5 pages away from putting this issue to bed. So, naturally, I’m procrastinating by writing my first Blogjune post. More on that topic later this month, too.

Anyway, I think this is enough of a “hello, I’m still alive and contributing” post for me to sign off for now. I’ll just leave you with my attempt to jump on a bandwagon…

@fibiem

Getting on the #mydogsteppedonabee trend in time for the Australian Federal Election. #auspol #albo4pm

♬ original sound – Fiona Doyle
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On the 2nd day of Christmas

I rested.

I didn’t get home from the hospital with my seven-year-old until the wee small hours of the morning. Everybody needed a rest the next day.

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On the 1st day of Christmas

We cancelled Christmas dinner.

The entirety of Advent was an utter disaster for us. Sean was in hospital for a week and subsequently off work until 2022. I cancelled much of my therapy to cope with the change of circumstances at home. As a result, I’ve ended up straining my body and causing damage to my leg in particular.

We were starting to get it slightly back on track as we approached the week of Christmas. But life had other ideas. Sean was exhibiting symptoms that were quite concerning. It looked like an adverse reaction to medication so he went to the hospital as per protocol.

Fortunately, it was as bad as we’d first thought. It was bad enough, though. Gastro.

He got over that and Christmas Eve was upon us…with all the activities that go along with that. We went to Mass in the early evening and then home for last minute wrapping, cheesecake making and Santa duties.

It was in the midst of all that when we heard cries from Snugglepot’s room. Night terrors are not uncommon so we thought it was that. We followed our usual process with that each time and each time she went back to sleep.

Then she appeared in the lounge room just before midnight and was sick. The wee small hours of Christmas Day were punctuated with her being sick. Poor thing. It didn’t stop until just after dawn.

Suffice to say that Christmas dinner has been postponed.

Christmas Day was a day of opening gifts and just spending time as a family. No big feast. Just a gentle day.

I write this now from the waiting room of the local hospital. Bedtime tonight brought more pain. So here we are.

Happy Christmas?

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The Blogjune is over

Another Blogjune draws to a close. It’s time to do that one final post and reflect on the month.

I’ve had a fun time even though it was hard to keep on task every single day. I really enjoyed doing the QandA and I think that was the thing that made it easier to write. I particularly liked to be challenged to think about things, no matter how small.

The song challenge was a bit different in that the prolific answerer was also challenging me to work out the cryptic names he responded with. I didn’t always get it but it was fun to see the connections.

Thank you all for sticking with me for another Blogjune and I’ll see you all again in June next year! I’ll try to blog again between now and then but I make no promises.

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Let your blog flow

This is the last question I got through my call out for QandA. This leads us nicely to the last day of #blogjune tomorrow.


Q: What was your favourite part about today? (Sarah on Twitter)

Photo from 2017

A: Well, it was an odd day because the Queensland Premier just announced a 3-day lockdown. I’m a bit disappointed because I was to attend an ordination this evening. It’s such a beautiful thing to be a part of. I’ve been lucky enough to attend a few ordinations to the priesthood over the years (as well as diaconate ordinations and other milestones for seminarians). This one was rescheduled to a time that made it impossible for me to attend.

So that’s what DIDN’T happen but what would probably have been my favourite part of my day. But what ACTUALLY was? Probably sitting down to a nice dinner prepared by my husband. We were child-free tonight because we’d been planning to be at the ordination and Snugglepot was spending the night with her godparents. So, yeah, I’d say a nice meal and a companionable evening with the love of my life.

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Send in the blogs

Getting down to the last few Q and A questions now and I’m getting a bit worn out so this is a short (backdated) one today.


Q: When was the last time you laughed simply for the joy of being alive? (Trish on Twitter)

A: I laugh often. I think I actually laugh most days. I laugh when I shouldn’t and when there’s often no reason to. I think that would count as “for the joy of being alive”. Why not!

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