I get the feeling sometimes that I procrastinate way too much.
Not that I’m lazy, or take too long to do something, but rather, I avoid finishing something… starting something. I’m not sure if it’s because I’m afraid to fully commit myself to my goals and fall short, or if it’s more a matter of feeling that my inexperience will lead to subpar or personally disappointing results, and they’ll just have to be redone anyway (or burned and never spoken of again).
I woke up this morning and felt like I hadn’t really accomplished all that much this year. As the days go by and turn into weeks and then months, I forget about all of the things I have accomplished and only focus on the things I haven’t. This isn’t a new revelation; I’ve always been this way, to an extent. I try to always be moving, going forward, and never look backward. To look backward is to fret over what I might have been able to do differently, what I could still change to make it closer to what I really want.
But you know, it’s an illusion. That I’m going to get what I want. What I want is always changing, adapting, evolving. The moment I succeed at one thing, another replaces it. And perhaps in a day, or a week, or a month, that thing that I got, that thing I accomplished, is no longer good enough, if I look back and examine it. And so the process of self-growth and refinement continues, and that’s perfectly fine with me. I don’t want to be the same person I was last month, or last year… certainly not the same person I was a decade ago. I don’t want my “glory days” to be stories I recycle at every party; you know, that time I did this, and the time I did that. Glory should always be in future, moving, and not a stationary destination point.
So, back to procrastination.
Sometimes I feel like I’m procrastinating. However, when I really look at my determination in things, and my OCD tendencies once something is started, I have to think about it again. While it is true that I have a tendency to over-burden my plate so that I don’t give myself enough time to write (something I will rectify next year), I am pretty consistent in completing what I set out to do.
It stands to reason, then, that if I reevaluate my priorities, the energy I put into getting those things done will transfer. This year, I made it my goal to get a platform started. It’s been pretty hard to do so with basically nothing on the market, but as of today, I have 695 email followers, and 100 WordPress followers (thank you all, truly) on this blog. I’ve also found out which social networks I’ll stick with, and which ones I’ll only carry on with casually. For now, I’m a huge fan of Pinterest, DeviantArt, and Goodreads. Platforms I still want to crack open the hood on are G+ (now that Google has given me Authorship and is fully integrated with Youtube), Tumblr and Wattpad. I’ll only be casually interested in Twitter and Facebook, as it seems the networks are simply over-populated.
In addition to my platform building on all the different social media sites, I worked on developing a brand. I think I’ve accomplished that, in addition to building myself some “street cred” among some author circles.
So, really, I did accomplish what I set out to do this year in regards to writing. I’ve found my niche. Now I just need to get writing. So, next year, no more fiddling with CSS, SEO, connected accounts and content experimentation. I’ll probably settle into a consistent blogging schedule next year (since it seems I will finally be given two days off a week from my full-time job, instead of only the Sunday I enjoy now) and make the focus of 2014 to build up my works.
I want to be a novelist. That is my dream. But, I’m not ready to be a novelist yet. Every piece of long-form writing I’ve done this year has been cringe-worthy within a month or so. My skills are developing quickly, but aren’t consistent enough yet. So for 2014, I’ll set a goal for solidifying my voice through short story writing and serialized work (either on Wattpad or Amazon), and building up my stamina and technique for novel writing.
I’ve got my foundations. Time to build the house. No procrastinating now, Alex.
- A Guide To Procrastinators (lifehack.org)
- Thoughts on Procrastination (taftinatub.wordpress.com)
- Why can’t I finish what I start? Post of a Procrastinator (writergirlkp.wordpress.com)