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How to do work you hate to do and beat procrastination

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I didn’t like to write peer reviews. My manager set a deadline for us to provide peer reviews.

I procrastinated until the last minute. In fact, I missed the end of Friday deadline. So I had to work on the weekend to finish the feedback.

I was stressed out. I know I had to do it. It reflected poorly on me if I didn’t send him anything.

I decided to re-frame this task in my mind.

Do I have to do it? Yes. So, I stopped thinking about not doing it. It’s a huge waste of my mental cycle to think about not doing it.

My goal was to get this done in the shortest amount of time possible while giving me an advantage. After all, I valued time as my most valuable resource. Having control of my time was a top priority for me.

I wanted to use it to my advantage. There were three goals here:

  1. Providing enough feedback to meet or exceed the manager’s expectation.
  2. Write some content that provide meaningful feedback to my peers.
  3. The feedback should help improve my own positioning against my peers.

I started putting some words down on paper. I made some coffee to drink. I wrote more. I took another break to get some ice cream. I wrote again and finished all 3 peer feedback.

Did I take too many breaks? Yes I did. But it helped me get it done. Next time, I’ll try to take fewer breaks.

But, the key here is that I started writing things down. I wasn’t perfect. I took too many breaks. But, I accepted my imperfections. I put something on paper and started making progress. Eventually, I got it done. That’s okay. I will write faster and take fewer breaks next time.

I was happy that I got it done.

This is a story from my past. Hope you find it helpful to your journey of beating your own procrastination.

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