What to Do When You Can’t Get Anything Done

The last two or three days have been incredibly unproductive for me. Rather than panic and ruin everyone’s lives, I sat back and thought about why. More importantly, I have thought about how many other people deal with this crap all the time. So I came up with some coping mechanisms for those times when, no matter your intentions or advantages, you can’t get anything done. This is mostly about writing, but it goes for anything.

  • Don’t freak out.

This is not the most important, but it is the thing you have to do first. Put a kibosh on the (perfectly understandable) desire to just flip your shit. It might feel good for a little while, but it’ll just wear you out and upset anyone you take with you. It doesn’t get back the time you lost, and it wastes more. It is not worth it.

  • Don’t blame anyone.

Blaming other people for you not getting something done–even if they absolutely contributed to it–will just make you angrier and likely lead to freaking out. If you really need to blame someone, then quietly admit that yeah, it is a little soul-sucking when that person just ignores your I AM WRITING SO FUCK OFF sign and starts talking to you. (multiple times…) Praise the fact that you were writing when they refused to GTFO. Or, if you were looking at Iron Man fanart instead of writing during your designated writing time, admit that Person was rude to you, but you also contributed to wasting your time.

  • Own up.

Don’t dwell on not being productive, but don’t try to justify it either. If you chose to spend your time doing something stupid rather than that thing you need/want to do, there isn’t a reason that can make it better. But it isn’t the end of the world either. There are setbacks that are in and out of your control. IT’S OKAY, I PROMISE.

  • Shake it off.

This one is the most important. It might not help with chronic procrastination, but maybe. It does help when you keep getting interrupted. Yes, it makes me want to rant about how everyone in the world must think they’re more important than me. Truth is… everyone in the world does think he or she is more important than me. Than you. We’re all horribly selfish. Your roommate will always think the fact that he’s playing Fallout 4 is more important than the fact that you are studying for mid-terms and hate gunshots and Inon Zur. Your mom will always think her cat puking is more important than you being on the phone with your insurance company after a recent car collision.

Deal with the distraction as best you can, and don’t let it stay with you. Be as selfish as They are. Their bullshit doesn’t have to stick to you.

This stuff works. I feel fine and I finished a blog post. I got something done.

Disclaimer: I don’t hate Inon Zur and my mother does not have a cat. I made up those examples.

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