Today’s post is a guest post from my awesome Hubbubu, who has been kind and humble enough to not just admit his struggle, but to blog and share his experience in trying to overcome procrastination to become a more disciplined person. We pray this encourages all of us on this pilgrimage of overcoming our struggles. This is a 6 week instalment to journey our progress!
Achieving Better Discipline (By N, the Hubbubu) – Instalment 1/6
I have always been struggling with the issue of Procrastination. Over the years, despite starting many initiatives to overcome the problem (writing on a notebook, using digital list as my reminder) and making some head way, there will always come a time when I will subconsciously digress and inch back to my old ways. This is always a vicious cycle, and every time I slip, I would always feel that I would have achieved more of my potential if I could eliminate my procrastination.
More recently, after getting married, my wife brought up a good point – procrastination was merely a symptom of a deeper root problem i.e. lack of discipline. It kinda hit me after awhile that wow, I have been looking at the issue wrongly. Procrastination was the symptom but it was not the illness.
Then i ask myself, how should I improve my discipline then? Obviously, attempting big ambitious plans (when I can’t stick to small initiatives) to discipline myself would deter me rather then help me. I decided then to look around for something small enough that i could stick to to achieve discipline, yet big enough intervention to make a difference in forming new habit of Discipline. On top of that, I set myself a target to achieve it daily in a span of 6 weeks; which is the minimum amount of time required to form a new habit.
I finally decided on a list. Not just a simple list, but a list that allows me to jot every task and commitment. Not only that, I had to do it immediately after I’ve said or thought to myself that I’d do it. Finally each task has to be less then 10 words and have a realistic date set. However, this led to another problem – doing that would amount to a loooong list which would instead of helping me, deter me from even looking at the list because its so long!
Thankfully i found Wunderlist2, its a simple list that allows me to jot down all the stuff i need to get done, set a date for it, include notes and reminders. But how does that eliminate the long list issue? Because it has filters like “Today” and “This Week”, I just need to open to those sections and it shows me a much more achievable list of task. And if it was too overwhelming, i could see immediately and rearrange the task schedule to ensure i am able to achieve it. Finally, I love digital technology and having an app that allows me to add my task into my list everywhere and at anytime just makes it better!
*mind you i’m sure there are other task apps out there and i have honestly tried a few (Task.do, RTM etc..). It is just my personal preference that i find it easier on Wunderlist2 but you should use one that is most convenient for you so you will stick to it!
With this, once I’ve achieved my 6 weeks goal of changing this action into a habit, I would treat myself to a minimum of 1 month on the Wunderlist Pro. Let’s see how this go!
So here is my progress so far:
Week 1 – Entering and Filtering
Putting every task into a Wunderlist2 is challenging. Not due to the app but because i have to keep reminding myself to pick up the phone and type the task in! Really thankful that Wunderlist2 can be accessed on almost every digital devices & syncs very efficiently (and even if it doesn’t sync immediately i can still type in my task and trust that Wunderlist2 will sync everything properly the next time i open it).
This way, when I am at work, I type my task into my Macbook, and when I’m mobile obviously on my mobile and at home, I can input on either one OR on my tablet. The “Today” section is working very well and its always encouraging to see the sign “Congrats! You have nothing due or overdue today” at the end of the day.
Finally, filtering my task into different category helps me to focus, knowing when its work time to ensure that i can clear everything in there before the end of the day! I just pray that as the weeks goes by, it’ll be easier to input my information in.