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How to WIN at procrastination!

Want to become a procrastination champion? Get that all important Personal Achievement Procrastination badge during this years National Novel Writing Month? Look no further. I am here to help.

Who am I? My name is Ark, and I am a true Champion of procrastination. And guess what, you can be one too! Below are some of my go-to ways of putting off writing in a fun and strangely productive way.

#1 – Work on your website

This one is a bit obvious. If you are a writer, you probably have some form of website. It might not be a blog-type site, like this one. Maybe its a Facebook page, or even just a Twitter account? It doesn’t really matter, let’s consider them all your ‘website’ for now.

Instead of writing, you could spend a few hours just tinkering with your website. Maybe you want to change the theme? I just did for this blog actually. Or how about a brand new header for your Twitter of FB page? Maybe you even want to go out and take a picture to use yourself. I decided to do that for my new blog theme, and went with a picture I took yesterday when I was walking the dog. You could also start writing a new blog post. Or maybe plan a series of posts you’re gonna publishing later on.

There are a lot of different ways you can tinker away at your website or page for hours and hours, while avoiding writing at the same time. And no rebelling here, so don’t go counting your blog post words. Unless you are a true NaNoWriMo rebel, in which case, you really shouldn’t be writing anything at all if you’re trying to procrastinate. Make a new gallery or inspirational picture compilation instead. Few words required, but it will eat up a lot of your spare time. Win win!

#2 – Start marathoning that TV show you’ve wanted to watch for ages

This one might not be new, and most writers know it’s the go-to way to procrastinate. But since it’s November, and you brain is thinking words words words, I wanted to bring it to your attention anyway. Because it truly is an awesome way to procrastinate. Plus, it’s lot of fun! For instance, if you’ve never seen Supernatural, now is the time to start. During November your should easily get through the first ten seasons, and then you still have more for December, when your brain really needs a break from all those Christmas preparations. And if you don’t celebrate Christmas, fear not, you can still watch those seasons to put off other stuff related to the celebration of your choice.

My own personal choice was Daredevil season three. Unfortunately I started early, so now only have three more episodes to watch tonight. It’s kind of scary, but on the bright side, I haven’t watched everything on Netflix yet, so I’m sure I’ll find something to keep my procrastination going tomorrow.

#3 – Get that advent calendar finished

With December fast approaching, I needed to get my advent calendar sorted. Because yes, I am 35 years old and I still have one. My mother is awesome, so she’s taking care of half of the presents. Which means I have 12 to sort out myself. Now, before November, my brain was focused on how I can’t do anything but write once October came to an end. So I purchased some of them already. Thankfully, I never got around to wrapping them. So today I got a good 30 minutes of procrastination out of wrapping four presents. Yep, I took it nice and slow. Just like a champion procrastinator should.

Four of my calendar gifts nicely wrapped.

Don’t have an advent calendar? Consider making one. After all, it’s fun, and just think of all that time you’re not writing while you’re busy thinking of what to buy, actually buying it, and then wrapping it all nicely.

#4 – Spend time with your family and friends

Are you one of those people who usually tell your friends you won’t be very available in November? Warn you family they may be mostly on their own for a month, while you spend all your free time writing? Now is the time to surprise them! Make plans for a night out with you friends. Or even a weekend-getaway. Plan a full day’s worth of fun with your family, and make sure you are nowhere near a laptop or electrical outlet, just so you won’t feel the need to get a few words written while you have five minutes to spare.

#5 – Go for a walk

Going out for a long walk is the perfect way to lose an hour or two of writing time. If you’re lucky and have a dog, you even have a good excuse for why you can’t be writing. The dog does after all need to be walked. Does someone else in your family usually do this in November (or all the time for that matter)? Tell them that in November, you will walk the dog, so they can relax. It’s perfect. Just make sure not to spend all that time thinking about your plot! You don’t want to be accidentally productive.

Moya waiting for her next walk.

#6 – Take advantage of the internet

Did you think I had forgotten the go-to way of procrastination; the internet? Oh no, here it is. We all know the internet is a writers greatest helper, and greatest enemy, at the same time. In November, let yourself get lost in your Social Media. Fall down the rabbit hole while researching, and emerge five hours later in a completely different place, that of course is totally unrelated to the subject you were researching. Be aware though, you may happen to be slightly productive in those first five minutes of research, but as long as you don’t stop, you’ll waste hours you could otherwise have spent writing. And that is after all what we’re going for here. So finding the answers you needed to further your plot is a small price to pay, considering you now probably won’t have time to write much that day anyway.

#7 – Read a book

This is an easy one. Instead of writing your own book, read someone elses instead. Hell, read two, or three. Ten if that’s what it takes. If you’re a writer, you probably have at least one stack of unread books laying about threatening to crush you. November is the perfect time to work your way through it! It may even save your life from death by unread books!

#8 – Get that spring cleaning done early

The last on my list is probably also the one everyone will be able to relate to. Doing shores. In November, most of us either put this off, or have told our family that they will have to pick up the slack for a month. A lot of the time, you may also procrastinate in order to put off cleaning the house. But in November, it is writing we are trying to avoid, which means you may as well get started on that all-important spring cleaning a few months early. Hey, think of it as a really thorough Christmas/Holiday cleaning instead. One where you clean everything, from the floors to the walls, the ceiling and inside every cupboard in your house.  May as well do the garage while you’re at it. It’ll keep you busy for days, and you don’t have to worry about it in December either. It’s the ultimate win win situation!

 

There you have it. Eight easy ways to put off writing in November. The best part is, most of them work year round as well. So if you never want to be able to write another word, you know just how to do it. Though, if you still want to win in November, I guess these can also show you what to be wary of. But then you won’t get that awesome Procrastination Badge. I guess you’ll just have to decide what is more important to you.

Or you can do what I do, and go for both. Be a procrastination champion, and still win NaNoWriMo. Cause guess what, it is possible. You just have to work at it.

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