Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Never Bite Off More Than You Can Chew- Procrastination

     I'd hate to admit this, although if you know me, it really isn't a secret... I'm... a procrastinator. When it comes down to it, like the important things- you know, work- an actual job, I can get myself motivated and work extremely well. Unfortunately, I haven't had to work in four years, so motivation has escaped me, most days.

     Around last Thanksgiving, I thought that I would start crocheting again. I had posted some pictures of projects that I could do and even put up prices. I thought that I could crochet enough that I would be able to start doing craft fairs and bring in a little extra income without really having to leave home to do it, giving me more freedom to watch the kids, but also work. I had gotten a couple of orders and did really well until I got one really BIG project. Someone I knew wanted me to crochet a queen size blanket. I figured, "How hard could it be?" Well the answer was- mediumish hard.

     I spent weeks crocheting this blanket. The stitching was beautiful and it came along wonderfully. Unfortunately, our family became plagued with a stomach bug and then the flu. It took up my time because I didn't want to be working on this blanket and then have kid throw up on it, so I didn't work on those days. When the kids got out of school for Christmas and New Year break, I worked day and night to finish the blanket... and I did it! The only thing I had left to do after doing the body, was to put together the extra design- something that I thought could be done easily, but it wasn't. Everything I tried looked stupid. It ended up taking me about four extra months to get it together to a point where I felt that maybe, it was ok and sent it along with a family member to give to the person who wanted it. It didn't have to take that long, especially since the bigger part of it was the actual blanket base, but I got overwhelmed. I didn't want to work on it, because I wanted it perfect and it just looked stupid. I've tried a project here and there afterwards, but I'm just not into it anymore.

     I'm a creative person and since being home, I have written three complete children's stories. I started of with great motivation and even tried to work with someone to get them published, but it was a bust when they wanted $1,500 to illustrate and publish just one. Without an extra income, I figured it could wait. I have, since then illustrated one of my own, but haven't put it together. Right now, it's overwhelming. I don't know where to start; so instead of moving forward, I put it on halt.

     Last year, I started an adult Christian novel and have paused at chapter 11. I started working on it again, the other day after a few months break. Will I be able to continue writing it? It probably won't be very long and really, it will probably be finished with just a few more chapters. It only took me a few days to write the first three. If I put effort into it, I could finish it. I could officially call myself an author. Would I have enough determination to get it published?

     I did, actually, publish a short story a couple of months ago. I went through Kindle Direct Publishing, just to try it out. If you look up "All Hail the Repairman" or my name, Brittany Vantrease, you'll find it there. I had joined an online writing group that sends you writing prompts. The winner of that prompt received $50 and got their short story published. I didn't win, but that's ok. I had actually written something and then got it published. I finished something.

     When we procrastinators pick up something big, it's overwhelming. It can make something we enjoy turn into a chore. I have a friend who told me once, "I'd like to help you, but you know what its like to do something when you don't have the motivation for it." - I paraphrased that a bit, but it was along similar lines. This is from the same friend who always had straight A's when I had C's. She's always been able to work when she needed too, but like procrastinators like me, extra projects can really bring a person down. 

       When you procrastinate, it's better to do the small things first and work your way up to the bigger thing. This blog was something small that I started out with. I may have taken a break from writing, but this is something that I have been able to pick back up, easily. Since my kids are now home for the summer, I'm going to try to work better on not procrastinating because it really makes more of a mess and gives me more than I can do. When I see that there are plates on the table, I'm going to try to pick them up. When the sink gets filled with dishes, I'm going to try to run them through the dish washer before I end up having to just hand wash everything because the spaghetti from two nights ago has dried to the plate and the dishwasher can't touch it. 

     If I do this, work a little at a time, then I won't have to be overwhelmed by the mess that gradually built up and I'm too overwhelmed and anxious to clean, therefor causing me to be anti-social because I won't want anyone to come to my house. I will try to adhere to the schedule I made last year so my kids don't spend the whole day watching tv. I may even exercise and lose the weight I've been saying I was going to for years. But! I will take baby steps and I won't try to bite off more than I can chew. 

How to Have an EASY Thanksgiving With 7 Easy-to-Make Side Dishes

Thanksgiving is a wonderful holiday (political things put aside) to celebrate each year with your family and friends. When I was yo...

Follow