Question: When you have a project that needs to get finished and the last thing in the world you want to do is work on that project, what do you do to stop procrastinating and get started working on it?"
Ted Dawson: "I use the tried and true method of Visualization. I visualize holding the check in my hand.
Otherwise, one way I ease into a project is to do whatever mindless preliminary work is necessary. I'll cut paper, pencil in guidelines, search for and print out reference pics if necessary, whatever. That puts me in something of a work mode that can accelerate.
Oftentimes what keeps me from working on a project is the large number of drawings I have to do. I used to look through all the specs when I would receive them, but I noticed that would overwhelm me. Now I just start with the first one and muddle through.
Sometimes I'll use the Charles Schulz method. I'll just sit down and start doodling, or just do some free-flow sketching of nothing in particular.
I don't know if any of this addresses the psychological block. Probably the thing that works best is for me to roughly formulate what my workday will be like the night before. That generally programs me for the day.
One last thing is to prepare something that I look forward to listening to while working. I assembled a good playlist of Songs To Work To. I'm experimenting with audio books right now, listening to the first Harry Potter."
Wes Hargis: "It's hard, because there's two types of procrastination for me. The one where I'm avoiding the task and the one where I recognize I'm not in a good "zone" and I'll just blow it if I dig right in. If I sketch at it while I'm watching a program in the background that I enjoy, I can generally get myself interested. Ted mentioned that... part of the process is just keeping yourself at the table long enough to get going.
In this business, after a while (and quite a few tortuous all-nighters) you formulate an idea of just how long you can meander until it's go time and it doesn't matter if you feel inspired, you just have to start cranking.
I like getting started early enough on a project to be able to toss the first stuff I do if it sucks. Because it usually will."
Stacy Curtis: "I find myself in this position quite a bit and I don't know exactly why.
It's not like the projects I have in front of me are something I don't want to work on. Heck, lately, I can't ask for projects more suited to me!
I think a lot of it is because I was born a procrastinator. My first words were, "I'll do it tomorrow."
When I find getting started difficult, I usually go through a series of exercises until I find something that has motivated me to get started....
Sometimes, I think I procrastinate because I've envisioned the job to be more difficult than it is or more work than it actually is. Ever do that with something like painting a room, cleaning out the garage or mowing the yard? I don't know how many times I've procrastinated doing a painting for four or five days, when it has only taken me two days to actually get the work finished. If I could learn how to turn off that part of my brain, I think I'd have a lot less procrastinating happening."
What do YOU do to get yourself motivated to work on a project?
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