The “Just 15 Minutes” Approach to Achieving Your Goals
How to make yourself work when you just don’t want to work
When I first start a project, I’m all fired up and ready to go. But writing takes longer than I can sustain my enthusiasm. As the weeks, months, (years) slip by, progress periodically stagnates.
There are many people who only write when they feel their muse talking to them, then the words flow out of them. Full chapters, books come out in states not-so-far from a finished product.
I am not one of those people.
I’ve spoken before about my marathon-style writing. In a world of hares and turtles, I am a turtle. A turtle who’s been known to take breaks and binge on tv, as though the race itself were on pause.
But, eventually, shame and guilt kick in. I’ve been slacking off and disappointing the one person I can’t avoid: myself.
That’s when I tell myself: JUST FIFTEEN MINUTES
If I just sit down at my desk, pull out my manuscript and do something, it’ll count myself as having made some progress, as having not skipped yet-another-day of working on my novel. I could do a great variety of things:
- take notes
as long as I do it for at least 15 minutes.
Sometimes, that’s all I do. I inch forward with the tiniest bit of progress, just enough to claim credit.
But you know what?
Most of the time? I get a lot more than just 15 minutes of work done once I actually get my butt into that chair.*
What tricks do you have for getting work out of yourself?