Tuesday, February 26, 2013

2013 TKR: The Startalittles versus the Putitovs

The Startalittles versus the Putitovs
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Meet the 
Putitovs
Everybody knows the Putitovs. They are those voices in your head telling you that you can put it off until later. People who really have trouble with the Putitovs call themselves procrastinators. Some people bring in the Head Nazis to beat up on the Putitovs.
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In time, most people learn to deal with the Putitovs with some kind of scheduling. But maybe you are tired of dealing with the problems left over by the Putitovs. Then what?
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Enter the Startalittles
Try bringing in some other voices. After all, it is your head. For example, try the Startalittles. They are much easier to have around than the Head Nazis.
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The theme of the Startalittle is--you guessed it--take any job that you want to put off and start it a little. Don’t spend much time. About twenty minutes should do for a Startalittle. 
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Here are several ways to start a little:
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Start planning on how you will do the job.
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That way you get around the Putitovs. They think you are not really starting.   But when you start by planning, you may come up with an easier way to do it.  You also get around the Head Nazis.   They will think you are starting.  Because, after all, you are starting.  Sort of.
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More suggestions:
  • Make a list of things you will need to do when you are really starting.-
  • Collect ideas about how other people do this kind of thing. 
  • Break the job plan into mini-projects and do the first mini-project.
You get two benefits from the Startalittles
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 First, the parts of your brain that manage concrete jobs get a head start.  Once you get your brain started, it may come up with other things for you to do while you get started.  If the job takes a lot of planning, exploring, or thinking things through, you will probably find that those other parts of your brain get a lot of the groundwork done before you really start.
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The second benefit is a better estimate of the time the job will take. Most jobs look easier in the abstract. When you get down to the concrete work, you begin to get a better sense of how much time the job will take.
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Procrastination is just another name for underestimating the job
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Wondering whether this would work for you?
Try it a few times. Next time you have something you have to do and want to put it off, Startalittle on it.  Right away.  Just a little.  Ten or twenty minutes.  See what happens.
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