Structured procrastination

Putting things off can be turned into a productivity tool:

Perry’s advice is, first, to make a list of the things you have to do. Put a few important tasks at the top—these are the ones you will procrastinate. Then, below them, list some tasks that aren’t as important but that you nevertheless need to do. According to Perry, doing these less important tasks “becomes a way of not doing the things higher on the list.”

(The procrastination-killing tactic to try now (or in 10 minutes, Fast company)

Also Lifehacker lists Five counterintuitive ways to use procrastination and become productive. Structured procrastination is one of the items in the list.


Some To-do systems

The To D’oh! List: Limiting and learning from your mistakes (Lifehacker)

The difference between reminders and to-do tasks (Make sure you can do your to-dos within any given day, Organizing creativity)

One, constantly updated list of to-dos (Autofocus system)

How to prioritise, how to decide what to do (Focus your ambitions with hierarchy of goals, Lifehacker)

People are more likely to procrastinate if it is difficult to even start the work, if there is too much “friction”. That’s why  it is wise to clean the working area, so that the next day you’d be able to start easily: Stop procrastinating by “Clearing to neutral” (Lifehacker). On the other hand, you don’t have to feel ashamed if your desk is cluttered, provided you get stuff done: Why you should have a messy desk (Busy building things)

You can even make your day a story:

Two months ago I started writing my calendar for the next day—including to-do lists, scheduling, and everything else—in the form of a story. My story for the day is no work of Pulitzer Prize winning fiction, nor is it filled with Michael Bay-style highs and lows, but it has helped me better map out my day, schedule it, try new things, and the most curious part—actually remember everything on my lists, no tech tricks required. The idea is to grab the hardest details of your day (the lists, tasks, schedules) and make sense of them in the same way your brain makes sense of the world: through a short, simple story.

(How turning my to-dos into a story boosted my memory and solved my procrastination problem, Lifehacker)