Perfectionism + procrastination is a loop that I’m constantly fighting. As I work at revamping Infinitely Chelle, I am reminded once again that breaking the cycle requires consistent work and a constant reminder to slow the f#ck down.
Learning My Own Patterns
I just very recently learned what my own patterns are. One day it just clicked for me:
- I get excited about the thing
- I plan for the thing. Ohhh do I ever PLAN!
- I start the thing
- Go back to the plan…
- Edit the thing….
And THAT is my loop. I get stuck on a loop between steps 4 and 5 until I give up (for a while) and find something “new” to be excited about. It’s always a battle and one that I sometimes lose.
Unfortunately, knowing your own pattern isn’t everything. It takes constant work and active thinking. Take me for example, I already knew my pattern and yet I find myself in the cycle… again… *awkward laugh* anyway…
I’m just happy I realized I was in the cycle this time. I can work on getting out.
The Art of Slowing Down
How did I realize that I was in the cycle again? I was starting to feel overwhelmed and rushed. I’m proud to say I was able to slow the f#ck down enough to ask myself why I was feeling that way. I wasn’t always able to do that before. Normally, I just go go go!
So why did I feel overwhelmed and rushed? My to-do list was miles long! The stupid thing is… I’m the one who makes the list. I’m a list maker – always have been. Lately, my memory isn’t the greatest so if I think of something, I write it down.
I get super excited over new projects – like really excited – and I plan the shit out of them.
This month, my genius ideas were to open up a Ko-fi printable shop AND to revamp the blog. Two large endeavors on their own! While I am super excited about both projects, lists were appearing left, right and center! It started with a list of printables to create for the shop… which then expanded to list what I need to include for each specific printable.
Now, there’s a list of things I want to include in the blog and a list of posts I want to write (and much more). This post (the one you’re reading right now) was sitting with the title only in my drafts for days because I knew I wanted to write a post for it… though I didn’t know what to write nor how to write it.
*take a breath*
I asked myself the following question…
Why was I rushing?
I’m not in school. I’m not at work. There is no due date. I should take my time. There really is no rush. I’m writing this blog post and the blog isn’t even public yet! The public won’t miss what they don’t know exists. They don’t know my blog exists yet. Even when it IS public, I have to remember that I set the schedule. Quality over quantity. I don’t have to bust out a post every week because I assume people want a weekly post.
What I am going to assume, is that my readers want to read something well written… not something put together in a rush, right?
The Perfectionism + Procrastination Loop Is So Detrimental To Mental Health.
When I get overwhelmed, I tend to give up. I don’t mean give up forever… just for the moment. Possibly just for the day. Ahem! Let’s be real… I put things off for MONTHS! These actions, however, causes my negative thoughts to come forward.
I’m either too lazy, or my brain tells me (when it comes to the blog) that noone cares, noone’s going to read it. Why am I bothering?
*record scratch* Noone wants to hear that.
Also, I’m not lazy. I meticulously plan for perfection (which is bad on it’s own, I know). I’m just stuck in the planning phase. Constantly. I procrastinate – though not on purpose – the actual project by staying in the planning stage. I feel good when I plan. I feel productive.
The problem? I’m not ACTUALLY accomplishing anything. There’s nothing for people to see. *facepalm*
I’m glad I was able to slow down this time. If I continue down this path, I know I’m just going to get extremely overwhelmed and I will feel depressed because I’m not actually accomplishing anything. When I feel that way, I just short circuit, and stop functioning all together.
Nobody wants that. Nobody needs that.
*take a breath*
I have to go back to the basics. What one of my therapists taught me. Slow down.
I have to learn to manage my time better. Just because something is on the Master To-Do list doesn’t mean they all have to get done TODAY!
I should plan SMALL… remember to split tasks into even smaller tasks. For example, each printable could be split up into 3 days:
- one to plan and execute
- one to create graphics
- one day to post and share on social media
It doesn’t have to be all done in one day.
I really don’t want to burn out when I haven’t even gotten my toes wet yet.
How Do I Break The Perfectionism + Procrastination Loop?
I’m sure you’ve noticed it by now…. What do I do to break the loop? Like I mentioned before, it takes constant work and active thinking.
Take a breath. Yes, in the middle of it all… take a deep breath.
I know that it’s easier said than done. It is still something I’m working on.