One of the ways I beat procrastination is to play little games with myself. For example, “I’m going to fill up this notebook before my flight leaves tomorrow.”
I’ve also counted things down on Facebook: “Going to write 1,000 words this afternoon.” Then “500 down, 500 to go.” Then 250, 50, and none.
I have done work sprints with a friend; you can do them with another writer. You both put your heads down and get words on the page during a defined period of time.
I do think time is a better measure of progress than words, because 500 of the right words may take two hours whereas 1000 of the wrong ones can take less time. But when you’re feeling sidetracked these little games can help you get focused.
I also reward myself—I can read that article as soon as I’ve finished this chapter. I’ll buy that pen as soon as I’ve finished writing this book, and so on.
Tell me your favorite games (firstname.lastname@example.org).