Procrastination is all about deferring pain and delaying feelings of guilt. I used to binge Netflix when I was especially depressed- the most painful moments were when one episode ended and the next hadn't yet begun. But feeling more guilty about procrastinating will only make procrastination more tempting. I know it's incredibly hard, but you will have to break the cycle of negative thoughts in order to have the energy to fix this. You have to forgive yourself for everything leading up to now so that you can move forward. (It may be a good idea to find a counselor or therapist to talk to- it might surprise you how helpful it is to talk to someone who will just listen.)
You didn't say anything about what you're working toward, or what you care about. For me, knowing the answer to those questions is the most important part. I worked for a while cleaning houses, which was boring, physically uncomfortable, and often gross work. But at the time, I was saving up for a big project I was excited about, which meant that while I was scrubbing toilets and tubs and mopping floors, I was daydreaming about my future. I knew why I was suffering, which made the suffering not so bad.
I also wanted to recommend a book that helped me when I was in a very low place. Here's a link to the audiobook on youtube: Man's Search for Meaning (I use a youtube to mp3 downloader to skip all those ads)
I hope you can feel the encouragement I am sending you. Good luck:)
I don't see how your life is fucked at all, but rather I see it as that you're at a pivotal point in your life right now and YOU should avoid fucking it up.
You go to university, have a job, and have 8k in the bank. This is a lot better than some!
You're also aware of the problems and they can be resolved. Leave your father's house, learn to cook, stop drinking sugar, and get busy or suffer the consequence.
These might help you out: http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/10-motivational-ted-talks-to-help-you-chip-away-at-your-mental-blocks/
Edit: I just read your other posts and you should definitely leave. Don't ever live for a religion and what makes you think you'll never see your family again?
Get on the centrelink if you leave as you get decent money for studying.
I see you haven't gotten any replies so I'll name a few that have helped me a lot.
The first you should read is The Slight Edge. There's a PDF of it if you just type that + PDF into google. It's a great book that sets a foundation for implementing future self improvement into your life. Basically it boils down to making small incremental changes and building on that momentum. It's a fantastic book to start out with.
Another good one if you struggle with women (or men) or just have low self esteem is Models by Mark Manson. You can also find a PDF of this if you're so inclined. It's kind of like a pick up artist book but without the pick up artist style. It teaches you how to respect yourself, not be needy, open up and not be afraid of rejection, and be polarizing (not have everybody like you, but those that do like you a lot). It's a really good book for people with self esteem issues which IMO is a huge reason why people aren't disciplined, because they don't believe they have what it takes.
These will set a good foundation for you to become more disciplined. Hope it helps.
I used this guy's advice to wake up earlier using my computer's login password. About two weeks into my password change I started getting up between 5-5:30 every morning. I am not a morning person so my wife was shocked...SHOCKED I tell you. Also, this was accomplished with no alarm clock. I just naturally woke up. Kind of crazy really.
I used the password for a month before changing it to something else. It worked for about 4 months and stopped working after some holiday travel and the flu threw a wrench into the works. I'm starting it again today. I LOVED waking up between 5-5:30 every morning and getting a couple hours of writing in before my 2-year-old woke up.
As a psychologist, I completely agree with this concept. People might tend to think that being hard on yourself is a way to boost productivity, but in the long run, it's almost always harmful. Negative judgment of any kind is a mechanism that stops a person from changing and growing, which is how procrastination (or any other emotional issue) is gradually resolved.
The process of mindfulness and then acceptance is the way that leads towards changing the same time-wasting behavior. I wrote a short book on using these principles to overcome procrastination - in my experience, it tends to provide individuals with a different perspective (like the NY Times article) than the regular notion that wasting time is an organizational or self-control problem.
Hey, I would like to strongly recommend a course I found really useful in organizing how I approach learning.
This was a lovely course that provided a lot of practical tools and wasn't condescending. It's not rocket science, and you've probably seen bits and pieces here and there but I think they make a compelling case on how to approach studying.
Other idea would be an edX course on "Justice". It seems like a nice light survey of intellectual schools and should be fun to think about given that you have leisure.
I highly recommend you check out the book So Good They Can't Ignore You by Cal Newport. The thesis of the book is that passion is overrated, and you should be focusing on what you're good at instead.
What are you good at? What talents do you have that set you apart from your friends or family? Which of them are marketable? Give your strengths your focus and attention and your passion will follow.
The Internet is a dangerous drug. Don't underestimate the way it can mess with your brain. There is a book on the subject called The Shallows, What the Internet is doing to our brains that discussed this.
Like with any addiction, some people are more likely to get trapped. But knowing the risks and taking it seriously is the first step. And then with any addiction you have to cut yourself off. A therapist that is experienced with this could really help if you find you are unable to manage it on your own.
Honestly mate, finding your "passion" is not the problem. It's your unwillingness to commit to a role or field of study is the problem. You seem to be the guy to give up at the first sign of real work, incapable of handling any discomfort. You think your "passion" is this magic thing that you will find enjoyable and easy ALL the time AND will instantly make people throw money at you. People don't care if you've found your passion for painting licking, they care that you add value to their lives. To create value requires work, often it requires a lot of work upfront.
You won't find any nice words from me today (the other comments will make up for that), but I will suggest some books.
Mastery by Robert Greene. The Millionaire Fastlane. The War of Art. Resilience by Eric Greitens. The Practicing Mind. King, Warrior, Magician, Lover by Robert Moore.
All these books I believe can give you the insight you need to move on from your current setting.
Build a habit loop ( read "The Power of Habits"). The loop goes;
Cue. What happens that starts the habit loop. Waking up and putting on running shoes. An alram on your phone etc.
Process. The habit itself. Running.
Reward. Boasting online. Marking X on a calendar. Thinking about how awesome you are for running everyday.
It takes willpower to start running everyday. The aim is to make running a habit. Something that you crave and will do automatically.
Try setting a fix time that you go running. If you go running early, try laying out your gear the night before. So you can just wake up and go. When you are running and finish running, tell yourself how awesome you are. Be that guy that brags on Facebook. It makes you feel good so do it. Keep a training log, track distance, time and mood. Compete with yourself, brag about your new PR.
Ah! The Art of Manliness. 30% Self-Improvement, 10% philosophy and 60% Dad jokes. I love that site.
That being said, since reading "Willpower Instinct" and "Deep Work", I have looked into my smartphone use. Here's some tips and techniques
Using a dumb-phone is always a last resort. Smartphones are great tools for improvement when used efficiently.
Uninstall social media apps. As much as able.
Do not install games built for addiction. As much as able. (I have lost most of my real life friends to Clash of Clans. Please seriously heed my warning.)
Time-tracking as suggested in the article is an unnecessary hassle to most of us. If you have the mental strength to examine your time usage efficiently, you already have the willpower to start rooting out your negative habits. Cut the middle man.
I have recently started using This App. It's inherent silliness appeals to me.
The problem with time-limiting apps recommended in the article is that they teach you to treasure the wrong stimulations. An app might limit your Facebook usage to a limited time period, but it might turn that one hour of facebook into one of your most craved desires. "The White Bear Effect" ensures that.
Instead of trying to regulate our bad habits, we should nurture the good ones. So I recommend to practice the Pomodoro technique. In time you should rely on addictive apps less and less. Or you know, just go nuclear and delete them all.
Edit - 6. Do not feed the trolls.
If you'd like to learn more about his process and haven't read it yet, I highly suggest his book On Writing. It's a great read, a mix of the craft of writing and autobiography. If you enjoy him at all it's worth the read, even if your goal isn't to write.
I loved all three of his books. I agree with him that one of the single most important things we can learned is learned optimism.
I wear a rubberband I snap whenever I feel myself starting to explain an event negatively.
Check out the ABCDE Method he covers at the end of Learned Optimism.
The Brain That Changes Itself by Norman Doidge MD, Is a book about neuroplasticity and the changes that happen in the brain from how we use it (or don't). The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg and Rewire by Richard O'Connor all discuss studies done on negative behavioral addictions and positive habits. All three books touch among others the subject of pornography and impulsive (underline impulsive) masturbation. In those books are mentioned some studies concluding that prolonged exposure to pornography may cause negative effects in the brain - both physiological and psychological (dsintetisation, dopamine deplition, escalation to weird or more violent porn) there is a very nice presentation done by Gary Wilson Called "Your Brain on Porn" talking about some of the studies mentioned in these books and includes sources in the description.
I use Boosted. It's a beautiful Android app that allows you to track projects. It's minimalistic and quite intuitive. I use it to track chores, study, reading and gaming. You can create a new project and create tasks within that project. For example, under chores I have housework and yardwork. Under reading, I have separate book titles. Under studying, I have different subjects.
It doesn't necessarily give you an amount of time to use, but I use it to compare all projects. There's a report section that breaks everything down really well and a running timeline for a quick glance of what you've accomplished that day.
I just set a goal for each and try to make sure I reach it. And I make sure that I surpass gaming with all other categories by a significant amount. If the time is close, I do something productive instead of gaming.
Hope this helps, good luck.
As a developer myself: I don't know you, but I think you need patience. It is very VERY hard to do coding for 8 hours a day. I want to say that it's even counter-productive.
What I would do is to refactor that time to be something like 5 hours coding then 3 hours soft skills: interview skills, people skills, and this is very important: getting to know other developers in your area. Meetup.com or Facebook groups or Slack groups or whatever is your friend. You need to see developers in action, or at least chat with them. The tools, the workflow, the "what do you do to ...". I learn something new every time I pair or at least chat with a dev, and that is after 5 years of programming. So yeah. Hope this helps.
Re getting sucked into Reddit: I use an app called Freedom. For me it's well worth it. I think there's an app out there that's free. Anyway. It has to be OS level because we can disabled Chrome extensions. ;)
Yup, you've hit the nail on the head.
Perfectionism is paralyzing because perfectionism is fear. Fear that if you don't do it perfectly, you will expose yourself as a fraud or imposter.
You should really check out the book Mindset by Carol Dweck, PhD. It talks about the growth mindset versus the fixed mindset.
Perfectionism is part of the fixed mindset because perfectionism tells us that to be good is an inherent quality-- if you don't perform 'good' then people will know you aren't good, inherently.
But the book goes on to demonstrate that this is based on anxiety, and that true improvement comes from trying and failing. Perfectionism is fear of failure. It has no place in personal growth.
Little side-tip related to habit building: get an app like Loop - Habit Tracker. I've found it to be really helpful in building habits, and it helps getting past little slip ups as well.
"The War of Art" by Stephen Pressfield. It discusses the concept of "resistance" being that force that keeps you from working on your goals...and how to defeat resistance. It's angled toward people with big goals, whether they're artistic, or business, or personal, etc...
So your life is following a trail of whatever mind candy falls in front of you, and your life is mostly determined by external events. You need a plan. Something to work toward.
The best way I've found is to spend time working out your ideal future life. I have heard many successful people talk about some variant of this. Debbie Millman did a podcast with Tim Ferriss where she talked about writing out your perfect day 10 years from now. Jordan Petersen and several other professors wrote up a program to help people sort out this problem. Links below. It's all the same stuff. Figure out where you are and what you want your life to be like, then figure out how to get from A to B. Not the hobbies you want to spend time on, but what does the structure of your perfect day look like? Are you spending it alone or with friends or with a big family? Do you want a lot of money or is a flexible schedule more important? Once you get enough life experience to know what's important to you, you can work toward structuring your perfect days, then you can fill those days with whatever interest you at the time.
A couple options:
Once you have some idea what you want to work toward, you need priorities and boundaries. I'd look at a book like The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. Basically figure out what your priorities are, figure out what the "important but not urgent" tasks are (otherwise the urgent tasks, important or not, will take all your time by default), and schedule those and set boundaries so you get the most important things done. Do more of what you want to become, less of what you don't.
I would recommend checking out THE FOUR TENDENCIES. I've found it really useful to know my type when enacting habit change (which is what it sounds like you want/need.)
You can also take the quiz, but from what you've described you sound like the "rebel" type. Rebels are often frustrating to both themselves and their loved ones. The book has some really really useful strategies for how to frame things for yourself in order to enact the changes you want. (Like to study, to be on time, etc)
It's very interesting. I started gratitude journaling at the beginning of this year. Already it's been incredible. I follow it up by reading a small section from Tools of Titans by Tim Ferris, and then write a small thought for the day. Already it's changing my life. I broke down my yearly goals into monthly goals, and then review each month as to how closely I met them. It's helped me drop 5kg and save money. I am such a believer now in the morning ritual.
This is/was me. I found an outstanding book that helped me so much, Mindset by Carol Dweck. It talks about the disservice parents and teachers do by praising 'innate' intelligence rather than effort. People who are stuck in a mindset where they were born with intelligence and you either have it or you don't, avoid things that are difficult for them and feel inadequate if things don't come easily or if they fail. The book outlines the differences with examples including long term studies and guides you into making that shift to becoming someone that values effort and determination and knowing that those are the things that truly make you smarter and lead you to grow as a person.
Depends what you're looking to achieve. As you mention those insanity or p90x workouts can cause injury because of the high intensity and once you stop doing those workouts the weight can come back on too if you dont keep on top of it.
Start off small so you dont burn yourself out. There is a great app called 7 minute work out https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=se.perigee.android.seven you can do back to back workouts with that if you wanna get the most out of your 30 minutes. Couple that with running for half an hour every other day will get you on your way for a great foundation, regardless of what you are looking to achieve.
And as i said keep it light and easy to begin with, consistency is key in fitness and setting small achievable goals will amount to a big one when looking back.
Hope that helps.
Man, what I wouldn't give to be 28 with zero responsibility again. The things I could do. And let's be clear, if you are single without kids, you have a ton of free time and the world is at your fingertips. People way busier than you are getting better at things and changing their life.
There was a guy named George Dawson. At 98 he started learning to read. At his 100th birthday he read his birthday cards for the first time. At 102 he published his first book.
You don't find a passion. You get good at something and when you achieve a level of competence it becomes your passion. Read the book So Good They Can't Ignore You. You got good at a game, that's not trivial. It's just not something you can monetize. Spend some time and get good at something else you enjoy that you can make money at. If it takes a few years then no big deal.
There are some basics everyone should aim for. Eat healthy. Exercise. Get enough sleep. Be around people. We aren't made to be alone. The research is pretty clear that the more money people make and the lower sense of community you experience the depression and suicide rates go up. Your fix could be as simple as going for walks and getting to know your neighbors.
You might also check out a book, The Way of the Warrior Kid. It's something a lot of us should have read when we were 12, and it's something any adult who didn't read would benefit from who wants to get their life in order.
There are lots of great books you can tackle. Here are some of the ones I started with.
Getting Things Done - David Allen
- The full system is a bit heavy for me but the principles have completely changed how I run my life
The Now Habit -
An older book but for me the part that was interest was understanding and reflecting on procrsatination
The Power of Habit - Charles Duhigg
- A good primer on how we form habits and how to change them. This one was really helpful for making progress on meaningful behavior change
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People recommended by lukeymane is also pretty good.
Self Care / Acceptance:
This is area is also really hard but important. Because on the road forward you will have set backs. That is ok. It is expected and normal. What matters is how you re-engage with the challenge ahead going forward.
The Undervalued Self - Elaine Aron
- This one help me through it
Buddhist Geeks Podcast
- I am not religious, but this podcast helped me explore meditation and different ideas about self which really helped me with this one.
Not so sure about all of this - for me, it boils down 'Pull yourself up by your bootstraps' wisdom where you transform yourself into your own drill sergeant.
But, to live is to wonder and ask questions, to seek out answers, even though they likely won't mean what we want them to. It's to be full of doubts and insecurities, to be riddled with dilemmas about how and what should be done. Yet, all of that does not have to be a barrier to a happy and fulfilled life.
Being all action, all of the time might work for some and that's great. But, for the rest of us, the idea should not be to kill off that insecure and doubtful part of our consciousness but to listen to it and try to work with it, (edit: I wrote a short book how this process can be used to overcome procrastination) while not allowing ourselves to be governed by it either.
I believe that there is a strong emotional component to binging on sugar. I spent many years doing it whenever I was stressed, and it was terrible.
I highly recommend this book. It helped me to broaden my thinking about why and how I ate, and as a direct result of having encountered these ideas I now hardly ever binge.
I wish you lots of luck! It is a long but very worthwhile journey.
There are a lot more books that have changed me. I don't want to point to one set of books, but rather the act of reading and exploring new ideas.
For the article I read;
As for a top 10, I'll do a top 5;
>Consider wearing a pair of blue light blocking glasses, starting 2 hours before bedtime.
Also, check out the utility called "f.lux" which automatically shifts the color temperature of your screen based on the sun's position in the sky. Even if it doesn't help normalize your circadian rhythm as it's claimed to do, the lower color temperature is easier on tired eyes at the end of the day.
A fantastic book that everyone should read: Feeling Good (the new mood therapy) by David Burns M.D. is all about this subject. It talks about bibliotherapy, therapy through reading self-help books, and cognitive practice, essentially, you are what you think.
If you can figure out your thoughts, and figure out why you're having these thoughts, you can work to change these thinking habits. Meditation is the authoritative tool for this in general, but the book has exercises and scientifically backed practices that have been proven to be just as if not more effective than drugs, and longer lasting. Check it out, it's worth your time.
I've had a similar issue except I have no pets. A friend of mine recommended this book to me, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of De-cluttering and Organizing. It was a short read for me. I ended up following most of the advice in the book. Basically it makes you get rid of things you don't need. Makes cleaning easier in the future.
Thanks for the post! Reminds me of Charles Duhigg's work. If you're interested, his book The Power of Habit helped me stop biting my nails and become a more productive student.
I actually started on this a while back - after being inspired by a chapter in Stephen Covey's 'The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People'. I say started because I'm slightly useless at times (as I'm sure many of us here are haha) and need to go back and refine it all - but hey, it's a 'living document' or whatever.
Here's what I came up with:
Not OP, but whenever this question is asked I always recommend Waking Up: A Guide to Spirituality Without Religion by Sam Harris for a general overview what mindfulness is all about and what is a scientific reason behind it. But if you are struggling with consistency of your practice, I would give Headspace a try, it really made me sit every day for past three months and meditate.
A lot of people are advising to start slow in terms of the number of habits. My experience has been to start slow in terms of the requirement for what constitutes your habit forming behaviour.
From your list I would do the following:
Five habits is not a lot to take on at once. I've done more, but as I say, they all had super easy minimums. The main thing was to establish the rhythm.
I used this app to keep track of things.
I highly recommend the app Insight Timer. It tracks all your meditation stats and has tons of specific guided meditations.
If anyone would like to investigate this concept further, I recommend a book called The Slight Edge: Turning Simple Disciplines into Massive Success and Happiness.
I'm halfway through it now, worth checking out.
You can get App Usage for Android (not my app).
On iOS apps like this are not available because of the security restrictions but it's possible to see built-in app usage stats at Settings → Battery → Clock icon.
Thanks for the fantastic post. I would like to add the system I use to get to bed and get up on time in case others struggle with that like I did.
I highly recommend the app Sleep As Android it took me years of tweaking before I was finally able to set up a system to beat my stupid brain and get out of bed with 1 alarm no matter what. I did it using that app.
Here's what I did to wake up for work without issue for years without fail:
I applied the same technique to getting to bed on time, which is actually equally as important to getting up and establishing a good circadian rhythm:
My alarm goes off at bedtime and being unable to turn the alarm off unless I go upstairs forces me to go up to my bathroom.
Since I am up there anyway I usually decide to brush my teeth and take out my contacts and engage in the rest of my evening routine.
Since I have a book to read sitting by my bed, I am usually not averse to just hopping in bed and achieving my bedtime goal.
If I want to get the right amount of sleep I have to do this at 10:00pm! which is insanely difficult for a person who used to like to stay up until at least 1:00am and damn the consequences!
The system works great for me. Hope it helps someone.
Edit: Fixed www.sleepyti.me link
Stop. Stop. Stop. Please Stop Blaming Yourself.
I'm tired of reading on this sub about people who feel guilty about their lack of self-discipline.
Willpower is a fucking myth. You have a finite amount of it every day. (Thinking Fast & Slow is great at explaining this and other faults with our "rational" mechanisms)
I was going to write a long rant, but then I realised that this article on wait but why, goes in depth on exactly why you procrastinate, why it's perfectly natural and how you can fucking beat it.
Read it, then I strongly suggest you read the books we have on the wiki, mainly The Power of Habit. Another excellent book is The War of Art or even better Bird by Bird, but those are geared towards writing. (if you think bestselling authors don't procrastinate, trust me you are wrong. They are the king of procrastinators and they know it.)
You are way better off realising just how your neurology is wired to make you procrastinate, and then to build daily habits that get you to work a little bit every day. (Don't forget the social elements of studying. The Lone Wolf in University is a fucking myth. The people who excelled on my Physics degree where the ones who met in the common room or the library at least twice a week).
As one super prolific successful ghostwriter who outputs about 2 bestselling books a year puts it:
"My only daily goal is to write two shitty pages. That's it."
(Also if you're a heavy reader, only choose to read one of the books I recommend. Us readers love using education and more reading, and paralysis by analysis to delay taking action).
This sounds a lot less like a lack of discipline and more like you're struggling to express your emotions. Discipline, to me, suggests burying your emotions, and that's no good. Those emotions don't go away, they just go down into the basement and lift weights. Being able to be comfortable with your emotions and understand how you're feeling is really helpful. It's something that I struggled with too, so I'm not talking out of my ass and I'm empathetic to what you're going through.
It starts with being more compassionate to yourself and not blaming yourself when you don't live up to your own expectations. Be patient and kind with yourself.
This book, Chris Germer's The Mindful Path to Self-Compassion was incredibly helpful for my own journey. Meditation has helped a ton. There are some guided meditations for free on Germer's web site here.
That's good to hear! I did therapy as part of my education and I'd recommend it to anyone.
Are you working on this issue in therapy? In that case I'd maybe check with them for suggestions, or what they think about you doing it parallel to treatment. I'd suggest you don't take my advice over your therapist if they'd disagree with it.
As for books - it's a little tough since the manuals and books I rely on are in Swedish or by Swedish authors. Here's some I found from a quick search though that I dare recommend:
The Anxiety and Worry handbook - pretty comprehensive guide to all kind of anxiety and worry related issues. Easy to recommend since Aaron Beck is a co-author (founder of CBT).
Mind over Mood - not familiar with the authors but looks good. Authors are cognitive therapists from what I can tell.
If you look up those books you'll see suggestions for others as well. My suggestion would be going to your local library and see if any of them are available, or look for similiar books (just check that they are written by psychologist or about a treatment method, not self-help or inspiration). CBT is pretty uniform and any decent book will have a similiar theoretical framework and pretty similiar methods. The best one will be the one you want to keep reading :)
As a further tip for number 5, I recently started using an alarm app that forces you to perform an activity in order to shut off your alarm.
You can choose between solving some mathematic equations, shaking your phone X number of times, or scanning a barcode of something you have in your house.
Prevents you from just hitting that snooze button again and again and forces you to get thinking/moving.
Highly recommend if you struggle getting out of bed in the mornings like I do. https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=droom.sleepIfUCan&hl=en_AU
Exactly. I like how this is described by Carol Dweck in the book Mindset.
Loosing self worth after failure is sign of wrong fixed mindset while people with good growth mindset see then as learning oportunity.
I really like this website called 750words.com for getting this done. It's a blank canvas, minimal formatting, and the word counts to get things done are pretty good motivation to keep going!
I will promise that some days I write absolute crap - as in I'm embarrassed as to how bad it is and when I read it I cringe. But there are other days where it's writing gold and I can use what I'm working on for papers for my grad classes, my thesis, blog posts, whatever.
Definitely check out some books by Cal Newport, and the Coursera class "Learning how to Learn"
It's possible your study methods are inefficient and learning better ways to study could help you get better grades with less time spent.
What you have got going for you though is grit and determination, which is apparently a better predictor of future success than grades (see Mindset by Carol Dweck)
Best of luck!
Here's the most important part of The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg:
Cue - What makes you start to do it (a hyperlink to an addicting website, sitting on the couch right before turning on the TV). Take advantage of this to creating habits.
Routine - What you do - eat, exercise, watching TV, ect. Replace this part of the habit to change it completely (instead of drinking just gulp some water). This is the most effective way to change the habit.
Reward - The very desire or pleasure that drives you to do it, like a good taste in your mouth, feeling of accomplishment, ect. Try ~~removing this reward.~~ to replace this with a negative punishment. Conditioning. Common examples of this solution: how adults scold children, shock therapy (I am not recommending this), self-penalization.
EDIT: Last sentences of Routine and Reward, from some discussion with /u/ExplicitInformant.
The only moment you control is now. What you have done is done and what happens tomorrow isn't something you can control.
1 1/2. Start sleeping on a fixed schedule. To bed at a certain time and up at a certain time. Maintaining a strong sleep pattern helps a lot.
Start a regime of whatever you need to stay on task. Coffee with a b-complex vitamin is a good place to start- but take after yogurt or breakfast to mitigate any possible stomach upset.
Walk around the block once a day. If you aren't doing this already, it will have huge benefits. If you already do that expand the distance, time or intensity to your liking.
Read up/listen to audiobooks on meditation and/or self-help/development programs. May i suggest: Full Catastrophe Living and Re-Create Your Life.
Minfulness Meditation helps a lot. You will feel your problems aren't as pressing and that it isn't hard to take action.
Best of Luck!
Forest is a great app to encourage us to move away from the phone and focus on what's in front of us, you might like it https://www.forestapp.cc/ It's helped me from time to time.
As a student I have this problem too, but I found that using a light-therapy lamp helps a lot. They are normally used to alleviate winter depression, but I found that they are useful for stabilizing your circadian rhythm.
What I do is turn it on every morning at 6:30 AM for half an hour while i sit at my desktop. I can tell that it has made a significant improvement on my energy levels, because the days when I forget to use it are my least productive.
Here is a short article explaining some details:
Also remember to get up and move regularly. It doesn't have to be anything extreme, just get out of your chair and take a short walk.
If you haven't already, watch this TED talk: Jane McGonigal: The game that can give you 10 extra years of life. It should be called "the game that can make you want 10 extra years of life." Then you can find SuperBetter right here.
It helped me crawl out of my pit of grad school misery, when giving up on everything seemed like the best idea ever. There really are small things you can do (small enough for a depressed person) to train yourself to feel better.
I've used this before too and it's great.
The source code is freely available over at https://github.com/iSoron/uhabits (this means that anybody is free to learn from it and even make their own version if they want).
The developer has also, in the past, been active over at /r/androiddev, helping new developers with their questions.
Get the app
Set it up so that your Youtube time is limited to a few hours a day at a designated time. (5-7pm every day for instance).
You want every other hour besides the designated time to block youtube. You may as well do the same thing for Reddit.
Do it and stick to it. The app will not let you access those websites outside the designated time period. The only way to stop it from doing this is by deleting it off your computer.
Give it a week or two and your "obsession" will become much more controllable.
aand of course, https://www.amazon.com/Power-Now-Guide-Spiritual-Enlightenment/dp/1577314808
Ah, das Ding.
I'll tell you, I'm in the same boat as yours. Dropped out of college last year, starting music studies in september.
There is nothing wrong with us, friend. It is simply Resistance.
The more you want to pursue a craft, the more you fear putting your soul into it. That means working. It's like a supernatural force grabs you by the balls and tells you you're not strong enough.
Tells you it ain't worth it, that there's some Asian in Chinaland who can do it three times better without breaking a sweat, that even though you try you'll never be good.
A bunch of useless fucking drivel.
The bad news is that Resistance is relentless. I'm sorry to tell ya, mate, but this is the first day of the rest of your life. And the more you love what you do, the more you're gonna fight against it. The more you'll have to struggle to work.
The good news is that Resistance can be beat. By merely sitting your arse down in the chair and drawing, you have defeated nothingness. By merely taking action, you have conquered the void.
Of course, that's not all there is, but space is limited. I highly recommend reading Steven Pressfield's book "The War of Art", where the whole concept of Resistance is explained. Really opened my eyes.
Best of luck to you on your journey.
Have a look at the book 'The War of Art'. It talks about resistance, and the reasoning behind why the mind puts barriers in front of things that can be very fulfilling or enjoyable, especially if you are a creative type.
Seconding The Willpower Instinct and Willpower, but an even better book (imo) is <em>The Power of Habit</em> by Duhigg. Seriously amazing book.
>So I decided to get disciplined. I don't know if this is right sub for this.
posts in /r/getdisciplined
Yup, this is the right sub.
If you are looking to change habits in your life, look up the book "The Power of Habit". I've been recommending this book a lot lately, but it will teach you valuable skills if you want to change the habits that dictate your life.
I got mine from Costco, but I got one for my boyfriend from Amazon and it's really nice too!
Yup, as someone who had the exact same problem as OP and now usually gets up without snoozing at all, how I felt about my day made all the difference. If you're depressed and not looking forward to your day, of course laying unconscious in a cozy bed is going to be more appealing than getting up. But if you wake up, immediately start thinking about everything you're looking forward to, and have a morning routine you look forward to it's going to be relatively easy.
Also some other recommendations that have helped me:
First - what you're doing is completely damn normal. People don't tend to be put their full attention to something until the resources required are scarce (see: Scarcity. Highly recommended book.)
To combat this, you can set mini-deadlines within your project. To hard commit to this, you can do something like telling the customer/your boss that you'll have a first draft to them in 2 days so they can give feedback. Or you can come up with some rewards / punishments to incentivize you to meet them.
The Power of Habit - by Charles Duhigg
Business Brilliant: Surprising Lessons from the Greatest Self-Made Business Icons by Lewis Schiff
I'll add an odd one, but did help a ton in the removing distractions in my life:
The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing
Written by: Marie Kondo
Narrated by: Emily Woo Zeller
Blatant self promotion - I made an app to remind me not to use my phone at night. Its like f.lux except it disables your phone entirely. Its free if you want to check it out!
Lifehacker focuses on the small. It embodies what the rest of the world finds pointless about the self-development community. Focusing on apps, in-between tricks, etc. They have very pointless series such as "Weekly Wallpapers" and "Zen Desk." (The names may be different, I haven't read Lifehacker in a long time.)
There are a few good series, namely "How I Work," but most is just sponsorship and links.
If you REALLY need a "life hack" feed to make you feel good every day, http://lifehack.org is one that has actual people writing. (I find it to be repetitive, though.)
For me, I will only read anything with the word "hack" in the title in regards to lifestyle development if I search for help and it shows up.
I find reddit and especially /r/GetDisciplined to be a lot more useful.
I've been meditating for 6 years on and off give or take.
Literally the best book for beginners to advanced is The Mind Illuminated by Culadasa.
A very beginner friendly is Mindfulness in Plain English.
I've also heard good things about Calm and Headspace app as they do guided meditations for you to slowly ease you in.
Just want to add that out of all the beneficial habits I've developed over the years of improving myself, meditation is by far the best one and has had the most significant effect.
Not to say it will have the same effect for everyone, but for me it's immense
While not specifically what the OP is talking about, I highly recommend Do The Work, and The War of Art - https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_War_of_Art_(book), both by the phenomenal author Steven Pressfield. These books are perhaps a less esoteric and more pragmatic approach to our struggle against personal resistance.
I feel your pain brother. This is the same problem I'm training myself out of. I have two tips for you.
One. Motivated is pisswater. It's an emotional response to the anticipation of something good having. Never rely on motivation. What get's shit done, what you strive to grow and strengthen is Discipline (That's whay we're here, not posting memes on getmotivated). If motivation is an emotional response, then Discipline is a logical one, and is fueled by willpower.
Two. Great discipline is like lifting heavy weight, and willpower is the muscle. Right now your discipline is low, the same way the amount of weight sommeone starting in the gym can lift is low. Discipline can be increases through willpower exercises.
Start a willlpower training program, select a discipline exercise to do everyday. Something simple, remember the gym training metaphor. Good examples are meditation, before breakfast walks, gym training, journal writing and practicing an instrument. Pick one or two.
The key is consistity, you must do this task everyday no matter what. If you break down, start again, if its too hard reduce the load. Overtime your willpower is get stronger and your disclipine will allow your it do more tasks. Remeber, training willpower is like training in the gym, no one walks into the gym first time and benches 315lbs, some people start at 70lbs. Sart small, train your discipline, be consistant.
Some reading: "The Willpower Instinct, Keellly McGonigal", "The Practicing Mind, Thomas M. Strener", "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Stephen R.Covey", "Eat that Frog, Brian Tracy"
I use Quality Time and it does exactly what you're describing.
It monitors the amount of time you spend on each app. How many times you've unlocked your phone. How long you've used to your phone. And you can set up alerts on usage, per app usage etc..
It records this information daily and you can review the past two weeks for your usage (paid allows you to review past 6 months usage).
How about trello.com ? There is a progress bar for each task if you add subtasks, but you have to go to the specific task to see its progress bar. It has some other features you might like too.
Get raspberry pi, install Pi Hole, add reddit to the blacklist: https://pi-hole.net/
I have a setup where some computers/phones go through an ad-blocking DNS server (so when it asks for the IP of adnetwork.facebook.com, it gets a fake address), and some other computers get answers from an "honest" DNS. So I can only reddit from my slower computer...
I found this, which references some studies: https://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/features/can-exercising-at-night-hurt-your-sleep#1
For me, there's no way I could exercise before going to sleep. As in, I just wouldn't have the energy or motivation at that point in a busy day. When I'm about an hour from bed, I need a cup of tea and a book, not running shoes.
You should check out the book The Power of Habit. It basically points out that every habit follows the same formula: cue->routine->reward.
The solution is to insert a new routine between the cue and the reward. That takes some time to figure out, but...you need to know what the cue is that let's you know it's time to play games (maybe it's just seeing 8:30 on the clock or your kids going to bed) and you have to figure out what the reward is that you really get out of playing the games.
Source: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing
by Marie Kondo
I thought the book was okay. I do agree with getting rid of everything that is not essential and/or brings joy. My kitchen is due for this treatment to divest myself of too many things.
I would recommend firstly looking into some reading on the topic. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey is a great read and will put you into the right mindset. Start there, get the book + audiobook and implement his ideas into your life.
I use sleep as Android and have a QR code in the bathroom so to stop the alarm I have to scan that QR code. And when you are inches away from the shower you just can't get back to bed.
I must confirm...
I as a chronic procastrinator skipped studying for exam in the weekend just to cram everything in the morning, so I woke up at 6:20AM, instead of regular 9:20AM. I've put on cothes, done twenty push-ups to help me wake up, then immediately started on the textbook.
The results on the exams were horrible, there is only so much you can do in 3 hours. The point is... for the rest of the day I felt very unfamiliar clarity of mind, that stayed with me for the rest of the day.
The bad thing is... I haven't done that since (4 days, I still have a chance!).
The good thing is... you can feel the results immediately, if instant reward won't motivate you... you have a SERIOUS problem.
Since it is probably past 9PM... Good night :)
I'm serious: GO SLEEP NOW!!!
Let me help you... there is this "Power" button on your computer... You usually press it when you want to turn the computer on... Since you now know what I want you to do, save everything that deserves to be saved.
Please, don't skip any of the following steps.
If you use an Android phone, BlackOut may work for you. Unfortunately, I don't know alternatives for iOS.
Be brave and intentional in my actions.
Complete this set of data science courses as a first step toward a more data-focused career. I'm in an entry-level marketing position right now, but my passion is for analytics and metrics.
Maintain a fitness schedule that balances rock climbing and strength training. Right now I'm lifting 3x/wk while taking time off of climbing due to an overuse injury, and next year I will maintain lifting at 2x/wk while reintroducing climbing-specific training 3x/wk.
Keep in better touch with friends who have moved away by setting aside time to make phone calls and write letters.
I like Metafilter; a great, lesser-known aggregator that's been around for a long time. And the Ask Metafilter section used to be the best on the web.
Depending on what your goals are, you might find this app I'm working on helpful: https://nachapp.com. It ties together a few different things (breaking down goals, to-do list, progress tracking, etc) which is a combo I couldn't find anywhere else.
The Pomodoro technique is a fun way to do something similar. There are dozens of apps that allow you to employ this technique and even a few web apps.
I don't know if you've heard of the app Habitica, but it's a way to gamify the way you build good habits and break bad habits (It also has a to-do list built in).
Well, negative self-talk is a real bitch and a half. There's a book called "Learned Optimism" which I suggest. It'll give you some tools for re-training how you talk to yourself which will help. I'd also suggest looking for opportunities to connect with people. Start small. Maybe getting out of the house every day or going for walks. There's a reason that shunning/isolation is one of the harshest forms of punishment in a human society - we are wired to be social, to connect.
It's kind of hard to say what else would be helpful, as I am not a professional nor am I able get really analytical on the information you've shared. It would probably be worth seeing a professional to help give you more targeted advice. I will say however that your issue is likely not a lack of motivation, at least in the sense of being lazy or w/e else (so don't blame yourself). It sounds like you're having some issues that are likely exacerbated by your brain chemistry. Just like you shouldn't blame yourself for getting a cold, nor should you blame yourself for where you are now. That said, you can take some steps to start caring for yourself and digging out of the whole.
I had actually hoped that a differnet book would be choosen for this month.
In fact, I hadn't even read the synopsis for Tools of Titans and despite the title, I read the available ebook sample. I'm not sure why but I spur of the moment ordered the book on Amazon. The next day, as I finished reading the sample, I felt that the style was not to my liking(I have only read self development books that are more like stories than notes). However, after getting the book last night, I already have dozens of pages sticky noted and have been having a hard time putting it down.
If you are on the fence or even not interested in this book, I recommend giving it a try. I think you will be suprised. There really is something for everyone and I imagine I will be picking this book up often in the future to leaf through it and take even more away from it.
I've been doing the same as well. Decluttering is another goal of mine. I've gotten rid of a ton of stuff lately.
Not sure how much decluttering you want to do, but I suggest Marie Kondo's book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. It's a quick read and really informative. There's some woo-woo stuff in there that i don't generally follow (greeting your house, saying thank you to items in tossing/donating/selling, etc), but the basics are incredibly helpful. If you can't afford a book or can't borrow it from someone, there's an app called Overdrive that can connect you to your local library in order to borrow ebooks and audiobooks for free.
Keep going on decluttering! It feels so good to have more space and less stuff. This reminded me to post my old entertainment center on craigslist. So thank YOU! :)
For some reason it was failing to process my comment on YouTube, so I'll just put it here:
This is excellent. Although you've obviously got a large chunk of content directly from sources like The Power of Habit and some webpages/blogs on willpower, you've done well in condensing it into this video for everyone to learn off of.~
Edit: If you don't mind me asking, what jobs do you do? And what made you invest time and energy into a YouTube channel on personal growth when you're studying accounting and finance and already have 2 jobs.
P.S. Subscribed! Love that I've come across a good channel like this at such an early stage; looking forward to seeing it grow!
Don't do it. I'm all for adventures, but a few years from now, which one will be more valued expertice that you can trade for better Job/position/role? Even If you want to get off IT, you need to have a valuable skill that you can use to 'follow your dreams'.
Highly recommend this audiobook, it might be what you need.
What makes jobs great is autonomy. The more rare and valuable expertise you have, the more autonomy and better career moves and better life you can get.
So Good They Can't Ignore You by Cal Newport, narrated by Dave Mallow on my Audible app. Try Audible and get it here: https://www.audible.com/pd?asin=B00995OX28&source_code=ASSORAP0511160006
Many posts abound on this. I suggest you research a few of these. Hopefully many others will give you better and more complete info.
- Pomodoro technique.
Meditation (nice timer app for this called Insight Timer).
On a sort of tangent, two short books:
The War of Art (forgeting the art part, it addresses that voice you hear (the author calls it 'Resistance'. It shows you a bit how to overcome it.
The Obstacle is the Way: can't recall the exact passage or lesson so I may be wrong. Perhaps someone else will offer better insight. But regardless, short book worth reading earlier in life (as a student) than later.
Good luck man!
First time posting here as well so here it goes.
Dishes: when done at night, feel sink with soapy water and submerge all dirty dishes. When you come bk from work cleaning them will b easy. Hardly any scrubbing as water left everything soft.
For weekends, plan the day before what u want to do the next day. Do not go to bed without clear idea of what u want to accomplish.
When u set to do something when waking up on weekends, or upon getting home from work, don't sit down! Go work on whatever u say needs to be done.
When organizing your living space, don't do it by area (bedroom, living room, etc) but by item type (books, clothing). The system, coincidentally originated in Japan, is explained in detail in the book
The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing
Here is a post I made about a few self improvement audio books on youtube: post on r/selfimprovement I haven't listened through all of those myself though and I think the only one that is really related to discipline is The Power of Habit.
I really also liked The 4 hour workweek by Tim Ferris. Also not very specific to discipline but it might at least give you some motivation to build the lifestyle you want and provide some ideas.
Tim Ferris also has a podcast: The Tim Ferris Show. He interviews people (usually some kind of high achiever) and talks about their habits, life hacks, influences and so on.
I'm a one-man indie that taught myself Android programming and developed EveryDayHabit. It's not game-like at all so probably not what OP is looking for, just a simple habit tracker, but any feature suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
In my experience, laziness is downwards spiral. I had to pull myself out of this spiral a couple of times. In a state of laziness, hard work, exercise,... seems to be horrible and you keep making rationalisations to not do it, whatever it is.
Things that helped me to deal with laziness:
1) Realise you are in such a downwards spiral, understand the consequences of not changing this behavior.
2) Put yourself in environments where you have to do it: study in a library with friends; Give money to a relative every day you don't exercise, you know what I mean.
3) The hardest thing about not being lazy is just the initial shift in gears, once you have some momentum going it is easy to keep going. Try not to lose it.
4) Mindfulness: become aware of the moment when you decide not to do it and the negative emotions you have regarding the things you have to do, often they just dissapear when you become aware.
5) Don't judge yourself to hard, this can cause the opposite effect of changing you behavior. Everyone at some point is lazy.
6) Try to own the next thing: if you don't want to exercise, just tell yourself, I am just going for a 2 minute walk, once your outside, you realise it is not that bad and probably start running anyways. If not at least you went outside for 2 minutes. If you don't want to do that, just put on your running shoes, etc. Anything is better than nothing and you will probably do more.
7) Lastly, there is an app that helped me a lot with studying: productivity challange app timer (link below). Keeping track off your actual productivity made me wanting to break my previous ranking and during the examinations I pulled of 80+ hour study weeks, which I never did before.
Hope this helps.
Take one step at a time. Baby steps. I've been there, probably still am but I'm making huge progress. I would suggest The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. It is a fantastic reading. It changed my perspective on lots of things. Books and I don't get along either. There is an audiobook version. I listen to it while I run in the mornings or go on a bike ride. I also closed Facebook.
Don't worry about gaining 1lb. We are always +-2 lbs. Are you dehydrated? you'll weight ~2lbs less. Are you hydrated? you'll weight ~2 more lbs. You get the idea.
Regarding school, you've pointed out that you don't remember elementary concepts. Go back and revisit them. Don't like books? There's youtube. There are free MIT classes online. Hope everything goes well for you!
> Bradford J. Brown, Yuko Kashiwagi, William H. Barrett & Eisuke Sasagawa.
Google book link here
Was grief stricken and really quite depressed and trying to pull myself out of that. A young personal trainer from California posted to this subreddit offering to be a buddy so I accepted as a twelve week project. Booked some leave from work and a holiday at the end of the twelve weeks and tried to work towards that by eating healthily, getting to sleep early, doing gentle exercise, and cleaning.
Just checking in with someone every day really helped. Had to answer three questions: what was one thing that had gone well towards my goals, what was one thing that hadn't, and what was one commitment I was making for the next day. Took a few minutes each day to answer. Also had to share with him and maintain myfitnesspal and the site chains. When I had bad days his compassion was much appreciated. For some reason this really worked for me, and I had fewer and fewer really bad days. Recommend this highly.
Oh yeah that Loop Habit Tracker is the best. Simple, but has enough statistics etc and does not send your data to whoever, no special requirements needed.
Maybe start here? /r/theXeffect. Simple small steps build up. As your better habits and goals get established it gets easier to take more on.
Personally, I set small goals, celebrate small victories and do my best not to look back. I also recommend The Power of Habit, the audiobook was a much better experience than trying to read it because I could just let the info soak in.
Edit: I listed the wrong sub.
Surprised nobody's recommended Napoleon Hill. Most of the Productivity/self-help works written in the last 70 years are watered down and wholly derivative of Think and Grow Rich.
I can't recommend Tony Robbins. He's great if you need sunshine blown up your ass. But he's more marketing than anything.
Look in to Brian Tracy also. I've probably read and listened to half a dozen of his books. Pick one or two. But after that he just repeats himself. What he's got to say is great, there's just not that much of it.