Anne, Eight in the Morning

Deadlines are for the Birds – Procrastinating is for Losers

Deadlines don’t bother me at all. Never have. For a writer of course this is a good thing because ‘Submission Deadline’ in bold text is real and for those not bold and brave, it can become scary like a rabid monster who will eat your insides and then your outsides late in the night when you’re trying to sleep.

Some people, like this old friend of mine, suggest that not liking deadlines and having a real fear of them only happens to procrastinators.

I fully agree. We were discussing this just yesterday, when out of nowhere she suddenly mentioned that I too sometimes turn into a procrastinator, but only when I hear/see the word ‘Deadline.’

Out of nowhere!

This shocked me so much, I almost accidentally knocked her coffee cup out of her hands on purpose.

“It’s some sort of illness you pick up. Like sneezing when you have the flu.” She said. “You know you have a deadline, so you’re reacting like you always do. Which is, badly.”

“Don’t be idiotic.” I told her. “I have a deadline, but I’m fine. However, right now all my handbags are not hanging properly in my closet. I have to sort them out before a faux brand avalanche buries pathetically few originals.”

“You’re procrastinating.” She said. “It’s obvious.”

“You’re over analyzing.” I replied, noting that my shoes were not placed in their usual I-should-be-able-to-find-them-if-I-am-blindfolded order.

“It’s what you do when you know you have a deadline.” She insisted.

“Screw you.” I said. “I did relationship, engagement, marriage, and two kids, and all in just 18 months. That’s not procrastinator behaviour. I’m totally a doer.”

“So, do your work and meet your upcoming deadline.” She said, with the smugness she inherits from some British ancestor.

Of course, I later realized there was no getting around the fact that I did have to start focusing, because I did have a deadline to meet. So, I rushed right to it, after I spent a couple of hours sorting out my shoes, then cleaning out all my handbags and ending up with a stash of loose change, a few sticky mints, some expired Panadol Extras, a couple of tattered notebooks, and two packages of paper soap.

And, of course the still-there deadline.

Not panicking at all, I called my husband. “How many days till November 9th?” I asked in a low, calm voice.

“Why? What’s wrong? You sound hysterical. Are you OK?” He asked.

“My deadline is November 9th” I said really, really, slowly and with more emphasis (because clearly he does not know how to read voice.) “How many days is that from right this second?”

“You have time.” He said, in that annoyingly pacifying tone he sometimes adopts from my mother. “You also have a calendar and are capable of counting.” He added, showing me how he could also sound like his own mother.

His point was the same as mine though, because as much as November 9th was around the corner, all I really needed to do was edit a piece I’d been working on for a while, make some changes and basically polish it up. No biggie.

So, I opened up my Word document, and went to get a coffee refill to fuel me on. Then, I cooked dinner, did the dishes, ran out to do errands and got back in time to read my piece. – It seemed OK, but needed some minor changes of course. I set about that task by opening a new Word document because obviously I couldn’t submit the piece I’d already written.

“Why not?” The huz wanted to know later in the evening.

“Well, for one thing I can write a better piece than the one I already have.” I said. “And, second of all, I have plenty of time to do that.”

“You’re right.” He said, which made me go (and quite calmly) “What do you mean I’m right? Did you also think my first piece wasn’t good enough and if so then why didn’t you say something before, and are you trying to ruin my life, is that why you married me?”

“Stop dodging and write.” He said.

I ignored him and got back to work because that’s what I was going to do anyway before he interrupted me. – About an hour later he interrupted me again, and with a rude “How’s it going?”

“Just fine.” I said. “But, did you know I do not have a single Michael Learns to Rock song on my 90’s music playlist?”

Him: Huh?

Me: Weird right? And, to think that music was….

“What are you doing?” He interrupted (rudely) which startled me so much, I accidentally closed my YouTube page and then had to reload it all over again.

“Not a single MLTR song.” I told him. “Which is really not on considering MLTR songs were pretty much a part of pop music back in the day. At least one song should be on my 90’s playlist.”

Him: Which you’re updating right now?

Me: It wouldn’t be fair to Michael if I didn’t.

Him: Jesus!

Me: Jesus would have already had MLTR on his playlist. He was cool like that, and that’s why MLTR wrote him a song.

Him: This is the worst case of deadline denial I’ve ever seen.

Me: Don’t be negative. I got it covered. All I need is to think up a new piece and write it out. I write fast. I’m a fast thinker-writer-doer.

Him: Don’t forget ‘talker.’

Me: That makes me more like Jesus. He thought, he wrote, he talked, he did. Jesus was a doer. He didn’t sit in a corner crying “I have a deadline! I have a deadline!” He just went out there and did stuff and lots of it was miracles, and in the end He did what He was there to do all along.

Him: You need to start writing, but mostly, you need to start shutting up all this crazy talk.

Me: I’m adding MLTR’s song for Jesus to my playlist, then I’m going to write my new piece.

So, he got all nosey and asked “What’s the piece about?” as if all this talk about Jesus had suddenly given me divine inspiration or something. It’s like I’m not even allowed to take time and brainstorm in my own home anymore. Naturally I ignored him, (yet again) and got down to business. I’d noticed my playlist didn’t even have a Backstreet Boys song on it, and how is that acceptable for mainstream 90’s tunes, right?

I got to searching out a song from The Backstreet Boys when the huz went all “What’s the song MLTR did for Jesus?”

Me: The Actor

Him: What? Are you serious? Doesn’t he sing “And, I don’t even have my own car” in that? How the hell is that about Jesus?

Me: Jesus didn’t have his own car. Poor guy didn’t even have his own donkey. The song fits.

Him: You have 19 days till your deadline.

It wouldn’t have killed him to tell me that when I’d called in the afternoon, right? Everyone needs a reminder. It meant I had to concentrate on getting to work and with no more valid reasons why I shouldn’t, except that it was time for bed and people are always telling me how important those eight hours of rest are.

However, when it got to 8am today, I sat down to write, and with nothing else on my mind but writing. This is what I like about me, I know the dangers of procrastination and I never succumb to them, and especially not when I have a writing deadline.

IĀ  was so pleased with myself, I opened my last night’s blank Word document and began to write.

And, that’s how you all got this blog post.

Xoxo

Anne

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16 thoughts on “Deadlines are for the Birds – Procrastinating is for Losers”

  1. šŸ™‚ always a big smile on my face the moment i read a new post from you.

    I have always hated deadlines and have never bothered to care about them. But, I always try to start as soon as possible and end it soon as possible and then review it about a billion times . šŸ™‚

    Like

  2. Hahahaha that’s hilarious and well Anne I m totally like that. I think I am kind of procrastinator. Loved how u switched to YouTube instead of writing coz that’s something I myself do. So what abt that piece? Did u finish it? Can we expect FAO soon? R these many questions?
    love u Anne love u a lot!

    Like

  3. Omg!!!!!!! You did not.-Yes you did. lol!!!!

    Deadline denial.. Again.

    ; p

    N I Luv the term you coined btw. Perfect.

    Same here* points to self* (deadline in 24h n I don’t even know the question set. #mehhhh )

    # snickers

    Something I read a few years back grew on me -something about ‘being at my best when m stressed..”??

    Which is what I tell myself until THE Deadline, THE WORK, THE END OF THE WORLD hit me n I start flipping out

    * giggles*

    That’s kind of how the bakery happened btw. N the ring came from a pharmacy.

    #VERY TRUE. * sheepish*

    Mmmmmmuwah…

    Cheers & love & fun!!

    (It’s the festive season n I can see Xmas around the corner.. * sighs* …Holidays… Yay!!!!!)

    * smoooooooooch*

    xx

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  4. but is soooo good to procrastinate! i am a fervent admirer ,and religiously practitioner of this habit:)))
    seams your conversation with your husband is the inspiration for ”Pillow talk”,i miss them!

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  5. Hahaha your posts are hilarious, made my day. Sorry for dropping in after ages, but really work is a bitch, plus have so many things to do for the baby, you have no idea. I have started the act of procrastinating too, but in my case, I know I have a deadline, but its a movable deadline….I mean which baby ever comes on the due date, right? Damn really now I am scared I don’t even know anything about handling a baby…wow thats what mothers are for I guess, I cant wait until she comes here next Monday. And then, there’s baby shower, and I am lagging behind on all prep for it, so see this one definitely has a deadline, but still I am procrastinating. Theres the baby room to decorate, baby stuff to assemble, and in general keep myself sane and healthy during all this madness….and thats so damn hard. So I understand where you are coming from, definitely understand. btw You would let us know if you are publishing something or not on Nov 9th, right? please do.

    For now, bye from a crazy-hormonal-anxious-who doesnt have a clue about babies- baby mama to be.
    Pankti

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Anne I lost my comment halfway through. Now my thumbs are threatening to go on strike until my 60th birthday if I don’t stop typing on my phone right now.
    so will wait until I can get to a computer.

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    1. I had to read this blog post all over again because I was laughing too hard the first time to be able to see through my tears…

      Procrastinator? You? Nah! I don’t believe that. You were prompt in calling the huz to find out how many days to Nov 9th, weren’t you? Did you waste time thinking about disturbing him at work? No. Did you put it off until he came home? Nooo.
      So there you are. Not a procrastinator.

      And you’re right. JC would so have loved MLTR and their song for him. And he would also have added the Kerbside Kids, sorry Backroom Boys, song to his 90s playlist. So, there you go, husband.

      I am so so proud of you, Anne Dias. You did not procrastinate AT ALL and we got this head-bangingly hilarious blog post.
      Thank you. Muahs.

      PS: “…relationship, engagement, marriage, and two kids, and all in just 18 months”?? I’m exhausted just reading about it.

      Like

  7. You had me cringing when I read this! Sometimes its not good to see oneself in a mirror (minus the interesting conversation with hub dear). At least someone is aware of a deadline…in my case no such luck! It is so easy to bury oneself in immediate small tasks which suddenly aquire greater importance & interest, specially when one is a freelancer! A 9-5 job seems so much more organised at times!

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  8. I TOTALLY AGREE with everything your friend said and your huz.
    You are the biggest procrastinator when it comes to writing deadlines… in fact you spend the greater part of the procrastinator time torturing me and whipping me on chat to FINNISH MY WORK and sending me on guilt trips and of mazes of psycho analysis and then don’t finish your stuff.

    Now shut up and start writing… NOT blog posts but THAT. And you damn well know what i mean by THAT.

    hmmmmmmmph :@

    Liked by 1 person

  9. haha….even I am like that, i always wait the day before my deadline for the assingnments and projects to start doing it.. when i was in school there was a chapter about this writer , in it he says that he gets the incentive to write something thinking about the deadlines and when his wife reminds him of it and his wife always puts together the pieces he writes in different papers…

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  10. Anne,
    I love these 8 am posts and the conversations with your huz.It starts my day with a bright smile and a light heart. You are simply a cool lady. Now don’t delay writing anymore.
    I love to finish the work before deadlines. My classmates hated me for this irritating habit. when I don’t finish work on time I get panic attacks. But that last minute rush is really something I agree but I dont wait for it because I have bp issues..:-)

    Like

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