As a writer, I can attest to laziness being the main culprit behind my lack of productivity. Most pieces of writing advice I read say it’s imperative to write on a daily basis even if it’s nothing more than jotting down a few lines in a journal. But laziness holds me back from even doing that much some days.
It feels so good to come home after a long day of work and plop down on the couch to watch my favorite television shows and bury myself in social media. Why must laziness feel so good. It should at least hurt a little.
There are lots of productive things I should be doing with my free time, but laziness keeps me from doing so many of them. It saps my motivation. Laziness is comparable to a disease. It slowly eats away at my core and leaves me a shell of my former self. It’s the ultimate dream killer.
I must kill this laziness seed before it grows any further.
One of my biggest challenges as a blogger is my lack of consistency. It’s what comes to mind whenever I think of why my blog isn’t as successful as it should be. There are periods when I feel like a writing machine and periods when I rarely write at all.
Let’s look at the following table which shows the number of posts I published per year, along with the corresponding amount of views, since I started this blog in 2011.
We can see that 2012 was the high watermark with 2013 and 2014 following next in line. 2015 is interesting since it had the lowest number of posts, yet the number of views was still up from what I reached in 2016. 2014 had the second least amount of posts, but the second highest number of views. 2011 is noteworthy because I started this blog in September of that year. I was writing like a man possessed, although the quality of my work wasn’t close to what it is today.
Just imagine if I had maintained the same level of productivity I displayed in 2012. It’s very possible that I would have come close to hitting 100,000 views by now.
I try not to get too caught up in the numbers because the real measure of my blog’s success is how I feel about everything I write and the feedback I receive from my readers. On the other hand, it’s nice to keep track of my measurable progress.
One of the most amazing periods of growth in my blog, and in my writing life, occurred during the summer 2015 when I posted daily from June 28-July 7. To this day it remains the longest stretch of uninterrupted blogging I’ve ever done. Not only did I develop into an all-around better writer, but I gained many new followers during this period. After all this success, guess what I did?
I went cold turkey and didn’t write again until exactly one month later. Why would I stop after going on such a roll?
I stopped because I had a hard time feeling like I could live up to the pressure I imposed on myself. I thought that I couldn’t write something that lived up to my readers’ expectations of what they had come to expect from me.
2016 was my worst year of blogging. Not only did I go months without posting anything, but the lag in writing made it that much more difficult for me to produce quality content when I was ready to resume. There were days when I felt like a zombie heading to the keyboard.
Just like laziness, a lack of consistency is a surefire way to halt your goals. We all have what may appear to be valid reasons for not maintaining consistency in certain areas we’re looking to grow in.
In some ways, giving up on your goals after you start gaining traction is worse than not pursuing them at all. You’ve already proven you have what it takes, so why stop?
Just keep going.
2017 is here and I’m officially making a dent into the new year by writing this very post. What’s so special about this, you might ask.
The answer is that I woke up at 5:03 am to write it.
This may not sound like anything unusual, but I consider it be a breakthrough in my growth as a writer.
I tend to wake up a good two hours early on some mornings. When this happens I normally go straight to my phone to browse social media before forcing myself back to sleep until the alarm rings. Instead of rolling back under the covers I decided to get up and write.
I looked laziness right in the face and didn’t allow it deprive me of my valuable writing time.
Don’t let laziness hold you back from reaching your true potential in whatever goals you decide to pursue this year.
Have you ever quit anything you started and later regretted it? What was it?
Yes. I can write an entire post based on all the writing opportunities I’ve squandered over the years.
I quit my position as news editor of my student newspaper, The A&T Register, during my junior year in college. The following year I was invited back to serve as copy-desk chief and quit after a few weeks.
Shortly after graduation one of my former classmates recruited me to write for a startup publication geared toward female athletes. I initially agreed, but then got cold feet and declined. Below is an email I received after informing them of my decision.
In 2012 I started a project on the top 10o WWE matches of all time. I interviewed some notable wrestling writers and got a fair amount of research done before quitting. Ditto for a article on the history of pro wrestling in North Carolina.
I quit my church newsletter and two unpaid writing gigs in 2014.
I gave up on every writing endeavor because of laziness. Do I regret it? Of course. I shudder to imagine how great of a writer I could’ve been by now had I not given up so easily.
This blog is an opportunity to prove that I can do something without quitting.
Can you feel the magic in the air? It’s January 1, 2014 and it means that New Year’s resolution fever is running rampant . Whether it’s slimming down a few pounds or saving more money, now is the time to set the wheels in motion for the things you wish to accomplish by December 31.
While some people tend to downplay the importance of New Year’s resolutions, I tend to err on the side of optimism. I would rather start the year with anticipation rather than believing that nothing good will come. I just have a feeling that 2014 will be my best year of my life yet, if for no other reason than the fact that I will marry the love of my life in three months.
Of course, there are areas of my life that I really desire to see some change in. Here are a few of the resolutions I will be working on throughout the year:
Operating in more faith- Faith is more than just hoping for the best. It’s standing on God’s word and doing the corresponding actions in order to get the end result. Operating in faith will require me to leave my comfort zone and do things I have never done before.
Being more assertive-I need to mean what I say and say what I mean in all situations. I need to be bold and not back down from expressing my beliefs on any particular matter. Confidence plays a big part in this process. The days of being a passive bystander are over.
Eliminating laziness- I can speak from experience that laziness is a silent killer. In order to reach my goals, I will need to get off the couch and put down the remote control (and Facebook too). I refuse to allow laziness to stop me in 2014.
Developing close male friendships- I love my fiancée and my female friends with all my heart, but I’m seriously lacking in the male friendship department. It’s not that I don’t have any good male friends, but there is a big disparity in the amount of time and effort I put into those relationships as opposed to the women. I blame it on the fact that God has placed so many awesome female figures in my life!
Forming a closer connection with my dad- Don’t get it twisted. My dad and I have a very good relationship. He’s always been in the household and has helped raise me into the man I am today. He’s a great example of a husband, father and man of God. Since I will soon be married, I wish to bond with him in a more significant manner during these last couple of months under his roof.
These are four huge resolutions I plan on attacking full force. What are yours?
Just remember that no matter how difficult they may seem, they can be done.
Hi everyone. I hope every mother had a great Mother’s Day. Mothers truly make the world go round and it is my sincerest wish that you all were treated to a day of luxury on last Sunday. Even after children reach adulthood a mother’s job never ends.
This has been a good week so far. Not a ton of action, but it’s been enjoyable nonetheless. I’m officially in the midst of the “Jeuron Dove Farewell Tour.” Or at least that’s what I envision this week becoming. If you read my latest post then you know I was blessed with a new job. I start next Monday and I made it very clear to my boss at my part-time job that I would likely not be returning. Even though my new job is a weekday 9-5, I could still choose to work Fridays and weekends. After thinking it over I decided it would be in my best interest to leave entirely. During my last stint at A&T I felt like I didn’t have a life outside of work. I want to be able to work just ONE job and enjoy the fruits of my labor. I truly believe some people work so much that they don’t enjoy life. It’s no need in making all the money in the world if you never have the time and energy to enjoy it with the ones you care about.
I’ve been saying my goodbyes at work all week long. I’m not too big on goodbyes so this is especially weird for me. It’s been very gratifying to see all the positive attitudes my coworkers have shown as I’ve shared the news with them. They are so happy to see me move on to something better and the same sentiment has even been expressed by customers.
As I was leaving out of work Monday I was telling another of my close coworkers about my last day and a customer overheard us. As I was walking to my car that customer stopped and asked me about my job and congratulated me. It always feels good to know you’re appreciated by the people you work with and work to serve. I work today through Friday and hopefully I’ll get the chance to see the remaining coworkers I haven’t had a chance to say goodbye to.
This is a huge shift for me personally. In times past I always had the mindset of hanging onto Food Lion for as long as I possibly could even if I had another job. But this time around it was quite easy to make the decision. I’m not as worried as I was in years past to leave since I still live in Reidsville and will continue to shop at that store so it’s not like I will never see my friends again. However, it will be a big adjustment to not see them on a daily basis, especially since my latest stint (since my last job ended in July) at Food Lion has been the one where I’ve developed the closest relationships with my coworkers.
A lot of thoughts have been swirling through my head in anticipation of next week. For my future success I really need to do two things: ask questions and keep writing.
A big part of the reason I failed in my previous role at A&T (aside from my boss being nuts) was because I developed a fear of asking for help. My boss would make me feel stupid for asking a question, yet she always encouraged me to ask them if I didn’t understand anything. It got to the point where I didn’t bother asking for help with anything because I figured I’d mess things up one way or another. I know that may appear to be a strange mindset to have, but working for a person who has zero confidence in you will do that.
I won’t fall into that same trap this time around. If I don’t understand something I will seek out help and do my best to understand the situation so that a similar circumstance won’t occur. I don’t believe there is anything wrong with making mistakes. It only becomes a problem when you make the same ones repeatedly.
I will also continue to write vigorously. I was by no means doing as much personal writing as I am now (blogging, submitting works to publications and entering contests) during my last two stints of full-time employment. In fact, I don’t think I did any. My old mindset during that timeframe was that I worked my 40 hours a week and felt like I was entitled to do nothing but relax once I got home. Making that mistake again could be fatal to my progress as a writer. Regardless of how intense my job may get, I must always continue to keep a regular schedule of writing. My writing really took off in quality and popularity over the last nine months and I would hate to lose my edge and see my blog fall into oblivion as a result of laziness.