In-house staff like to put off undesirable tasks. Everyone does. So a simple technique described in Law Practice, Sept./Oct. 2010 at 12, appeals to me, Set a wind-up egg timer to ring at 25 minutes: a chunk of time called a pomodoro.” While it ticks away work on one and only one task. When saved by the bell, reward yourself with a three-minute break, then start another pomodoro push. The article emphasizes that you “Don’t interrupt a pomodoro unless the building’s on fire.” The psychology of finite chunks of concentrated attention followed by a respite makes huge sense. Aside from this handy technique, the article says to understand why you put off work, develop routines, and eliminate distractions.
By nature not a procrastinator, I immediately looked to see what wisdom lurks in the stream of previous blog posts (See my post of June 21, 20016: five life-hacking ideas to get the boulder moving; Nov. 6, 2006: skiving at work; Feb. 25, 2008: attorneys and wasted time; 60-90 minutes a day; Aug. 21, 2008: main leisure time-wasters for workers; Nov. 17, 2008: procrastination and its adverse effects; Nov. 2, 2009: goofing off at work; and Feb. 15, 2010: commitment contracts to combat delay.).