Later … i.e. Never

Later ... i.e. Never

I procrastinate about things I don’t like doing, like housework, and things I love doing, like hobbies, travelling, watching a movie at the cinema and more… always thinking I’ll have more time later. But in reality, there generally is no magical time in the future when we will suddenly have much more time and feel like doing all these things we’ve been putting off.

Here are my tips for dealing with the procrastination beast:

  1. Spend time doing things you enjoy (guilt-free play)
  2. Get rid of as many things from your to-do list that you don’t want to do as possible (outsource it, put it on someone else’s list, admit you’re never going to do it and just cross it off..)
  3. Pick one thing from that list, and break it down into underwhelming steps that will get it done
  4. Tackle a tiny, underwhelming step each day until that thing is done

Here are some thing that have helped me with understanding and minimising procrastination:

Donuts are good for your soul

Donuts are good for your soul

In honour of finally getting a real donut store in downtown Beijing, it’s a donut theme today.

I’ve been a donut lover as long as I can remember, but the donut lust hit me hard when I moved to Beijing and found it lacking in donuts. In Melbourne, my hometown, my favourite donut is the hot cinnamon donut from Donut King. Hot jam donuts from a van are also generally excellent, as is the chocolate jam ball donut (chocolate icing and sprinkles on top, strawberry jam in the middle).

It seems our donut tastes down under are under appreciated in the rest of the world, so I’ve broadened my horizons to things like maple old-fashioned, and glazed donuts when I am lucky enough to travel to a donut-loving city, or through a well-stocked donut-loving airport.

If you live in a lucky donut town, don’t take it for granted, go out there and give the donuts the love they deserve today!! I’m gonna have a donut feast to celebrate the goodness that comes from fried dough and a lot of sugar at the new Wangfujing Dunkin Donuts!

Image credit: Copyright free from Flickr

Why You Should Sleep When You’re Tired

Sleep when you're tired

I’ve been thinking about sleep a lot lately…got a baby on the way, and I’m conscious this is my last good chance for sleep for a while. I’ve always loved sleeping, even as a baby, my mum said I would always snuggle down and make a contented sound when I got put to bed.

The thing is, everything seems so much harder when you’re tired – decisions are more difficult, worries seem bigger, and bodies get clumsier. After a good sleep, things usually seem at least a little better.

And that’s one of the things I love about working in China…putting your head down on your desk and having a nap in the middle of it all is generally very well accepted here. And according to various research, a good 20-30 minute power nap can help improve alertness and memory retention, and improve performance.