I have an open packet of snacks next to me, my feet are up on the recliner and I’m still in my PJ’s at noon captivated by the fictional lives of characters on the screen in front of me. Whilst lurking in the wings is an ever growing pile of receipts that need to be filed, mundane tasks needing to be done, phone calls to make and I put all that aside to binge watch on Netflix or Stan (might I add Stan has some pretty cool shows too!).
I know the more I sit there and watch, the less motivated I get to do the big list of tasks I meticulously recounted in my head in the early hours of the morning when thinking ‘tomorrow is going to be my big day and I can’t wait for it to be morning so I can get started.’ Morning comes and the vicarious escape into the fictional world of others is the easy route as I don’t have to act on all the tasks I planned to do. It is especially hard as a lot of my work is done at home with the many distractions that come with this. The habit of binge watching with Netflix and Stan is my absolute Kryptonite. It contributes to my motivational slump and that feeling of being overwhelmed as I have avoided what I should have been doing.
So how do you take back control when you are faced with something more exciting then the tasks that need to be done. For starters, I know that Netflix and Stan is a preferred activity for me and like chocolate, I need to moderate my use. Rather than saying it is not helping me and making me unmotivated, I am flipping my viewing habits and this is one way how:
Use your Kryptonite as an incentive after you complete a non-preferred task. Modify this to how you feel. Some days or when you are reducing your indulgence, you might do a 1:1 (1 non-preferred task followed by 1 preferred activity). An example of this for me might be document my receipts in receipts app and file them for tax then I can watch a portion e.g 20 minutes or a whole episode e.g 40 minutes.
After this, you could do 2:1 (2 non-preferred tasks followed by 1 preferred activity). Then repeat this cycle to get your tasks done, or mix it up to suit your mood or level of tolerance of non-preferred tasks.
Free to air TV is also great as commercials are a great incentive to do short bursts of non-preferred tasks e.g exercises, folding washing, writing to-do’s for tomorrow, shopping list, etc. This breaks up into smaller chunks and helps you conquer that motivational slump by starting small.
I am a strong believer that if your interest is not harmful to your health, it can be channelled to be a positive thing and can help you make small changes to overcome that first step towards being more productive. For me, when in balance, Netflix and Stan are fantastic services to bring you joy, and chillax time.
So like Superman, if you have a Kryptonite that is being more destructive than helpful in your life, think how you can take back control.