I do everything too slowly

Discussion in 'Self Improvement' started by mr. eleven, Jun 8, 2019.

  1. mr. eleven

    mr. eleven Fapstronaut

    Hey ladies and gentlemen,

    today I realized that I want to change something. I want to become faster at everything.

    Example: I need 30 minutes to take a (warm) shower . What a waste of time. Since I have cold showers I became much faster of course. But towel myself, cleaning the shower, cream, shaving and so on needs still so much time.

    It is just an example. I need too much time for everything. I do not know why. I do not know how to change, yet.

    Any suggestions?

    btw.: I was using the search for similar threads but I did not find something on this issue. I am sorry if such a thread already exists and I would be thankful for a hint to find the original thread if it exists. ;)
  2. properWood

    properWood Fapstronaut

    You mention very little of your lifestyle, so it's gonna be a challenge to give proper advice, but here's what I do:

    Gym mornings:
    - Wake up at 6, drink a glass of water, jump into day clothes
    - Pick up gym back, drive to gym, stay there one hour (even if sometimes I'm not doing much, the act of showing up increases self-trust)
    - Being pumped up, I jump into the gym shower, it takes less than 10 minutes to wash and towel down
    - 15 minute grooming in the locker room and I leave for work at about 7:45

    Non-gym mornings (on rare occasions):
    - wake up at 6, drink a glass of water
    - jump into the shower for 7-10 minutes
    - grooming for 15 minutes
    - leave for work at 6:30

    My work arrival time may differ, my wake up time is the same, but I make sure that I take the shower as short time before leaving home/gym as possible.

    If however, you have no work to be at in the morning, then try to develop a reason to leave home early in the morning for a couple of weeks, even if only for walks. That way you'll associate wake up with shower with leaving home. Hope it helps!
  3. mr. eleven

    mr. eleven Fapstronaut

    Thanks for your reply. To do something under time pressure seems to be a possible approach and when I have time pressure I am faster, too. I mean the moments when I have no time pressure. And it is not only the grooming.

    Meanwhile I had some thoughts about it. Perhaps I miss some awareness or an aim sometimes.

    I will try this: Have a plan for each day and before every task I do I pinpoint when it should be done.
  4. I keep a tight schedule each and every day. Even my day off is pretty well scheduled. Always having something positive and productive to do has been a help in my own recovery. It also helps keep me moving throughout the day as there is always the next task to attend to.

    Wishing you much success!
  5. WalkingForward

    WalkingForward Fapstronaut

    I have the same problem. And I would guess the reason for you is the same as for me, being constantly lost in thoughts.

    We need to practice our focus and ability to concentrate. Mindfulness meditation is one aspect, also trying to be present in the moment throughout the day.

    Preferably focus on one task at a time instead of multitasking. We need to practice our ability to stay focused.
  6. koolpal

    koolpal Fapstronaut

    Sounds like the Pomodoro technique would work for you.

    It forces me to get stuff done quicker at work & home.

    Instead of learning how to finish a task, I learned how to focus, prioritize, and when to stop. Because there are other tasks to do.

    Hope that helps.
  7. mr. eleven

    mr. eleven Fapstronaut

    How do you plan your day? Do you sit down at the beginning of the week with you calendar and write down what you want to do? For me this means always trouble. There always occur issues that seem to be more important. And then I am completely out of my plan and I want to do stuff the other day and my plan is for nothing. Sometimes the reason why it does not work is simply laziness and excuses. Often I also underestimate how exhausting a task is or that it needs more time than I planned. The problems which occur are sometime similar to the pomodoro problems.

    I tried the Pomodoro technique. For me it does not work. Or let us say: I could not adopt it usefully yet. The tasks I am working at are often too long for only one Pomodoro. And then when the break comes I am in the flow and do not want to interrupt. And when I start a break I am too lazy to start again. I need much longer breaks.

    Yes, sounds familiar to me.

    Thank you for your well-intentioned advice. I am absolutely with you that we should train our focus and ability to concentrate. I never really followed meditaion and today I spend some time on research at the internet on it. As i understood the idea of meditation is to completely clean the mind. In my opinion it would be even a better training to fill the mind with meaningful and good thoughts and deeply think about them. This would train to handle thoughts and would help to control them. If you clean your mind and if you make it empty, you train nothing. You make it just easy for a moment and you loose your own willpower. In my opinion meditation seems like training in the gym without weight.

    I agree, good approach to take one task after the other one. Now we have to put it into practice and there I struggle.
    properWood likes this.
  8. properWood

    properWood Fapstronaut

    If I may answer about the scheduling aspect. It sounds complicated, but bear with me.

    You have two types of activities you want to take into account:

    a) routines that help you automate parts of your life
    b) tasks that you have to do that cannot be automated

    a) is following morning and evening routines, waking up at the same time, eating at the same times during the day, spending less time choosing clothes by arranging them the night before etc. Anything that you anyway have to do every day should be automated as much as possible. Set a day in the week when you vacuum the house, replace bedsheets, clean the toilet. Set a day in the month when you replace water filter, kitchen sponges etc. whatever you think needs replacement/cleaning on a monthly basis. It doesn't have to be an exact amount of time, just think of it as... today I clean the flat. That afternoon, I replace those items etc.

    b) can also be split in a few smaller types of tasks:

    b1) important and urgent
    b2) important and not urgent
    b3) not important and urgent
    b4) not important and not urgent

    Please note that YOU define what is important, no one else. Don't let other people say "hey, this is important", but rather you decide whether it's important to do that task or not. Start with small ones at first, to build confidence, then move on to larger issues. In the end, b3 and b4 should never be touched, those tasks that are not important should not be dealt with because... they are not important to YOU.

    Further more, you have two more types of tasks in the important categories, sorted by predictability:
    b i) tasks that I can predict when to fulfil
    b ii) tasks that I cannot predict when to fulfil

    b i) Doing your tax return declaration, for example, is a task you can predict and schedule. On Saturday I will sit between 2 and 4 pm and will collect all the relevant documents, create the draft. Next Saturday, schedule the same time frame to submit the papers.

    Or, car is broken down, has a funny noise. This is a task that's both important and urgent, plus you can predict when to fulfil it. Call the dealer and agree on a time and date to fix the car.

    Or, if it's something in the house, like fixing that damn paint chip on the bath tub that you've been putting off since months! Break it down in simpler tasks: go to DIY store, you can schedule it before groceries (before, because your groceries might melt in the car while you look for the paint repair set), then schedule an afternoon when you focus solely on repairing the chipped paint.

    b ii) If another task comes along, say friends calling you to go for a beer, YOU are the one to decide what's important: fixing the bath tub or getting smashed with friends. No one else can decide. If it's important for you to be with your friends, then that's an unpredictable task that you find is important to you.

    Also under b ii) is when the boiler breaks down vs fixing the said bath tub. I gather it becomes rather obvious that both are important tasks, but the priority of fixing the boiler will be higher than the one for fixing the bath tub.

    What I use:
    - a) - smartphone/computer calendar for monthly and weekly automated tasks; daily automated tasks are scheduled by alarm, when to wake up. I also schedule contract expirations and birthdays.
    - b) - said smartphone/computer calendar for dentist appointments, therapy sessions, car visits, dinners with friends (always always scheduled in advance!) You can do this on a weekly basis, or whenever the appointment is set.

    Every week I sit for 10-15 minutes and go through the next 4 weeks, identify whether a contract will expire soon (do I close the contract?), identify the birthdays, I look at the week ahead and see "ah, on Tuesday I have the dentist appointment so I will inform Monday the boss that I will arrive late at work".

    Most important and one thing I failed at dramatically: leave a lot of free time for yourself. You don't need to have a full calendar the whole day, all time slots booked. Leave a lot of time for your leisure, what inspires you (walks, reading, truly unscheduled time).

    One last thing: don't be too demanding on it. You will fail, we all fail. Fail graciously, pick up where you left. Yeah, you skipped replacing the bedsheets this week, but that's fine, replace them next week. No one will die and over time it will become easier and easier.
    mr. eleven likes this.
  9. For me, it's all about priorities. I have thought about what my priorities are and I know what is highest priority and what is lower. My schedule is based on this. Highest priority items go in first and do not get violated. Lower priority items go in around the edges of these higher priority items and are free to be violated as needed. Over time, my priorities may shift, and so I adapt my schedule accordingly.

    I budget my time the way I budget my money -- every dollar accounted for. I bring in x and y goes out, and they must always balance to zero. The hours of each day are the same. I have x number of hours and I will spend them doing y -- and every hour must be accounted for.

    I have learned to do this out of necessity. Unscheduled down time was always a big issue for me, and those are the times I would return to PMO. So, now, I do not allow myself to have unscheduled down time. This may seem severe, but I am committed to no PMO ever again, and this is one tool I have found to be helpful for me. It may not be the same for anyone else.
    mr. eleven and properWood like this.
  10. WalkingForward

    WalkingForward Fapstronaut

    No. At least not mindfulness meditation taught properly.

    This video provides a good explanation of mindfulness.

    Edit: the title is a bit confusing but here's a quote from it: "Too many people understand meditation as a way to banish worldly thoughts, but your thoughts will never go away. You've got to observe them like a scientist."

    The value of mindfulness for me is to become better at returning my focus to what I'm doing in the present moment.
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2019
    properWood likes this.

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