Chapter 3   Trick Yourself into Getting Done

第三章  忽悠自己把事情完成


Just as Mom used to grind up that bitter pill in a bowl of ice cream, you can make working on tough tasks easier to swallow. Checking an item off your to-do list — and the sense of satisfaction and completion that comes with that simple action — is one of the best things that happens during your workday. But there are roadblocks, both environmental and just plain mental, on the way to “done.”



Part of the reason you leave the office at night feeling so far behind on work comes from the nature of the modern workplace. Rife with distractions and interruptions, many offices couldn’t be less conducive to productivity. Noisy disruptions and drop-by co-workers aside, the reality of information work is that there’s always another email to open, another website to visit, another message that  makes your smartphone vibrate off the desk. At any moment you have a dozen things you  could work on, and even that choice is a source of  distraction and paralysis. It’s easy to spend the day constantly switching gears and reevaluating what’s the biggest fire to put out next rather than making progress on important work.



Even when you’re alone, with email and phone turned off, procrastination rears its ugly head. Starting in on a tough project feels like an impossible feat; suddenly, rather than spending the afternoon working on the big presentation, you’re  ripping your CD collection into iTunes. In a culture that says, “You can do anything you want!” your to-do lists fill up with gargantuan tasks that would scare off the most functional person on Earth: “Learn French. Start small business. Buy new house.  Go back to school.”



The self-sabotage doesn’t stop there. A 2005 study1 shows that people commonly overestimate the amount  of time they think they have in the future to get things done, leaving them with  overbooked calendars and incomplete commitments. An exaggerated sense of how much time you have — and how much time tasks can take you to complete — can cut off your  best efforts at getting things done.



In his excellent book “The War of Art”, writer Steven Pressfield calls the inner force that keeps you from doing your work “Resistance” with a capital R. Pressfield says a true Professional (with a capital P) gets her work done no matter how strong “Resistance” pushes against her. I’d add that the Professional arms herself adequately in the war  against Resistance to make victory more likely. In short, she makes the right thing to do the  easy thing to do.

Steven Pressfield在《艺术的战争(The War of Art)》一书中,将阻止你完成工作的内在力量称为“阻碍力(Resistance,R大写)”。他说对于一个真正的“专家”(Professional,P大写),不管“阻碍力”多大,都可以把事情完成。我要补充一点,这个“专家”在与“阻碍力”的斗争中,充分地武装了自己,才得以胜利。简而言之,这个“专家”做了正确的事,使得事情容易去做。


You can organize your tasks and your calendar in a way that speeds you  toward the finish line faster, and this chapter shows you how. In contrast to other  chapters in this book, the hacks here focus more on adjusting the way you work than  on computer tricks. Use these hacks to cross off items on your task list more often  and treat yourself to that delicious sense of completion every single day.


  1. OneNoter left a comment on 2012 年 02 月 18 日 at 下午 2:13


  2. OneNoter left a comment on 2012 年 02 月 19 日 at 上午 1:47


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