2017 is the tenth year of the Slice of Life Story Challenge hosted by Two Writing Teachers, but it is my first time participating. The goal is to write and post a "slice of life" story every day during the month of March. (I will still be posting book reviews but a little less frequently.)
Many classrooms are also participating in the Classroom Slice of Life Story Challenge. My seventh graders will be joining in a very limited form (writing 10 posts over the 10 class periods we have after March 7th when our previous unit wraps up). We'd love to connect with other middle schoolers via Kidblog (drop me a line at katie at thelogonauts.com to connect).
Slice of Life: On Projects and Procrastination
I am fairly certain that everyone survives through a healthy dose of procrastination. Personally I usually find it a productive way to get things done. Deadlines inspire motivation inspire (perhaps) the fear necessary to kick yourself into gear.
I am such an old pro at procrastination (har, har), that I even wrote a paper about it in high school. It was titled "I'll Think of One Eventually" and was an accounting of the many unfinished projects and to do list items that haunted my daily life. Some of them (like painting over the bright pink tulip border in my bedroom) eventually came to fruition, while others did not. But a big part of those things that did eventually get done was the aspect of accountability or a deadline, knowing that for some reason beyond just myself, I needed to get something done.
Rather than focus on the negative side of it (procrastination), I chose to put a more positive look on it and recognize that accountability inspires action and productivity. Back when I participated in 365 Project (a daily photography challenge), knowing that other people were looking at and commenting on my images helped spur me to get off the couch, drag out my camera, and try something new.
Sometimes that something new was a photo walk or an exploration of a new photography technique or idea I hadn't tried before (above: light painting the words "brown out" after losing power in a heat wave one July). And sometimes that something new was taking a quick snapshot of my shoe or a bowl of Skittles and calling it a day.
I learned so much about both myself and my camera through the discipline of daily photography, that I kept at it well past my first 365 days, eventually reaching more than 1,000 before stepping back to give myself time for other things (including a photography blog and then later this teaching blog).
One of the big reasons I decided to finally jump in to the Slice of Life Story Challenge is to give myself that pressure, those deadlines, that accountability to motivate myself to do more writing, more reflecting, and more capturing of the small but meaningful bits of my everyday. Sure, "doing it for myself" ought to be enough, but we all know that it is easier to let ourselves down that to let anyone else know. So, thanks for keeping me going.
What are your favorite strategies for "forcing" yourself into positive action?
(Click here to read my previous Slice of Life Challenge posts.)