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How to get yourself to work when you don\'t want to do it :-)
Thread poster: Dante1
Dante1
English
Dec 22, 2001

if you ever had a problem like that?

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Hans Hereijgers
Local time: 12:55
Spanish to Dutch
+ ...
Kick yourself Dec 22, 2001

Or let someone else kick you

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Dyran Altenburg  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 06:55
English to Spanish
+ ...
Get motivated Dec 22, 2001

Tape a note on your monitor with the amount you will be earning from that job. On the other side, tape a couple of next months\' bills or a picture of whatever you will be buying with that money.



If that doesn\'t help, then turn the computer off, go out for a walk, play with your kids, or visit friends until the urgency to come back and finish the job gets unbearable.



Sounds drastic, but it does help.





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Laura Gentili  Identity Verified
Italy
Local time: 12:55
Partial member (2002)
English to Italian
+ ...
there are many techniques Dec 22, 2001

1. Look at public ProZ bids in your language pair and see how many people are desperate for work while you have some

2. Make an Internet search about someone who was at school with you and he is now assistant professor at some university. This gives me an immediate push about doing my job at my best

3. Read some website or articles related to the subject you are translating about. Seeing that people care, discuss the subject or are expert at it might boost your motivation about doing your job (they might read your translation some day)

4. Try to remember the awful feeling you had when you had no work

5. If nothing works, give the first pages/chapter/strings to translate to one of your colleagues. This will make you feel you are losing your money and how stupid you are at not doing it yourself.



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Thijs van Dorssen  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:55
Member (2002)
Dutch to German
+ ...
What to do if you don't feel like working? Work anyway!! Dec 22, 2001

Hans and Dyran are both right! You have to kick yourself in the b...! I have this problem every day. In Germany they say: den inneren Schweinehund überwinden.



Being self-employed has many advantages. But what you have to keep on doing is motivate yourself. This is not just for translators. It counts for everybody. The best motivation is succes. Work hard and do what you do best or what you like best. Succes will come.



Phase 1: Small successes. You get to do a profitable job.

Phase 2: your company is expanding.

Phase 3: You go and visit your office every day and talk to the office manager.

Phase 4: You do that every week after playing golf.



I am only kidding but this is how I motivate myself. Succes will come if you do a bit more than your competitors.



Regards


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Werner George Patels, M.A., C.Tran.(ATIO)
Local time: 06:55
German to English
+ ...
What an unusual question (for a translator)! Dec 22, 2001

Just when I thought that nothing could surprise me anymore, something else pops up telling me that I was wrong.



This is a highly unusual question for a translator - and these forums. After hundreds of postings and messages where translators complained about the lack of work (especially since September 11), I find it remarkable that a translator (of all beings) should have difficulties getting started.



I agree with the advice given before: just think of the money you\'re going to make (and all the beautiful things you could buy) - of course, this trick only works if you are not one of the \"cheapos\" working for 1 cent a word. If that\'s the case, then, yes, I\'d fully understand if you could not do it





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AndrewBM
Ireland
Local time: 11:55
Spanish to English
+ ...
Nothing unusual Dec 22, 2001

Translator is a human being like anyone else. My suggestion is to drop it all for one week and take a holiday abroad, if possible - works really well!



Happy Christmas!
[addsig]


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John Kinory
Local time: 11:55
English to Hebrew
+ ...
We all need motivation Dec 22, 2001

Come on, Werner, aren\'t you being just a tad unrealistic?

The self-employed do have the problem that there is no clocking-in, no office manager who makes sure you are not skiving off to the cafe or the betting shop when you should be working, no HR director to warn you about being fired if you misbehave ...

All the ideas above are great. As far as the financial side is concerned, I keep a very close eye on my cashflow. Just seeing the figure dipping below my self-imposed threshold is enough to make me sit up later that night, and accept a job I would otherwise turn down.

But more positive, perhaps, is to take lots of breaks. Many translators, I am sure, sit in a fixed position and get very tense, or at least tired. Get up, walk around the block, have a black coffee or an orange juice and a banana or Danish for energy (or a latte and an organic cereal bar, if you live in California ). Soon, you\'ll be screaming to get back to the keyboard and banish that annoying screen saver!
[addsig]


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xxxH.A.
English to Russian
+ ...
Here is my advice: Dec 23, 2001

Clean up your desk.

Have your coffee in a fine china cup.

Turn on Herzegowina March (low volume though.)

Work, work, work.

In the end of the day, have a glass of good wine and pat yourself on the shoulder.

Repeat the same next day and until the work is done.


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Derek Smith  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:55
Italian to English
+ ...
Don't do it of course! Dec 23, 2001

Hi

Your question and many of the answers you have received confirm a very widespread \"dualistic\" view of the self which, in my opinion, is most damaging. The concept of \"getting oneself to do something\" is, if we pause to reflect for a moment, quite absurd. Unless, that is, we accept that we are composed of two people, presumably, in this case, a virtuous hardworker and a slothful degenerate. Each definition is, of course, a parody that does not reflect in any measure the real complexity of a human being. The fact is that if you don\'t want to do something, to preserve your physical, spiritual, and emotional well-being the default and natural course of action is not to do it. In the case of translation work, this feeling may be due to any number of factors that are currently beyond our conscious or intellectual grasp, but are (and our feeling of reluctance to work tells us this) of significant import. As one of your other contributors suggests, when you adopt this highly respectful attitude towards yourself (i.e. when you listen to and follow your instincts), the situation might evolve thusly:

- the work was badly paid / accepted under duress and you have at least made a statement of protest

- the work wasn\'t as urgent as you had been trying to \"frighten yourself!\" into imagining

- you approach it when you are feeling so inclined and, fired by the power that comes from unity of purpose and tranquillity, you proceed to work very well and very quickly and have solved the \"problem\" before you realise it.

Let\'s learn from the animal kingdom: does anyone know of any instance of an animal deliberately inflicting pain upon itself? Is anyone actually equipped with legs and knees articulated in such a manner that self-imposed ass kicking is a viable option?



Derek


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AndrewBM
Ireland
Local time: 11:55
Spanish to English
+ ...
Still I would suggest a holiday Dec 24, 2001

I quite agree with Derek, though, by the virtue of all rules there are some exceptions to be found among the animals (just ask a biologist among the colleagues).



By going on holidays for Christmas a translator can do a lot of good both to his profession as well as to him/herself.
[addsig]


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Marcus Malabad  Identity Verified
Canada
Local time: 12:55
Member (2002)
German to English
+ ...
drop work Dec 24, 2001

buy a ticket to Costa Rica, sip some daquiri, go native and get away from self-yclept, chest-beating, holier-than-thou translator barons who love to impose, inflict and dictate, making us all yawn

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Werner George Patels, M.A., C.Tran.(ATIO)
Local time: 06:55
German to English
+ ...
Very moderator-like, as usual Dec 24, 2001

Quote:


On 2001-12-24 16:15, marcushm wrote:

buy a ticket to Costa Rica, sip some daquiri, go native and get away from self-yclept, chest-beating, holier-than-thou translator barons who love to impose, inflict and dictate, making us all yawn









By the way: proper spelling is \"daiquiri\"! (\"Holier than thou\" - and proud of it )

[ This Message was edited by: on 2001-12-24 21:32 ]

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John Kinory
Local time: 11:55
English to Hebrew
+ ...
How nice that some of us can pop over to Costa Rica whenever we feel like it Dec 25, 2001

Probably means that you are a brilliant translator. Or at least, have rich parents. Myself, I am such an awful translator that I can\'t afford to. At least, not every day. Or even when the text I am translating is achingly boring. But I still have to do it, to put bread on the table and birthday presents for ... ah heck, never mind. Holier-than-thou ... yeeees ... now where have I come across someone like that, recently ...
[addsig]


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Derek Smith  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:55
Italian to English
+ ...
Disappearing up own exhaust pipe Dec 25, 2001

Oops... Perhaps I have been, erm over-enthusiastic - I hope I have at least helped you all get a good night\'s sleep.

Though currently untitled, I think I could make a Duke if I were to buy the right sort of clothes.

Max Res.


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