For projects that I realy really don't want to do, don't want to look at, don't even want to remember that they exist, I assign myself _miniscule_ tasks, and I reward myself when I do the task.
For example, let's say that you need to have a meeting with ScareyPerson. Maybe that seems small enough to be a Next Action, so you write it down, and two months later you still haven't done it. So apparently it wasn't small enough.
In that case, I would shrink that Next Action to:
- Look up ScareyPerson's email address and put it in contact list.
That's all. That's absolutely all that I require myself to think about right now. And I give even _that_ task a Start Date a week in the future. And it comes, and I either put it off another week or I do it, but eventually I do it. And when I do it, I celebrate - yay me! I did it! I ignore that voice in my head that's griping that I should have already had the meeting two months ago - today, I Did My Job, and I'm entitled to not think about that thing for a little while. Did I say yay me?
Then the weekly review comes around, and the project that requires a meeting needs another Next Action, so I write another miniscule one - or maybe I wrote the action when I looked up the email address, so that I wouldn't have to see the project until the task rolls around:
- Check my calendar for a time to meet with ScaryPerson, and note that in a draft email.
And I put that off a week with a Start Date. And that date comes, and I do it, and yay me! And then I write an action, with a start date another week in the future, of:
- Draft email to ScaryPerson, suggesting meeting.
Draft, not send. Just draft. There's no commitment here. In a week, I can scribble a few sentences, and tweak it a little, and save it to Drafts, and I did my job, and yay me! And I write another action, again with a start date a week in the future, of:
- Send email to ScaryPerson.
Now I have everything that I need to send that mail - I have the address, I wrote the mail, I'm ready. When a moment of courage comes up, all I have to do is click Send. And then eat a pound of chocolate, because, yikes! But yay me! I did my job!
And so on. For me, the key is that certain specific stuff makes me anxious, and I have a natural, I think genetic, rejection of anxiety. (Mom utterly avoided anxiety of all types, and when I need to be motivated to break that habit, I can look at her life.)
I organize my anxiety into bite-sized moments, moments that I can tolerate. I still have to accept being anxious - I have to break my habit of rejecting anxiety, and form a habit of managing it. But I'm not going to get to that point by throwing myself in the deep end; I'm going to get there with gradual exposure.