At times we all find it difficult to overcome procrastination and do things we don’t want to do. Even when we know that waiting will create a lot of challenges, getting started can still seem impossible. Unfortunately, unless we learn to overcome procrastination it will start to affect your job-related tasks, and have a negative impact on your professional career. Is procrastination a serious challenge in your life?
Lets look at how we can overcome this annoying tendency to put things off, and start getting things done instead?
Overcome Procrastination with these strategies:
- Schedule when you’re going to do it. Make an appointment in your calendar for the day and time you’re going to work on the task. This is far more effective than just leaving everything up in the air until the right moment seems to present itself.
- Consider scheduling just enough time to get started. A long, unpleasant task can be very difficult to start. Think, “I’m going to work on this for 20 minutes.” That’s easy enough that you should be able to sit down and get busy. Interestingly, once you start the task that you’ve been putting off, you’ll very often find that you’ll spend more than 20 minutes on it. Getting starting is the tough part. Make starting the task as easy as possible.
- Break the task into smaller parts. Larger tasks can seem overwhelming. By dividing the task into manageable parts, it will be psychologically easier to tackle the project. It’s easier to do 10 small things than one big thing.
- For example, once you’ve done five small things, you know that you’ve completed five things, instead of just starting on the one big thing without deriving any sense of accomplishment. So break that task down into smaller bites.
- Which part is the most dreaded part? Frequently, there is a small part of the task that is really holding you back. Is it possible to get someone else to take care of that part of the task for you? Can you outsource it? Many times, if someone else handles the part you dread, everything else will fall into place.
- Pick the best time to do it. We all have times of the day that we’re better at certain tasks. We have times when we’re better at concentrating, others when we’re more creative, and other times when we have more energy. What’s the proper time for you to tackle the task? Do you need quiet and privacy? Do you need access to certain people?
- Get what you need to complete it. Make a list of the tools, supplies, and resources that you’ll need to both begin and complete the task. It’s hard to get started when you know you can’t get finished.
- Reward yourself! Give yourself a reward for completing the task. You’ve earned it! It doesn’t have to be anything big, but we all like a little treat now and then. A little additional motivation never hurt anyone.
Imagine how much better your life would be if you could kick the procrastination habit out the door. Unfinished tasks have a profound effect on your sense of well-being and peace of mind. Living with the stress that procrastination can cause isn’t necessary. Start using the tips above and overcome procrastination. You’ll be so glad you did!
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Till Next time
Mike Gardner is The Time Doctor