We’ve all done it – procrastination. Such a big word, for such a simple action – or lack thereof, really. It is hard to change old habits that we’ve been repeating for years, or for a lifetime. Yet, the very desire to change the way in which we do things, highlights the fact that we want things to be different, or we want to do them differently, to achieve better or different outcomes. The good news is that procrastination can be beaten, especially if you’re aware that you’re doing it and if you understand why you’re doing it.
You may wonder why I’m writing about procrastination when I’ve mentioned before that you should only do what you really feel inspired to do. Well, in some cases we have things to do because we’ve given our word and part of living life unbound, is living with integrity and being true to our word.
I also believe that we should be robust in pursuit of our goals. We should do whatever it takes, even if it involves kicking our own butts!
Do you find yourself fiddling with your social media accounts or browsing the internet instead of getting your work done? Then this post is for you!
What’s Procrastination & Why Do We Do It?
Procrastination sees millions of people every day putting off important tasks in favor of time wasting activities. When time looms and the project is due, we’re in a panic, realizing we should’ve started sooner. In the end, if we manage to deliver, it is often a sub-par result.
Unfulfilled aspirations can stop someone from completing a good job, as they expect too much from themselves. Fear of failure is a key component to procrastination. You may think about all the things that may go wrong, rather than focusing on the end result, thus putting yourself under entirely too much pressure.
If you find yourself putting off, slacking, delaying, or hiding from important changes, now is the time to stop procrastination in its tracks with these tips.
1. Eat an Elephant Bite By Bite
If you find the task overwhelming, you’re more likely to procrastinate. By breaking it into a logical, step-by-step process, and avoid looking at the entire process as a completed project, you will find it much easier to manage.
2. Change of Scenery
Consider your working environment and try to see whether it inspires you to work or not. Some people work in their bedrooms, but for most of us, that simply inspires laziness. Even if you work in a well-appointed office, it may lose its inspiration after a while, so it will be worth your while to work elsewhere for a few hours.
3. Crack the Whip
At least mentally… Do this by setting up a rigorous schedule of deadlines. If you don’t finish a certain project or step on time, it will throw off everything else.
4. Remove Distractions
Identify the things that help distract you, causing you to procrastinate, and remove them. It’s so easy to become absorbed in distractions without even noticing it. Find ways to remove those distractions so that you can focus on the task at hand.
5. Be Inspired
Surround yourself by people who inspire you to take action and to make things happen. If they are not part of your day-to-day life, follow their blogs, or make a point of reading their books and learning from them. Inspiration goes a long way to beating procrastination.
The 5-Minute Procrastination Hack
Ideally, you should be able to speak to yourself while you’re procrastinating, asking yourself why you’re doing it and reminding yourself of the consequences of doing it.
However, if you seem unable to motivate yourself, try the 5-minute hack. I use it all the time and it works. Most of us procrastinate on things that will take less than five minutes. Instead, we spend hours agonizing over it, wasting so much more time.
Next time you notice that old procrastination creeping in, ask yourself if it will take less than 5-minutes, and if you answer yes, just DO IT!
That’s a great way to not only get things done, but to also help you beat the habit of procrastination by showing yourself just how simple it really is to get things done and may motivate you to do more.