Procrastination: it’s something many of us tend to do, no matter what the task.
We know that putting something off doesn’t help us and it only makes things worse by adding stress to our lives, but knowing this somehow only makes us procrastinate more. So we create a procrastination loop that we get stuck in!
How can you stop this vicious cycle, use your time more effectively, and get your tasks done sooner?
Here are 5 simple ways to give procrastination the flick:
1. Determine why you delay working on your task. Is it a specific task that you’re putting off, or do you procrastinate about everything? What is it about this task that stops you from doing it??
- Are you scared of failing?
- Do you fear that you’ll fall short of what’s expected of you?
- Are you just lazy?
- Are you resentful of whoever put this obligation upon you??
By answering those questions you can get in touch with the real reason, and tap away the feelings it brings up. That will give you clarity and you’ll be able to get the job done more easily. ?
2. Make a plan. Sometimes the task is just so big it’s overwhelming. Making a step-by-step plan sets a specific schedule and timeline to complete the task, but broken down into little steps that you can easily achieve.
Write your plan down on paper to help you better organize your thoughts and figure out the small steps. Set attainable tasks on a daily, weekly or hourly timetable, as it applies to your situation.
- You are less likely to be overwhelmed when you’re faced with small, manageable steps.?
3. Be Realistic about what you can achieve in your plan. This makes completing each step easier, and you’ll be less likely to put it off. Knowing your limits will make your goals seem easier and less of a mountain to climb. ?If you’re still not doing it easily, perhaps the tasks are still too big – perhaps they need to be two or more steps, not just one.
4. Just Begin. It sounds simple enough, but this simple tip is really worth paying attention to.
- No matter how large or insurmountable the task may seem, beginning with even a small action will build momentum. Simply beginning also tends to put the task into perspective and makes it seem more possible than ever.?
5. Take Breaks at least every two hours. Taking scheduled breaks while working on your task refreshes your body and mind. If you go for a 10-minute walk or sit quietly and breathe, or do something else you enjoy, you’ll feel re-energize and you’ll be in a better frame of mind to forge on.
- Be sure you’re not using breaks as an excuse, that’s just another way of procrastinating!
Procrastinating is an annoying habit that many of us fall into. Luckily, it can be overcome and if you are prone to procrastination you can become more proactive and productive.
Follow these 5 tips, practice them frequently, and with some time and patience you’ll find yourself getting more done, more often.