Don't Procrastinate Reading These 10 Useful Steps to Defeat Procrastination
"Avoid procrastinating to have a successful career and life". Umm, don’t know the meaning. What does it mean? Forget it, we will Google it later. As for now, let’s play Pokemon Go.Pokemon Go.
This is exactly what procrastination is. I told you how vital it is to enhance your life and professional career, yet you are putting off doing something important to do something trivial. You may be opting for doing what you are comfortable doing or what you enjoy doing instead of the seemingly hard and difficult task which is what needs to be done right now.
Procrastination is when there is a significant time lapse between when you decide what needs to be done and the time you finally do it. As per psychologist Professor Clarry Lay “A temporal gap between intended behaviour and enacted behaviour” causes us to procrastinate. This is a destructive habit and it is imperative that we learn to control it.
Most of us do this to some degree at some point or other in our day to day life. For some, it is a chronic disease that needs to be uprooted to live life to their full potential. They get stuck in the loop of delaying, slacking, missing deadlines, (hence) hiding from work and facing work only when it is unavoidable. Taking proactive steps to avoid procrastination by managing your time and tasks is a sure shot way to success. You may have loads of goals and ambitions but still be a procrastinator.
It is to be noted that sometimes it is good to take time before jumping into action as soon as a task lands at your lap. It is good to prioritise first but as soon as you have decided what to do and when to do it, get cracking. Also, if you have a valid reason to put off something for later, it is legit but ensure that you get back on track soon. Prolonged delaying by making mere excuses is procrastinating.
If you intend to turn your life around and live life to the fullest and get the best out of it, follow the following steps to overcome procrastinating.
1.Recognize That You are Procrastinating
Be honest with yourself and recognise if you are a procrastinator. Check if you are doing the following.
- Waiting for the “right time” or the “right mindset/ mood” to get started on the important task at hand.
- Ticking off the low priority tasks in your To Do List and not finding enough time to get to the high priority ones.
- Leaving a top priority item on your To Do list for a long time.
- Reading and re-reading your e-mails several times without deciding what to do about them or starting any work with respect to them.
- Starting a high-priority task and almost immediately going off to do something trivial like getting a cup of coffee.
- Accepting others’ requests for doing low priority tasks and wasting time on them instead of completing the important ones in your existing list.
2. Figure Out The Reason For Your Procrastination
All tasks (be it personal or professional) have a boring, unappealing and unpleasant features in them which may lead you to procrastinate. The only way to deal with such situations where you are stuck with the task you are not interested in is to get over with it. Try to focus on the interesting aspects of it and you might find it enjoyable to get it done.
Disorganised behaviour is another cause of procrastination. When a task needs to be done, calmly assess the importance of it, how long it is going to take and by when it needs to be finished. With this information in hand, plan your schedule wisely and prepare your To Do list based on priority. Organised people are better capable of keeping the temptation of procrastination at bay. Even if you are organised, you might be afraid that being successful will open a floodgate of such unpleasant tasks towards you.
Do not over-complicate things. You may be a perfectionist but do not let that be a deterrent when it comes to task completion. There is no right time to do something. You just have to go ahead and do it when you have everything you need (information, manpower, tools, etc) to do it.
3. Do Not Let The Task Overwhelm You
The enormity of the task at hand may often scare us into procrastination. Make life simpler by breaking it down into small steps. Break them even down if they seem daunting. Finish each step at a time and each success will give you a sense of achievement and encourage you to move forward.
4. Increase Your Productivity By Changing Your Environment
Organize your workspace in a way that helps you feel inspired. A drowsy environment only makes you feel lethargic and lazy. Sometimes even an inspiring environment can start looking drab and boring over a period of time. So make sure to keep revamping your workspace and environment on a regular interval to keep your productivity at its peak.
5. Set Deadlines
As a continuation of breaking a task down to small steps, create timelines for each of these steps. Plan your schedule meticulously. This will give you a number of deadlines to meet and keep the urgency in the situation. If you fail to meet one, the others following that small step will be affected. Hence subconsciously, it creates the pressure required to push us into action. One big deadline for the ultimate task means we keep procrastinating feeling we have ample time in our hand to get it done.
6. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops
Remove distractions. Spend less time on social networking sites. Delete some of the games you play the most from your phone. This will give you more time to focus on the task at hand.
7. Hang Out With People Who Inspire You
Inspiring people are so called as they inspire you to take action. Being surrounded by loved ones and by the people you admire, helps you to be inspired to get into action mode. The people we hang out with tend to influence our behaviour. So being in the company of such hard working, go-getting, inspiring people, people who you want to be like, helps you to get the drive to put in more effort to achieve your dreams
8. Get A Friend
Make your ordeal fun by sharing it with a like minded companion. You can hold each other responsible for achieving your set targets and this will help you stay on track of progress.
9. Connect With Someone Who Has Already Achieved What You Want To Achieve
Seeing someone who had already done the daunting task, makes the task look more achievable. Seek them out and hang out with them. Share your obstacles and discuss ways to overcome them. Seeing that success is within reach is a great way to spur someone into action.
10. As Nike says “Just Do It”
No matter how much you plan or strategise, nothing is going to move ahead if you do not take action in the end. The only way to beat procrastination is to take action. So get a grip and do it.