Quick & Easy Tips to Nix Procrastination Now
Procrastination: It happens to all of us sooner or later (and for the truly afflicted, it’s always later). When you just don’t want to tackle a tedious or difficult project, you can probably find fifty other things to do instead of addressing That One Thing you really need to do. Could be you’re trying to get back into the swing of things after an epic vacation – jet lag leaves you sleepy, great new memories leave you distracted, overspending leaves you anxious. Or, maybe you’ve been battling a cold or allergies – it’s so tempting to work from bed, but you know it’s not a good way to ensure productivity.
“Tomorrow is often the busiest day of the week.”
Do you find yourself moving tasks from today, to tomorrow, and beyond? Are your self-imposed deadlines constantly being delayed? You don’t have to let your precious time get away from you. Here are some quick and easy tips that will help you banish procrastination once and for all.
- Formalize your commute – even if you work from home.
Start your work day with a preparation routine that encourages productivity. Working from home makes the prospect of tapping away at the keyboard in your pajamas incredibly tempting – trust me, I know! But if you make it a habit to get up, work out, shower, shave, get dressed, and take your coffee to your work space, you will trick your brain into getting down to business. Also, even though you’re working at home, try putting on shoes. You will be surprised at the effect it has on your attitude. Want to see what I do for my morning ritual?
- Let your calendar be the boss.
Pick a calendar method that works for you, and schedule your time every day. Review your calendar each morning, taking stock of what you need to accomplish. If you need to, schedule breaks, lunch, and errands.
- Look at more than the deadline.
When you take on a new project, don’t just write down the deadline. That’s the perfect way to ensure procrastination. Estimate how much time it will take you to complete the project, and schedule those hours into your work days.
- Eyeball your home office.
Is it too cozy? Are you often tempted to sink down into your arm chair for some social media time? If so, consider redecorating your work space in a way that eliminates procrastination triggers from your space.
- Take smaller bites.
When you find yourself procrastinating due to the overwhelming size of a project, break it down into more manageable chunks. Tackling the monster one tentacle at a time will make it far less intimidating.
- Unplug until you’re done.
Turn off your electronic distractions. Start by closing your inbox and turning unnecessary notifications off on your phone. Schedule time each day to read and respond to emails. Reward yourself for being productive by scheduling social media time during lunch, or at the end of the day. Give yourself this treat in exchange for banishing procrastination.
- Wake up and be purposeful.
Stay mindful of the reasons behind everything you do. You go to the gym at 5 am to feel and look better. You dedicate the first 2 hours of every work day to writing because that’s when your creative juices flow best. You do an hour of marketing right after lunch because it helps your business grow. Some people find it helpful to start their day journaling about topics like these. Setting daily goals, and clearing your mind of all the extra stuff that can bog you down and cause procrastination are just two great ways to utilize journaling.
Procrastination is a problem for about a quarter of us. It is usually a major factor for people who fail at being self-employed. Not all of these tips will work for all people. I encourage you to try them, tweak them to fit your needs, and see what helps you stay productive for longer.
If you’re serious about taking your life to the next level, here’s my best advice for getting started.