TIPS TO HELP YOU SMASH PROCRASTINATION
We all know that in order to be successful, we must take action. It’s simple, right? Then why is it so hard to do?
Often it’s because the tasks are boring or difficult, or something we just don’t want to do. So, how do we overcome this? The problem is that denial won’t cause the task to go away.
Procrastination won’t make it any easier; in fact, it will make it harder. So what do we do? Here are a few ideas that can help:
Start with your thinking. You have to address all the negative thoughts and replace them with positive ones. If your mind is full of negative thoughts, you will start to believe that the task is impossible, that it’s okay to give up, put it off, or leave it unfinished. So every time one of those pesky bad thoughts creep in, shut them down immediately, don’t give them time to take hold. Instead of thinking, “I can’t do this,” tell yourself, “I will get this done now.”
Learn when you’re peak performance time is. Your peak performance time is the time of day when you have optimum focus and full energy. For some this is the first thing in the morning, others get into their flow at night. Everyone is different, so what works for me may not for you.
But utilizing this time is important and it shouldn’t be wasted on your habitual activities. Peak performance time should only be used for your most important goal-driven tasks.
Make the main thing the main thing. Decide what your most important tasks are and do them first. Prioritize and organize. Often people use the excuse of doing busy work as a way to put off more important work.
Nothing meaningful and goal-oriented gets done when you allow yourself to get bogged down in trivial activities. Instead, prioritize your tasks and take responsibility for getting the tasks done that moves you closer to your goals.
Learn to say no. Many times it’s hard to say no either because we don’t want to let somebody down or because we’re afraid to turn jobs away. But the truth is that if we overextend ourselves, we might not finish any of our jobs or we might end up missing deadlines. Either way, our clients will be unhappy.
Sometimes saying no is necessary in order to do your best work. Most clients will respect an honest no if you are too busy, and will either opt for a later time or find someone else for the job, but they will remember and appreciate your honesty.
Watch out for distractions. Distractions come in many forms, people may come to you and say, “I just have a quick question,” and that might be true. But if 20 people come to you with a quick question, your day is used up with other people’s work. Either tell them you will get back to them at another time or, better yet, don’t answer the request in the first place.
When your important tasks are completed, you will find time to answer the questions you really want to answer. Another distraction can come in the form of social media. Don’t fall down the rabbit hole of Facebook or get sucked into hours of funny cat videos on Youtube.
Learn to make decisions decisively. You can’t dwell on a decision for too long because then you may end up not deciding at all. If you have all the pertinent information you need then trust yourself to make the decision and move on. Only allow yourself a set amount to make a decision and don’t deviate from the allotted time. If you need to set a timer in the beginning until you build up your decision making confidence.
Don’t forget to treat yourself. No matter how hard we work on our mindset, there will always be some tasks we just don’t like. Or aren’t really good at doing. If you can’t outsource or delegate those tasks there’s nothing wrong with rewarding yourself for completing the things we don’t like to do.
Make good use of time away from your desk. What do you do when you’re shopping, driving, or standing in lines? Is the real estate between your ears going to waste? Do you fill that time with worrying or negative thoughts?
Instead, train your mind to be thinking about new things you can do for your business. Keep a notebook with you at all times and write down any ideas you have that might improve your business. This is a very popular technique because frequently people have great ideas but can’t remember them by the time they get to a place where they can write them down.
Have your toolkit ready. When doing any job having the rights tools makes all the difference. When it comes to putting the lid on procrastination, having a simple timer is a good idea. It can be a kitchen timer, an app on your phone, even the stove timer does the trick.
This allows you to set a time limit to work on a project and then take a break if you need to when time’s up. A planner is another tool for your arsenal. This lets you get everything out of your head and onto paper so you can see what’s the next step you need to take. A plain notebook is a great idea and inspiration catcher. There’s something about putting pen to paper that helps things click.
While this one is not exactly a tool, it is an important part of your toolkit. Create a workspace designed to combat procrastination. Make sure the things that distract you aren’t in the vicinity. Keep your space organized so you don’t have to stop and look for things. Have everything you need to get your job done at hand, so you don’t get sidetracked on the way to get it.
Procrastination is something even the best of us deals with on occasion. But we don’t have to let it stifle us from getting the important things done. With these tips in hand, you are well on your way to shutting procrastination down and crushing your goals like a pro.