How to stop Procrastination
Procrastination is always attributed to be a thief of time. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing till it’s too late and when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.
Here are simple guidelines to help curb procrastination syndrome.
- Take few minutes to list out the things you want to do
On a blank sheet of paper or laptop note several important activities you are to achieve for the day, week or month.
2. Break Your Work into Little Steps
Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple to achieve
3. Change Your Environment
Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.
One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around.
4. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines
Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.
Break down your project then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date.
5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action
I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies.
Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.
6. Get a Buddy
Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.
7. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome
What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.
8. Re-Clarify Your Goals
If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.
Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?
9. Stop Over-Complicating Things
Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything. What counts is quality of effort, not perfect results. Don’t let yourself get bogged down with a preoccupation for perfectionism.
10. Get a Grip and Just Do It
At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.