Procrastination has been our frenemy for as long as we can remember, and judging by the state of things, nothing will change soon. A huge part of population lives in the world of distractions, especially in our age of technology, and one way or another, it all stems from procrastination. There’s always something better to do than look and apply for that dream job, get to the gym or get your affairs in order.
We’re not all equal in procrastination game, but it is equally difficult to get out of it. We waste about three weeks in every year of our adult life, which only proves just how unappreciative we are of our time and how we spend it. Not to much surprise, most procrastination problems sprout from our badly formed working habits and poor time management, but everything can be amended as soon as you set your mind to it. Putting a stopper on your procrastination will require time, you’ll need a strong strategy to make it happen and here are some wake-up calls combined with tips on how to permanently leave procrastination in the past.
There’s No Such Thing As Perfect Moment
We’ve all used this excuse abundantly, because it makes us only guilty of being a perfectionist, and that is hardly a bad thing, right? However, if you are a grown up, then you should know by now that waiting for a perfect moment to do something only means you’ll spend your whole life waiting for it.
If you care a lot about a certain project, exam or promotion, then you will have to create the perfect timing by working to the best of your abilities and show yourself and others just how much you can do. Waiting for optimal circumstances is one of the procrastination’s most cunning masks, which is why it can probably cause most harm. How many opportunities have you missed, how much time have you wasted, how long have you been telling yourself that the time just isn’t right? Whenever you start excusing yourself by waiting for the next perfect moment, stop in your tracks and decide to do it as soon as possible and then watch results that come out of it.
Getting Overwhelmed Will Only Make It Worse
We’ve all been there – we’ve waited until the last moment to get something done and now that there is so much do, we don’t know where to start. First thing’s first – breathe. Getting overwhelmed and panicky won’t get you anywhere and you’ll only lose more time.
The best thing to do is to separate whatever you have to do into smaller tasks, so you can tackle them one by one. At the same time, it’s important not to think about how tiresome and difficult it will be to get everything done, but rather focus on what you’re doing right now. That way, you will be more
productive and successful and the feeling of being overwhelmed will subside.
Once you’ve achieved your goal and did what needs to be done, come back to the panic and fear that set in because you’ve procrastinated for too long. After that, understand that your conviction you work better under pressure isn’t worth the stress and that doing things just to get them done usually results in poor quality of your work, which doesn’t bode well for you. People more often than not can tell when you’ve invested some time into a project and when you just had to wing it because you thought you can handle it with practically no time on your hands.
World Wide Web Isn’t Your Friend
Unless it’s a part of your job to be active on social media, steer clear of them when you’re working. Social networks are like a vacuum that sucks you into its news feed and you don’t really want to get out. Just think how many times have you lost an hour, even more just by reading tweets or browsing 9gag?
This doesn’t just go for social media, but for the entirety of internet – with so many procrastination opportunities at your fingertips, how can you resist? Whether you’re in your office or working from home, do your best to use internet only for work purposes, and if you think your will just isn’t strong enough, there are other options you can resort to. There are hundreds of useful apps that will help you avoid procrastination by limiting your time on certain websites, after which you won’t be able to access them until the next day. There are some offices that set up a VPN that won’t allow you to login into any social media, which might seem too strict, but is on point both productivity and security-wise. Most of our “procrastination tools” are on the web these days, which means you have to be aware of just how much time you waste, and some anti-procrastination apps will show you detailed charts of your web activities. The results you get might not be a pretty sight, but they can serve as a wakeup call.
Timetable For Things You Hate Doing
To do lists are best friends of good time management, but how good are you at making them? Having a daily schedule of what needs to be done is definitely something you should think about, but you also need to know how to do it right.
You know you’ll always do things you like doing and oftentimes we spend too much time doing things we enjoy and putting off more difficult tasks that still need to be done. A good idea is to get a to-do list for things you really dislike doing, including chores, working out, finishing a work project etc. Set how much time you need to spend on each of them, outline the smaller tasks within the bigger ones and get going. Whenever you think of having a break, by all means do so, but do something meaningful. Have some tea, talk to your loved ones, take care of your pet or just sit in mindful silence for a couple of minutes. After that, get back to work and the satisfaction you’ll get when you’re done will be amazing. Not only that, but you’ll spend much less time than you would if you had procrastination intervals.
It All Starts With You
This sounds like a Captain Obvious statement, but we never actually think about how we work and what triggers us into procrastination mode. Our mind is tuned to work in patterns, which means that we all have exact situations and feelings that push us into believing that procrastinating is the best solution.
For some, it’s being conceited and believing that your capacities can overcome any obstacle, even if it means losing sleep because you started too late. While having high capacities is a great tool, think about how good you could be if you invested more of yourself into your tasks instead of procrastinating until the last minute. Some people have mechanisms of justifying themselves for not doing it earlier, and they also like to remember all other times they
were successful in something, even though they procrastinated. Maybe you scared whatever you do won’t be good enough or you’re simply not interested in what you’re doing.
Whatever the reasoning behind your procrastinating habits, it’s crucial to identify them and keep a close watch whenever they pop up. Once you start seeing the pattern in which you procrastinate and how often it shows its ugly face, you’ll know when you need to counteract it with keep working with even more energy.
As you can see, procrastination is a pattern, a program in which we operate and we can get rid of it quite well, as long as we pay attention. This won’t be easy, because we’ve been procrastinating for a long time, so it won’t go away without a bang. But if you’re sick and tired of constantly being behind on everything in your life, then breaking free from procrastination is more than desirable, it’s a necessity.