Do you spend most your day putting off doing things? If so, you’re not alone!
Procrastination is a trap that many of us fall into.
Often people confuse procrastination with laziness, but the two are very different.
Procrastination is an active decision to put off doing what you know you should do in favour of something else. On the other hand, laziness implies a lack of interest, passiveness, and the refusal to do anything.
So how can we then overcome our procrastination?
1) Acknowledge That You Are Procrastinating
You may be procrastinating if you:
- Do not tackle a task until you are in the right mood or at the right time.
- Make low-priority tasks the focus of your day.
- Start a high priority task and then realise you need to organise all your cupboards.
- Put off doing something important on your to-do list for a long time.
2) Identify WHY You Procrastinate
If you want to begin to tackle procrastination, you must understand why you are doing it, for instance:
- Do you find a particular task boring or unpleasant?
- Do you have doubts about your ability?
- Are you worried about failing/success?
- Do you have poor decision making?
3) Implement Anti-Procrastination Techniques
You won’t be able to eliminate procrastination overnight but here are a few tips to start practising:
- Reward yourself. When you complete a challenging task on time, reward yourself for your hard work. Whatever that reward may be, enjoy the feeling of your accomplishment!
- Reduce distractions. Try to find somewhere quiet whilst also turning off social media and emails, and stay away from the TV while working!
- Adapt your internal dialogue. Using the phrases “should” and “must” imply a lack of choice. You may feel overwhelmed and even self-sabotage as a result. Instead when you say “I choose to,” you convey ownership of the task, which makes you feel more in charge.
- Act as you go. Rather than letting tasks build up over time, focus on them as soon as they arise.
- Tackle the hard tasks first. Prioritize those tasks that are least enjoyable. You can then devote the rest of your day to work you enjoy.
What’s your favourite tip on this list?