Want to Overcome procrastination and become super productive?
Overcoming procrastination is a challenge we all face
As a result, we miss out some golden opportunities for our lives and careers. Today we will discuss ways to grab those opportunities and lead our dream lives.
Below we will talk about what is procrastination, why we procrastinate, how to overcome procrastination and best of all how to stick to the habit of not delaying our tasks?
Let’s face it! I am honestly one of the biggest procrastinators you would ever come across. However, since I started practicing the strategies below I have been overcoming the guilt of not doing it on time. Therefore, I cross my fingers that if you bring these strategies in action, you will get your work done in time.
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What is Procrastination?
Procrastination is a very ordinary word. It is the act of putting off today’s task in the hope of tackling it tomorrow. This makes completing that task on time harder and sometimes even impossible. Because we tend to keep procrastinating until the deadline.
How Does Procrastination Effect You?
Putting off tasks you should be focusing on now can cease your most promising career paths. Besides, not only it can reduce the quality of your work but also it makes others not to collaborate with you. Plus, it eventually damages your reputation in your industry.
Now is the Time to Overcome Procrastination
Yes, if not now then never. If you are thinking that you will start working on yourself once you get that huge project done, you will never be able to do so. Therefore, start from today, from now to overcome procrastination.
There are various ways and techniques to overcome procrastination. However, before we start actualizing these strategies, we should learn why we procrastinate.
Why Do We Procrastinate?
Have you ever counted yourself among people such as Leonardo da Vinci or Margaret Atwood?
Then, I would love to tell that there is at least one dimension where you and I are already like them. Yes, you read it right. Because they were massive procrastinators just like ourselves.
It took Leonardo da Vinci almost 16 years to complete his masterpiece, the Mona Lisa. Likewise, Margaret Atwood, the author of The Handmaid’s Tale, says that she spends every morning procrastinating. Thus, she only starts working around three in the afternoon.
Hence, you are not the only master procrastinator. Remarkably, we all tend to procrastinate to some degree. However, the reason as to why we procrastinate differs from person to person. Some of the most general reasons are:
- Perfectionism: Are you the perfectionist who tends to put off tasks due to lack of knowledge or ideas?
- Working on low priority tasks: Do you dread working on more difficult tasks? Consequently, you spend way too much time completing the low priority tasks from your to-do list.
- Lack of motivation: Or are the one who never feels like doing it before the deadline?
- The right mood: Do you always look forward to the perfect mood and environment to get to work?
- Coffee breaks: Do the 5-minute coffee breaks steal your productivity?
- Disorganization: Or does your organization creates all the drama?
While reading these questions, if anytime you felt like “YES, THIS IS IT!”, then you are lucky enough. Because once you understand “Why you are procrastinating”, it gets easier to overcome procrastination.
How to Overcome Procrastination?
If you struggle with being on track, try out these strategies to get things done on time. However, you should remember that overcoming procrastination overnight is just a fantasy.
It is only possible to overcome procrastination if you stop practicing it. Instead practice healthy habits such as reading, journaling or practicing the following strategies.
11 Proven Ways to Overcome Procrastination
1. Keep a Journal
When it comes to writing, it is often considered just a tool to express your emotions. However, not all of us understand how impactful it can be. Consider building a house without any blueprint. Makes sense, eh?
Keeping a journal usually includes your dreams, ambitions, and to-dos. Writing down your tasks, dreams and goals signals to your supercomputer aka brain that “THIS IS IMPORTANT!”. In the next leap second, your RAS or reticular activating system highlights opportunities and tools to tackle that task, actualize that dream and achieve that goal.
2. Focus on “WHY”
There are very few people in this world who not only start something huge but also complete it. Even though not every one of us dreams about colonizing Mars, those who do anything similar to this their dreams are only mere dreams. So, what is that makes the difference between Elon Musk and the rest who just dream about making humans multi-planet species? Or what is the difference between those who revolutionize the world and the rest of us?
In Simon Sinek’s money, it is their WHY. So, before we start doing anything open your journal and write down WHY ARE YOU DOING IT. This may send that signal to your RAS which will then look for ways and tools to accomplish it.
Remarkably, often we forget the main purpose of doing something. Therefore, we tend to procrastinate. So, if you are out of the track, open your journal again. And write down WHY YOU STARTED DOING THE WORK IN FIRST PLACE
- why you started doing the work in the first place
- and why you are getting out of track.
3. Eat the Frog First
Yes, every early morning, eat the frog first. But wait! This literally does not mean that you should eat the frog. Instead, start tackling your most difficult task first. Whether you feel like doing it or not, do the most difficult task in the first hand.
Completing your most difficult tasks first not only motivates you for the rest of the day but also it makes accomplishing the smaller tasks easier.
4. Be Realistic and Optimize Your Environment
When scheduling your to-dos, do not expect yourself more than you are. For example, you need to revise some mathematical formulas you have been putting off for a week. If you are not a morning person, do not expect yourself to get up an hour early and revise them. Because there is a 99% chance that you will not. Instead, schedule it after lunch or before dinner.
Also, it is very important to realize that the mess of your room plays a vital role in making you procrastinate. So, every night before you go to be, clean up everything. Next morning when you wake up you will not have any excuses for eating the frog first.
5. Chunk it
When a task feels overwhelming, it results in procrastination more often. Therefore, make small chunks of that
Therefore, divide it into small chunks of tasks. First, brainstorm about your title. Second, do some researches and look for strong points and ideas to support your thesis. Then, write the introduction of your essay. Next, write the supporting ideas and conclusion.
7. Forgive Yourself
If you have wasted an entire month procrastinating, stop punishing yourself for not completing your task in time. Instead, optimize
8. Reward Yourself
If you complete a task on time, reward yourself with a cup coffee or your favorite meal. I am sure you will learn how good accomplishment feels. Next time, you will not postpone your work in the hope of your small treat and the feeling of accomplishment.
9. Drop Perfectionism
Perfectionism is an all-or-nothing mentality. You believe that either you should do it perfectly or you should do not do it at all. perfectionists
What if there is no perfect time and environment? Would you still wait for that perfect time?
That is why, do not wait for the perfect time to arrive, do it now. And focus on things better than perfectionism such as excellence and giving your best to everything.
10. Ask Someone to Supervise You
Sometimes the peer pressure is an amazing tool to keep procrastination at bay. Ask a friend or your brother to look after your progress. If there is nobody, there are millions of tools to increase your productivity.
11. Minimize Distractions
Mute the notification and keep your smartphone at bay. Next, sit in a room free of distraction such as television. Then, start your work.
So, that is it for ways you can overcome procrastination. Besides, remember that it takes time and effort to build a habit but takes more time and extra effort to break that habit, especially bad habits such as procrastination.