I’ll get my paper started , I just need to check my facebook page.”. “I’ll get to the gym, I just need to be in the right mind set”. “ I know the laundry is piling up but I can’t miss the True Blood season finale”. Sound familiar? Yup, it’s procrastination. Statistics show that procrastination affects over 20% of the population and is growing steadily as it has been over the past 30 years.
Why do we procrastinate? Is it laziness or maybe fear of failure? Are we perfectionists that will only begin working after every little detail is in place? Or perhaps we easily panic or get distracted when we have something important to get done.
Whatever the reasons may be it deters us from our daily productivity but luckily it is something we can learn to control.
Here are some helpful tips to help you tackle that burden that is weighing you down.
1) Breath! You will feel much better in an instant by taking a few deep breaths. Getting more oxygen into your brain and releasing physical tension will allow you to be more calm and collected even if your demanding situation is completely stressing you out.
2) Jot Em Down! Start by listing the individual tasks that need to get done, write whatever comes to mind. Organize your list in order of priority and deadline. Try breaking down the larger projects into smaller parts to make them easier to accomplish. Next to each task set an estimated time slot. This will give you the clarity to complete each task in an organized and timely manner.
3) 1-2-3 Go! Your well organized list is in front of you and now it is time to fire it up. 1-2-3, we use this tactic with our kids, using the #3 as the ultimate threat. So, (close your eyes and visualize in big bold letters, “DO IT NOW”) count until 3, jump up from whatever you are doing and get moving. Remember… Don’t count the minutes, make the minutes count….Don’t loose the momentum once you have it.
4) Check! Now for the best part, make a big red check in the box near each task that you complete. Watching each box get checked throughout the day is the best payoff you can ask for and will encourage you to keep going.
5) Shutout! With facebook, twitter, iphones, BBMs, gilt, hulu… distractions are almost inevitable. No wonder so many of us are ADD. Shut everything out if possible. Award yourself with 3-4 little breaks throughout the day. Whether it’s a snack, a red bull, a quick facebook glance, an awesome Gilt deal on your favorite Marc Jacob bag, go for it, but remember you want to keep the momentum so don’t get carried away.
6) Don’t Panic! If you didn’t complete all your tasks in one day, spread them out over a reasonable block of time. Mark everything down on paper so you can keep track.
Enjoy this clip that demonstrates this ever so common problem many of us face.