The procrastination bug has struck again! I’ve been procrastinating on just about everything for the last couple of days, and not very productively. So, I decided that instead of fighting it any longer, I will just turn up the radio and write about ways to deal with procrastination. I’m good at telling you what to do… But telling me what to do? Not so much.
So, let’s talk procrastination and just how destructive it can be. The truth is it can ruin your day, damage your reputation, and have a negative impact on your relationships. I’m just grateful that I don’t have any client work right now. (Although if I had client work I wouldn’t be procrastinating nearly as much as when it’s my own stuff I’m working on.)
Instead of grousing about it, I’ll share a few things I do to break the bug and get down to work.
Do the tasks you like best, first
If you start the day with your favourite task, it’s likely that you’ll get at least one thing crossed off your list for the day. A lot of advice givers tell you to start with the most difficult task first and get it out of the way, but I find that doesn’t really work for me.
When you struggle with motivation, it’s too hard to dig into a really difficult task before you’re fully awake. Instead, if you pick something you enjoy doing to start your day, you’ll get something done and have momentum to propel you into working on the difficult task.
Lately, I've been starting my day working on coloring PLR. It may not be the one thing I need to work on that day, but it's the thing I like best so at least I get an hour of productive work in before breakfast.
Add some really crummy tasks to your list
This is like starting with your favourite tasks, but a little different. We all have tasks we dread doing. If you add those to your list along with the must-do’s, then you’ll tend to procrastinate on those and get the important stuff done instead.
Alleviate your boredom
Procrastination often comes from one simple fact: the job you should be doing is boring. Hence you would rather be doing something else.
One simple solution is to make what you’re doing more enjoyable or interesting. This might mean turning it into a game. Or it might mean providing yourself with a little stimulation: I will often write articles while listening to foreign music videos just to have a bit of an energy boost. I can’t get stuck in the lyrics because I don’t know what they’re saying.
If you’re writing, then try to make the topic more interesting so that you’ll be less likely to be bored. If you’re bored writing it, then your audience is most likely going to be bored reading it too!
Have you ever noticed how much more you get done in the coffee shop or library? That’s because a part of your brain associates procrastination with your regular work spaces. You could even just go as far as your back deck to get a change of scenery and energy.
Boost your energy
It’s also no surprise that we’re more prone to procrastinating when we’re tired. It takes energy to be creative, so if you have low energy it’s easier to be distracted from what you’re supposed to be doing. Improve your energy by taking good care of yourself through diet, exercise, healthy sleep and avoiding stress whenever possible.
When you really stop and think about it, procrastination causes stress. If you’re putting off the work you’re supposed to be doing, it still has to get done eventually. Try these tips when you get bit by the procrastination bug and see if they help you jump start your energy to get things done.
Be sure to leave a comment and let me know if they work for you!
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