7 Ways To Overcome Procrastination
Almost everyone has a tendency to put things off till the last minute.
But that’s normal, most people experience procrastination once in awhile in different areas of their lives. We simply fail to motivate our self to assume a task, project or activity because of excuses, negative thoughts and fears.
It’s not that hard to overcome procrastination. All you have to do is build good habits practiced by successful people and make them part of your daily routine. Because really, what we do in our daily basis determines what we will achieve in life.
Here are 7 practical ideas to overcome this self-sabotaging behavior:
Here’s what Wikipedia has to say about it:
The principle was suggested by management thinker Joseph M. Juran. It was named after the Italian economist Vilfredo Pareto, who observed that 80% of income in Italy was received by 20% of the Italian population. The assumption is that most of the results in any situation are determined by a small number of causes.
You can apply this to procrastination by only focusing on the few activities (20%) that produce the best outcomes for you (80%).
It’s essential to identify the handful of actions that have the most impact on your work (task, project). Here’s what I do personally to determine those few activities:
- Take out a sheet of paper
- Write down what you do on a daily basis
- Mark the tasks that are essential and have the most impact on your business
- Focus on the marked tasks and throw the rest away
After writing down the important tasks, you have to prioritize them. Fortunately, there is a system called the ABCD-System that can help you achieve this task. Here’s how it works:
Go through your list of tasks and mark each task with one of the following letters:
- A is a most important task
- B is a must to do task but isn’t as important than A
- C is a task with no consequences if it doesn’t get done
- D is a task that can be delegated
Thereby, you will not only prioritize your tasks but also learn to say no to irrelevant ones.
Tie your tasks to a specific time box. One time-boxing system that I really like and use personally is the Pomodoro technique. The idea behind Time-Boxing is to break your day into small portions of work where you’re 100% focused on a single task without interruption or distraction.
Yes! I must mention it one more time. Because distractions can have a profound impact on your productivity. When you are working on a task, try not to distract yourself from it. That means no checking email, twitter, facebook, texting friends or switching between projects. During that time box concentrate on only that task and nothing else.
Tracking tasks and projects on a daily basis is a good habit to improve anything in life. It’s easy to forget how far you’ve come as the weeks and months go by. By tracking your accomplishments along the way, you can look back and learn lessons from the past so you can adjust your strategy to achieve better results.
You should reward yourself after completing a task. By creating a reward system you can overcome the lack of desire for a specific work. Here’s how it works:
– Make a list of fun things you enjoy on daily basis (Reading, Blogging, Social media, Tv, Youtube, …)
– Use a time-boxing system like Pomodoro technique
– Resist all temptation that distract you from your actual task during the time box
– After the time box reward yourself with a 5 minute break to do a “fun” activity
We all have those days when we’re not feeling our best and we’re are not in the mood to do something. This feeling can be overcome by listening to motivational programs, by reading inspiring books, motivational quotes or by watching good inspiring videos or movies. Tapping into motivational triggers, can give you a push to reinforce your motivational levels.
Last but not least, be patient through the entire process. I know, we would all like to see instant results, but it’s not how things work.
You must remember that there’s no shortcuts and results don’t happen overnight. Stick to your process for success.