Last week we explored the fears which can make our procrastination worse and examine how we can overcome them, this week we take a look at the many benefits of overcoming procrastination and will delve into some practical steps you can take to make procrastination a thing of the past.
The benefits of overcoming procrastination
Having lived most of my life as a chronic procrastinator I can testify to the benefits of overcoming procrastination. Take a look at the list below, do these stand out as significantly improving your quality of life? Would you like to see these same benefits in your life? Then read on…
- Living without dreading how you will do the things needed to manage life well
- Being confident in your ability to do difficult tasks
- Being confident in your ability to achieve goals
- Living in line with your ambitions
- Increasing your productivity
- Achieving goals!
- Being able to fulfill your promises to others
Now list all the things that you want to do that if you didn’t procrastinate you could achieve and keep it somewhere you will see it every day.
Now let’s get down to the nitty gritty of how we can overcome procrastination.
This is just a fancy word for keeping a diary full of tasks and appointments. TIP: You will need a page a day diary!
List every task, no matter how small, you need to get done for each day – doing this on a Sunday for the week ahead is really good practice to feel organized and ready to tackle the following week.
Each morning take ten minutes to number each task, putting the most dreaded tasks first. Once you’ve numbered them write times you will do each task and how long it will take. This exercise will help you to see if you are being realistic with how much you aim to get done each day.
Every evening reschedule the tasks that you were not able to complete for another time so you can still meet deadlines and you remain organized with a concrete plan.
Doing diary management in this way will help you to feel more in control of your direction in life and ensure you continually work towards your goals. Remember, don’t just put errands and admin tasks in your diary – also add time to work towards your goals.
If you really can’t face completing a particular task the best thing to do (unless there is an imminent deadline) is to work on another task listed in your diary. This way you are still working through your to do list and remaining productive.
If you feel you are seriously lacking in motivation try doing several short tasks in succession. This will provide you with an immediate boost in motivation as you tick off items one after the other.
Limit distractions and arrange your environment
Ensure that where you work is free from distractions and when you take breaks remember – don’t switch on the TV! As soon as you see a show all your willpower is likely to evaporate so read a magazine or play some music instead.
Equally important is to ensure your environment where you will be doing your work is clutter free, organized and inspirational. This will clear your head whilst uplifting your spirits and boosting your motivation.
Good enough is best
This really cannot be emphasized enough. As I write this I am just putting down what comes to mind, it will be later, once the article is finished, that I edit and proof read. Remember, good enough is best when trying to get the job done, just remember to add time to fine tune things in your diary later.
Have you ever had a diary and if not can you see the advantages of having one? Do you have a clutter and distraction free place to work? Do you struggle to accept that good enough is best? Please share your thoughts in the comments below to gain encouragement, insight and support from our community, we’d love to hear from you.
Stay tuned – next week we conclude the series by looking at how to incorporate a reward system for doing tasks, looks at the advantages of having an ‘accountability buddy’ and explain how we can effectively visualize.