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Stop Procrastinating!


Procrastinating: we all do it, and sometimes it’s just too easy to do. If this is a problem for you, keep reading for tips on how to make procrastination a problem of the past.

How to stop procrastinating: The first 8 steps

Did you know that procrastinating is largely an emotional issue? Thankfully, we are not our emotions and emotions can be worked on. Below are 16 steps to help you overcome this issue.

  1. Why are you procrastinating? Is it because the job is boring? Is it because you’re afraid to do it wrong? After you determine the reason behind the hesitation, consider the following solutions:
    • Delegate the task
    • Eliminate the task
    • Reframe the task
    • Restructure the task (so it’s easier)
    • Or just get started (we’ll cover more about this later)
  2. Remind what procrastination costs you. Write it down if that helps. Some ideas to get you started include time and money.
  3. Identify the story. A common excuse includes being too tired, doing it tomorrow, or that it’s not important. Most of these can be addressed with some self-discipline. Think of the excuse you’re making, and write down how you can overcome it.
  4. Rewrite your story. After you identify the excuse, it’s time to reframe how you think. For example, not having enough time can be translated to “I find and make time for whatever I’m committed to.” Affirmations can help here, also.
  5. Remind yourself why you are doing these tasks. Likely the reason behind tasks have to do with a larger vision.
  6. Know how you distract yourself.
  7. Explore (a little deeper) why you distract yourself. Accept it and move on (so you can recognize the distraction later).
  8. Record everything you do. Have you ever wrote down everything you do in a day? This way you have metrics behind actual work and things you do to distract yourself.

How to stop procrastinating: Steps 8-16

  1. Set a clear intent behind everything you do.
  2. Prepare your environment. Runners often lay their running gear by their bed the night before if they want to run in the morning.
  3. Start small. Big tasks will stay big if you don’t start chipping away.
  4. Create quick wins. By celebrating the small ones, you’ll form a habit.
  5. Just get started. In her book, The 5-Second Rul, Mel Robbins states that you have a 5-second window to take action before your mind talks you out of it. If you notice yourself hesitating, count down from five (and be sure to start before you hit 0)!
  6. Use your time wisely. Prioritize your most important tasks to be done first thing in the morning.
  7. Visualize yourself completing this tasks. Studies show, this works.
  8. Look for accountability. Tell a friend or a partner you want to have a task completed by a certain date. They can help you to stay focused.

Inspiration for this blog came from “Master Your Emotions: A Practical Guide to Overcome Negativity and Better Manage Your Feelings,” by Thibaut Meurisse.

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