We all procrastinate at some point in our lives. The phrase “i will do it later” has become an anthem for some people. Putting it off until “later” is not something uncommon we say to ourselves, especially when Facebook, Twitter and Blackberry messenger are a click away.
But when it comes to work, procrastination definitely has some expensive costs.
Understanding the causes and temptations of procrastination is the first step to eliminating it.
1. Create faster deadlines
Instead of thinking you will work on your project for three hours every morning, determine when you want certain tasks completed.
“If your boss gives you an assignment, he doesn’t say, ‘Work on this each day.’ No, she says, ‘I want this ready by next Friday.’
2. Map out all of your deadlines on one calendar
That way, you’ll see that your tasks are all interrelated. If your task today affects your task tomorrow, you will experience an “urgency to act.”
3. Create challenging tasks
If your tasks are too simple, you will lose enthusiasm which is definitely necessary for completing projects.
4. Make sure the tasks are reasonable
Although challenging tasks are needed to maintain interests, they should also be reasonable as to not discourage you – which would result in abandonment before completion.
5. Change your Environment
If your working environment makes you want to snuggle up and take a nap, change it immediately.
6. Find a friend
Having a companion forces you to have someone else to answer to other than yourself.
While it’s not necessary that both parties have the same goals, it will increase your chances of completing the task if that’s the scenario.
7. Hang out with people who don’t procrastinate
Hang out with people who inspire you. They’ll infuse some of their drive and spirit into your work ethic.
8. Hang out with people who are living your dream
Connect with people who have already achieved your dream (if you can) and seek advice on how they accomplished it.
9. Announce your goals to others
If your friends and colleagues know about your projects, they are bound to ask you about them on a regular basis -serving as an accountable reminder.
10. Eliminate distractions
Make it more difficult for you to procrastinate by eliminating any sign of distraction.
For example, if Facebook is causing you to procrastinate, deactivate it for a short period of time. If BBM is the problem, turn off your data services till you’re done.
11. Reward yourself
If you spend too much time on something, you may start to resent it.
Realize that hard work should be rewarded with a nice meal or drink at your favorite spot or a trip to the movies.
12. Re-plan failed plans
Some goals weren’t meant to be achieved since we “outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves” so the best action to take is to alter those goals to reflect your own growth.
Take a step back and decide what it is exactly that you want to achieve and what steps you should take to get there.
13. Stop waiting for the perfect time.
Just do it now!