It’s easy to fall into the habit of procrastination. When something doesn’t have to be done right away, it seems like there would be little harm of putting off work today that isn’t due until tomorrow, right? The problem with this thought pattern is that it establishes a habit of procrastinating that makes it much easier to put off overdue work as well.
Here’s how you can defeat the habit of procrastination today so that your day today and tomorrow can be extremely productive:
1. Set new deadlines for yourself. When a deadline seems like a long way away, it is very easy to put off doing something for a day or two… or three. People are deadline-orientated and so they will not work until they absolutely must work, which then causes a large push to get a task done right at the deadline. Try instead to set new deadlines for yourself on long-term projects, daily deadlines that have achievable goals attached to them. This way you’ll get work done every day and won’t have to rush at the end.
2. Why do you want to procrastinate on this task? Though procrastination is often associated with laziness, it is often associated with specific emotional states more than physical inactivity. Most commonly, a task is put off because it is:
By examining the emotional states that are causing you to procrastinate, you can determine what your unique issue is and develop a coping mechanism to counter it. By casting away these negative emotions, you probably won’t enjoy the work more, but it will get done today! There’s also a great reward at the end – nothing feels better than accomplishing a task that you’d normally procrastinate on!
3. There will be roadblocks. No matter how much a project is planned in advance, there are going to be roadblocks that occur that will attempt to make you put off doing the work that needs to get done. It could be as simple as that coworker standing at your desk with a cup of coffee, endlessly discussing the merits of white pants over blue pants. On the other hand, you could end up with a technical issue that prevents you from doing work the way you normally would. By planning for roadblocks ahead of time and creating escape scenarios that will let you keep working, you’ll be able to stay ahead of the temptation to procrastinate.
4. Be resilient with your resistance. Excuses are a dime a dozen and everyone has got some good ones. Stand up to these excuses and resist procrastination. When you do, it will flee from you! Others may try to drag you down or encourage you to put some work off too. Just stand firm, discuss your plans to get the job done, and then knuckle down on the task. That comes when you make getting your job completed a top priority.
Procrastination can strike at any time! The good news is that you can defeat procrastination before it ever takes a foothold on your life with these tips. Implement them today and see just how productive you can be!