Procrastination

The act or habit of procrastinating, or putting off or delaying, especially something requiring immediate attention.

It’s like the devil and the angel of your conscience summed up in one word and boy that devil really is a little monster. Chipping away telling you “It’s alright, you’ve got time. You don’t need to do that task just yet teeheeheehee”.

The fact is the things you procrastinate over are usually the things which:

  • you either need to do but don’t like doing,
  • you don’t want to do but know you have to do, or
  • you have a somewhat fluid deadline for completing and it’s only when the hard deadline nears that you pull your finger out and get on with it.

But you have the power to make procrastination a thing of the past, and here’s two ideas to help with that.

Procaffination

The inability to make a decision until you’ve had a cup of coffee.

Coffee, tea, mocha, water – the act of physically getting these before starting a task is actually a very good tool for trading off a perceived like against a perceived dislike (as well as providing some all-important hydration).

When getting these drinks what you’re saying to yourself is “I’m going to give myself 5 minutes to do something I’d like to do before I go and do that task I need to do which I’m not over the moon about doing”.

The trick here is to remember you’ve made this deal with yourself and stick to it. Don’t let 5 minutes become 10. Don’t let 1 ‘like task’ become 2 or 3.

Instead, do your 1 ‘like task’ then go straight into finishing that task you could procrastinate over, and use the next ‘like task’ (check WhatsApp, Twitter, etc) as your reward when you’ve finished.

You’ll feel a whole lot better about approaching the ‘need to do’ task knowing there are things you’d like to do before and after it.

Proactivation

The act of working towards something you’re passionate about achieving and just getting on with everything (also a word I’ve made up).

Consider for a moment the times when you’ve been busy working on a project or task that you’re really enjoying and want to do…

Now think about how you felt when one of those ‘need to do’ menial tasks (the type you normally procrastinate over when you’re not that busy) had to be done…

My guess is during all the things you were enjoying doing the menial task was ‘just done’ with minimal fuss. You may even have struggled to recall even how you felt about completing that menial task. There’s a reason for this.

When busy with things we enjoy doing, we still recognise the importance of ‘need to do’ tasks but don’t take the time to consider whether we like them or not.

So find something you’re passionate about wanting to achieve, something that will fill your day with things you enjoy doing that will ultimately lead you to achieving your goal, and go do those things.

You’ll live in the moment, enjoy what you’re doing because you want to do it and you’ll procrastinate a whole lot less.

 

Graham

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