what can we do about it?
“So, Michelle, I know you’ve told us all the things that procrastinators do, but what can we do about it?”
Well, I talk a lot about this in my book, “Busy Being Busy” and I do suggest that you take a closer look at what might be causing it. There may be some real legitimate issues. There may just be some mental blocks that need to be overcome, maybe some limiting beliefs that’s tied to how you see yourself, your self-worth. Whatever it is, I want you to try to find the time to really recognize what it is. They say knowing is half the battle.
And then, how to tackle your procrastination is first things first. Make a list of everything you have to do. And again, be real realistic about that list of what you can and can’t get done. Then write a statement of intention. Talk about, “What is it that I really want to accomplish here? What is my passion? I’m wanting to write a book by the end of this year.” What is it that you want to do? Figure out what that is so that you can then break it down into those goals. And those goals, they need to be realistic, but they can be broken down into sub-goals. Again, you don’t have to conquer everything at once in order to overcome procrastination. Little bits at a time will still get you to your goal.
Also, I mentioned breaking it down into little pieces and put into specific tasks so that you know when you wake up and you have a list, “This is what I have to get done today,” and prioritize those things. Make your tasks meaningful, meaning, try to get into it. Again, if we’re doing things we don’t really love to do, maybe find a way of making them a little more fun. If we have to clean the house, maybe put some music on. If we have to take a long trip for business or fly in an airplane, maybe find something that is a little rewarding or meaningful to you to help get that task done.
And then reward yourself. You don’t have to do a huge project to reward yourself. Everybody gets a consequence if you submit a project late, right? If you don’t hit a deadline, that’s a bad thing. But you know what…what do they do for the people who do meet a deadline? Nobody is celebrating that. So give yourself a reward. If you have done something and accomplished something, give yourself a reward. If your reward is maybe spending time online on Facebook, great. If it is watching TV, if it’s making a phone call, you know what that is for you. Give yourself a reward, because the little goals will make the big goals a reality.
Then, eliminate the tasks that you never plan to do, and this is where you need to be honest. We can all think of these big grand goals, and they are real goals, but you’re not willing to do the work to get there, be honest with yourself and get it off your to-do list.
Also, estimate the amount of time you think it’s going to take to complete the task. And then, because if you are a procrastinator, increase that amount by about 100%. That is the reality, because you want to make sure you have enough time to complete the project so you don’t feel as though you procrastinated it way, you wasted that time. So much of who we are is based on how we feel about ourselves, so we want to set ourselves up for success and not failure.