Don’t you wish you could stop procrastinating right now? Imagine if you could stop procrastinating? How would that change your life? You could accomplish all of your goals, obtain anything you’ve ever dreamed of. I’m sure this would make your life better wouldn’t it.
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Tony Robbins asked this rhetorical question at one of his seminars, and I loved it: “why is it that we all know the things we must do, and yet we don’t do them?” Quite an interesting question. But it warrants our attention, and makes a powerful point. So, why is it that we procrastinate?
Procrastination was a problem that frustrated me. I researched countless hours, watched countless videos, and studied hundreds of millionaires, and I finally found the solutions to overcome this very annoying obstacle. Now I don’t struggle with procrastination the same way I used to and in this article, I will give you a surefire guide that will help you to overcome procrastination too. I will discuss 4 causes of procrastination and show you what I learned to fix all of them.
Why We Procrastinate
Before learning how to end procrastination, first we need learn WHY we procrastinate. If we don’t know why we do something, we set ourselves to go into a battle with blinders on.
According to experts who study procrastination, and based off of my own personal experiences, these are some of the top reasons why people procrastinate.
This is critical. Have you ever felt overwhelmed? Do you ever feel like there isn’t enough time in the day to get everything done? Have you ever felt burned out, yet making no significant progress towards completing a task? If you are like me, and most other people, then you have suffered from a lack of a plan. When you have no plan of action, you end up feeling like you have done a lot of work because you do a little bit of everything, but in actuality you realize nothing ever gets done.
It is essential to create a concise plan of action. Put some time aside, and first write down a list of all tasks in your life that must be completed (put the most important activities at the top of the list and lowest ones on the bottom). Then, chose a specific day and time to commit to doing each task.
Here is an example of how a time block schedule should look. You can customize this to fit however works best for you.
7AM-8AM: Wake Up/Shower/Breakfast 8AM-9AM: Gym 9:15AM-9:30AM: Shower
9:30- 10AM: Walk the dog 10-11AM: Work on Business 11-12PM: Read
12PM-12:30PM: Lunch/Relax 12:30PM-1:30PM: Housework 1:30-3:00PM: Shopping
3:30PM-4:00: Relax 4PM-5PM- Study for test 5PM-6PM: Free Block (Free Time)
6PM-11PM: Date night with wife/fun with friends
When you implement this you will look back and notice that your, productivity has sky rocketed. You will be getting a lot done, and thoroughly. BUT, it is imperative to stick to your time block schedule like glue this like glue, don’t cheat, and stay focused on whatever you committed to doing at that time. Do this and you will be golden, it will give you confidence knowing you have a plan and direction in place and you won’t have scatterbrain anymore.
This may sound like an oxymoron, but it is a huge reason for procrastination, and it’s called justification. How many times have you heard someone say this? I’ll quit smoking cigarettes after my last one tonight. Does that ever work? In most cases, no, it fails almost always.
When something needs to get done, we tend to justify why we will procrastinate for “only” one more day.
Solution: The No Justification Rule
When we stop justifying, and simply act. The procrastination stops. Nike says it best: “Just Do It.” Super cliche, but on point. The more we can get into the habit of just doing things right now, literally, the more that will get done. Make a rule to yourself that you will start acting either fast, or immediately. No exceptions, when you make exceptions, that’s when the door to procrastination opens again.
As you see improvement, you will gain confidence and continue to see more and more slow and steady progress. However, I won’t sugarcoat this, you may fail in the beginning, several times, but continue saying this rule to yourself and ingraining it in your head, and overtime you will become a master.
Just don’t beat yourself up if you mess up a few times. It happens. Just keep going.
This is a big one and extremely important to conquer. If you allow someone or something to crush your confidence and effect your self-esteem, you will begin to hesitate and have doubts which will slow down your progress. This has happened to me before, here’s a story. Once I came up with the goal to someday start my own law firm. I immediately began to study endlessly for my LSAT and did so almost everyday. I remember being more motivated than ever. Then, one day someone told me I was crazy for wanting to start my own firm and that it was an unrealistic goal. When I heard that, I started doubting myself. I’d ask myself,”Is he right?”.This questioning led to my study habits slowing down.I allowed him to burst my confidence bubble. Moral of the story, don’t let anyone break your confidence. Believe in yourself.
The Solution: Track Your Victories
To overcome this issue, you have to learn how confidence momentum works. Successful people taught me to start tracking small victories. This has helped me tremendously. Confidence builds off of momentum. So in order to overcome your procrastination, you simply have to keep a mental note of every time you succeeded at not procrastinating. Keep track of everyday you stuck to your schedule and completed your tasks.
Track your victories this along with not allowing other people’s opinions to influence you and watch how your productivity improves. As you see that you can obtain smaller accomplishments you will feel good about yourself and your confidence will grow more slowly and you will be more confident.
Another huge reason why people procrastinate is because they aren’t interested in the task. Either it’s too boring or the activity is very rigorous and requires hard work. Either way, this is a problem especially if the task must be done.
Solution: Make The Bigger Picture Smaller
To fix this problem there are two options. Either you can eliminate the task that you don’t enjoy, or, if it’s something that can’t be avoided, simply split up the task into a smaller series of goals that can be completed.
Oftentimes, when we need to get something done that is difficult or boring, all we see is a huge mountain that needs to be climbed and is full of inconveniences. However, when you split a task into small steps that are easy to complete, suddenly it doesn’t seem so mundane, drawn out, or difficult anymore which results in making the task more doable.
Procrastination is a problem that many of us have struggled with at one time or another. By understanding the reasons you procrastinate you will be able to overcome it, and it is very possible. Create a time block schedule, stop justification, track your victories, and make the bigger picture smaller, and your procrastination should be no more.
Hope this helps you end procrastination today.
Remember to Be Great. Cheers,