You have a deadline approaching but instead, you are scrolling through social media, checking emails, watching videos, doing anything to avoid starting your task. You know you should be working, but you don’t feel like doing anything.
We all procrastinate; we tend to put off urgent tasks and matters most of the time. But when it’s time to deliver, we start running around not knowing where to start.
Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here are some steps in which to overcome procrastination.
Set simple, achievable goals
Nothing is more overwhelming than having multiple large tasks with urgent deadlines. A way to overcome the stress generated by these huge tasks is to break them down and prepare a list of smaller tasks and start crossing things off your list. Suddenly it seems very manageable. Crossing off these small tasks not only reduces stress but will also help you feel more accomplished.
Create a timeline/schedule
Time management is a crucial skill to help overcome procrastination. Having one deadline can be overwhelming. Break your task down into small chunks. Make a schedule of what needs to be done and estimate how much time is needed to complete each task. Once you have your schedule set stick to your deadlines.
Start with the tough tasks
It is best to complete your most challenging task first. Because guess what? Once you do it, it’s over! Everything after will seem easier and will take you less amount of time to complete. If you keep pushing back your biggest assignment, you will never get it done. It’s best to just buckle down and do it.
Get rid of distractions
It is important to rid of all potential disruptions before you begin working so you don’t get sidetracked halfway through your task. Every ding from your digital devices will distract you. Turn off these devices until you complete your task. Distractions can also be external sources like a lot of chatter from family, friends or coworkers. Try listening to music or white noise to cancel out their chatter. If possible, change your environment and go somewhere where you can clear your mind and be distraction free like your local library or a coffee shop.
Find a source of inspiration
We spend a lot of time with the people we work or go to school with and their personalities and behaviours can start to rub off on us. Surround yourself with people, friends or colleagues who you feel are go-getters and hard workers. Being around positive people will influence you with their enthusiasm and drive.
Come up with consequences
Can’t convince yourself to get things done? Try coming up with a consequence for not completing your tasks like no junk food for a week. This can help keep you motivated to check things off of your list. It’s easier to pay attention when something is at stake.
Restart your day after lunch
Ever have those days where the morning flies by but you felt like you haven’t crossed anything off of your to-do list? Restart your day after lunch. Assess how much you have accomplished, how much you need to complete, and what the most important task is and have a productive afternoon.
Have a healthy diet
Your energy levels will differ according to the diet you follow. Having a balanced diet will help boost your productivity and give you the energy needed to face your day head-on.
Don’t underestimate yourself
When faced with your to-do list, never say “I can’t do it.” When you tell yourself you can’t do something, it won’t happen. Think positive. Believe in yourself. Having a positive attitude will help you reach your goals.
When you finish a task, try to reward yourself. Reward the achievements, whatever it is you finish.
Do something that makes you happy like buy yourself a snack, treat yourself to a nice meal or go for a walk. You deserve it!