If there is one habit we could categorize as being as bad as smoking, if not worse, it is procrastination. While smoking affects you physically, procrastination can cause you severe mental and emotional distress when you realize everything you are working for and all the goals you had kept in mind are not coming to fruition.
Procrastinating not only impacts your professional life, but also your personal one. You probably have an important thesis to complete, a crucial client deadline to meet, or some other project to finish, but you are not able to because of being a chronic procrastinator. Your personal relations can deteriorate if you put everything off for ‘another day’ and don’t work on your promises or meetings with relatives.
It takes a strong will to overcome procrastination and lead a more productive life. There are several ways you can do so. Here are seven of them!
7. Minimize social media usage
Unless and until you use social media websites like Facebook and Instagram for business or creative purposes, there is no point spending hours browsing through different updates, random pics and profiles, and reading clickbait articles. You will be shocked at how many hours are wasted on social networking sites if you do a daily analysis. The mindset of millennials and Gen Z is governed by FOMO or the ‘fear of missing out’ and this actually results in an overload of information that is never required.
Ask yourself- is the latest update about Baby Taimur or some Bollywood-cricket gossip really essential for you to know, especially at that moment? Did you just waste 10 minutes on a listicle by ScoopWhoop that adds no value to your life?
You must have heard of the saying ‘you are what you eat’, referring to the physical effects of eating healthy or junk food. The same thing can be applied to the information on the internet. Not only will you waste time and procrastinate more, but also mess up your mental wiring!
6. Break your work into small blocks
Your work can include different tasks and assignments, with each to be done on the same day in the most efficient manner. Set a time limit for each task, as per their difficulty level, and be determined to complete each task in the allocated time. This will help you stay driven throughout and also ensure that you don’t have to stretch beyond your office hours or plead your manager to allow you to complete the next day.
5. Stop waiting for a perfect time
Most of us think there is a ‘perfect time’ to start something. It can be anything, from learning a skill to enrolling in a course or even getting married. Perfectionism will only increase your anxiety and stress levels. The most challenging thing for a project is often the beginning- just get started! Work on improving later.
4. Create a journal for your tasks
A great trigger for staying motivated is to create a planner or scheduler, and tick off all the tasks that you have completed. You will feel exhilarated on seeing what you have accomplished throughout the day.
3. Find an accountability partner
We tend to go easy on ourselves. Create a pact with a friend or colleague to hold each other accountable by reporting your progress at regular intervals. This can be very motivating and helps you complete your assignments on time.
2. Set a pragmatic approach for your projects
Many times, we set unrealistic targets for ourselves thinking that we would perform best under pressure. This can be as harmful as the feelings of anxiety and fear that surround you and keep you in inertia. For instance, take the example of dieting and weight loss. We make innumerable excuses to avoid exercise or to hit the gym, but if a wedding or birthday celebration looms ahead, we try a crash diet and end up damaging our health. Be pragmatic in your approach.
1. Reward yourself for completing tasks
Once you complete your deadline and are done with your targets, it is time to reward yourself. You can practice positive reinforcement by watching a TV show, having an ice-cream, or going for a walk once you complete your tasks. The award should be motivating enough and you should not cheat!
Found the article useful? Now boost your creative quotient by learning how to be more creative in life!