Procrastination, anyone? 5 Ways to nip it in the bud!

My week in pictures: (L-R, T-B) Fab women in the 3-Day Master Planning course; enjoying the long weekend visiting friends and wineries; speaking at NAAAP/Ellevate event on Personal Branding

procrastination

[proh-kras-tuh-ney-shuh n, pruh‐]

noun 
1.the act or habit of procrastinating, or putting off or delaying, especially something requiring immediate attention.

Oh Ill do that later.” “Im just going to make a cup of coffee.” “I better quickly check email (or Facebook!) first…”

We’ve all procrastinated at some point or another – maybe still do. Perhaps procrastination is your middle name! Now no judgment here… sometimes it is due to a valid reason. However, if you have BIG things to do in your life (which you DO!) it’s time to nip this in the bud once and for all.

Just why DO we procrastinate?

If we want to get over it, we must first work through it. Identifying the why is key.

Here are 5 reasons why you might be procrastinating, and some ideas of how to crack the habit.

(Now to be fair, and transparent, I am only writing about these ideas because I have experienced them all at some point or another! Or maybe still am J. Although I am also becoming more disciplined in owning it, and choosing to consciously adopt new thoughts and behaviours.)

 

1. Limiting beliefs and fears, often related to not good enough, fear of failure (or success!)

So we’re allowing ourselves to dream BIG (yay!), make juicy, audacious goals, think about big ideas… however all too suddenly we allow our fears and doubts and limiting beliefs to get in the way.

We all have them. So the question then becomes, are we going to let them win over us?

Here are some tips: Tell the voices in your head to be quiet! Surround yourself with people who lift you up. Ask yourself How true is this really? when you find yourself adopting a limiting belief. Find a champion. Get a coach.

 

2. Too much on the go; overwhelm anyone?!?

It could be that you simply have a whole lot going on in your world right now. Numerous ideas swirling around in your head, lots on the ‘to-do’ list, and even more going on in the other areas of your life. Or, maybe you suffer from shiny object syndrome. Any of these could lead to overwhelm. I get it.

Here are some tips: Write down everything you have going on. Use the important/urgent matrix. Identify your highest priorities. Adopt the 4 Ds and apply to your list – Do, Delegate, Dump, Defer. Breathe!

 

3. The action/idea/project is TOO BIG, or dare I say youre disorganized?

Maybe the task is so big you don’t know where to start. Or, perhaps you are just not on top of your calendar and schedule. How do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.

Here are some tips: Break a big project into smaller, more manageable tasks. Create an action plan. Set realistic and timely goals. Or eat that frog (as Brian Tracy would say), or elephant in this case, first thing in the morning. And USE YOUR CALENDAR!

 

4. Sitting in indecision, perhaps?

Sometimes you are simply procrastinating because you don’t know which way to go, which task to begin first, or what is your highest priority. Or you have so many ideas and to-dos you’re not sure which to choose. (I fall into this category more often than Id care to admit!)

Here are some tips: Stop overthinking it! Making a decision is ALWAYS far better than sitting in indecision. You may be wanting to ensure youre making the perfect choice, or taking the perfect first action however well never know the answer! Nothing is forever, and DONE is better than perfect!

 

5. You simply find the task unpleasant

Often we are inclined to put off something simply because we really don’t want to do it. (Dishes, anyone?!?) However quite often we overestimate the unpleasantness of the task. There are going to be things you have to do in work and in life that may not always be that enjoyable. So it’s time to embrace them!

Here are some tips: Try not to assume its going to be unpleasant. Start with the things youre least looking forward to first. Change your attitude towards the task. Think about the cost of NOT doing it. Reward yourself!

 

So there you have it. Identify WHY you may be procrastinating, and then take the appropriate actions to nip it in the bud!

After all, your big ideas, big goals, big dreams are simply TOO important to put off until tomorrow. And guess what – tomorrow never comes!

“Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone.” ~ Pablo Picasso (Click to tweet it out!) A tad morbid, however SO true!

So start that big project, make that phone call, or declare your big goal TODAY!

Have a FAB week!

Carol Schulte  - high resolution signature

 

 

And now I want to hear from YOU! What is your experience with procrastination? Any tips you’d like to share? I’d love to hear from you in the comments below :-).