Overcoming procrastination is something most of us encounter at some stage or another in our life. Sure, there’s the phrase “never put off until tomorrow that which you can do today” but often the temptation is to do the exact opposite of that and put some things off at least until tomorrow and ideally forever.
These strategies for overcoming procrastination can help you stop procrastinating as much…
1. Just do it
Personally, I find this the best method by far. If I start something now, this instant, it doesn’t give me a chance to procrastinate on it. And then once I’ve started, it’s not usually as bad as I feared.
So the next time you hear all those voices in your head, urging you to do something (anything!) else other than what you know deep down you’re supposed to be doing, ignore them and start the project.
2. Divide and conquer
Sometimes we procrastinate because the task seems too large to ever be able to complete.
If that’s the case for the task you’re putting off, split it into bite size chunks. Tasks you can complete in maybe 15 or 30 or 60 minutes. You’ll start overcoming your procrastination this way because it’s less easy to put off something that will “only” take a few minutes. Plus it’s kind-of built into human nature to complete things once we’ve started because the nagging voice that was in our head saying “no, not now” turns into one that’s asking why we haven’t finished it yet. A kind of internal “are we there yet” that actually pushes us to completing that previously impossible task.
3. Employ the Pomodoro technique
This is a time management technique that recognises that most humans have a short attention span.
Set a timer for 25 minutes and work on the task for that time. Nothing else. No Facebook. No Twitter. No texting or checking emails or other messages.
Which may sound almost impossible at first but the 25 minute time length is good because it’s not too long – it’s about the length of a short television show after the adverts.
And at the end of the 25 minutes, you award yourself a 5 minute break. So there’s an end in sight and a reward when you reach the end.
Repeat that cycle 4 times then reward yourself with a longer break – maybe 15 to 30 minutes.
Do that with whatever it was you’ve been procrastinating forever about and you’ll be whizzing through things in next to no time.
4. Hypnotise yourself
This will help get your mind “on board” with the idea that procrastination isn’t necessarily the best option.
It’s easy to do – you could easily fit in listening to the short, 17 minute, audio I suggest below in almost any time schedule.
And – you’ll like this bit – there’s no real effort involved. All you have to do is play the MP3 to yourself and let the hypnosis do all the seemingly hard work of retraining your mind to stop procrastinating.