Hi and welcome to my channel. My name is Nancy, and today we will go over 11 ways to stop procrastinating so you can get things done. We all are familiar with the following scenario. It is late at night, and you have a deadline due tomorrow, and you have not even started the project. Yet, you keep finding that you are checking your email, browsing your social media, watching videos, or surfing the Internet. You know you should be working, but you don’t feel like doing anything.
Everyone is familiar with the procrastination paradox. When we procrastinate, we waste our free time and put off the essential tasks we should be doing until it’s too late. Then the panic mode comes into play because we wished we had gotten an earlier start on that task.
Many procrastinators spend years of their life looped in this vicious cycle. We delay doing those tasks that we should do and only face it when it becomes unavoidable, and then we repeat this loop all over again. It is a nasty habit that can prevent us from achieving more remarkable results in our life.
You can gain your life back by following these 11 steps to stop procrastinating.
Break Your Work into Small Steps (1)
We often procrastinate because we subconsciously find the work to be done is overwhelming. When we break a task down into multiple parts, we then can focus on one piece at a time. If you still are procrastinating on the task after breaking it down, then break it down further. The goal is to make the task so simple that you will think, “yes, this is so simple that I might as well knock it out now!”.
Let’s look at an example. You are writing a new book. Just thinking about writing the book is an enormous project, and it is overwhelming just thinking about it. But if we break it down into the following sections, it can be easier to accomplish.
- Deciding on the Top
- Creating an Outline
- Drafting the Content
- Writing Chapters #1 to #10
If we look at the project, we can see how easy it will be to accomplish these tasks. You start with the first task, and when we complete it, we go on to the next one.
Change Your Environment (2)
It is amazing how different environments have different impacts on our productivity. For example, when you look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work, or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If you’re going to sleep when you walk into your workspace, you need to change now.
Your work environment needs to inspire you to get those tasks done. However, after a while, you may find that your work environment does not have the same inspiration that it once held. So, periodically, you may need to update your work environment so that you can rejuvenate your mind.
Create a Detailed Timeline With Specific Deadlines (3)
It would be best if you had multiple deadlines for your tasks. Why? Because having one deadline for your work is an invitation for procrastination. You get the impression that you still have time, and then you keep pushing everything back until it is too late.
By breaking down your project into minor tasks, you create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know that you have to finish each job by a specific due date. Remember that your timelines need to be robust too. For example, if you don’t finish this by today, it will jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. You need to create an urgency to act now!!!
It would be best if you broke down your goals into monthly, weekly, then right down to your daily task lists. If you do not complete these tasks on time, then you could end up delaying the project. For example, I know that I have to write one blog article, record and edit one video each week. I have a few days set aside each week to do the writing, recording, and editing. If I fail to complete these tasks on these dates, I will not meet my upload schedule. The last thing I want to do is be editing the video on the day the video is due to be released. I have done that before, and I have vowed never to do that again.
Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops (4)
If you are procrastinating a little too much, then maybe it is because you make it easy to procrastinate.
Start identifying what is sidetracking you and make it challenging to be able to go there. For instance, if you find that Facebook is taking up a lot of your time, consider using an app like rescue time, which will stop you from accessing the app from your computer. Also, disable those automatic notifications from your email, browser, and other programs. Disabling notifications is a great way to get rid of the distractions surrounding you each day.
If all else fails, you can permanently delete the social media accounts distracting you from completing your tasks. Although some people consider this extreme, however, it does work. I did this a few years ago as I did not see the benefit from Facebook, and I spent a lot of time reviewing posts.
Hang Out With People Who Inspire You To Take Action (5)
If you spent just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you would be more inspired to get things done than if you spend those same 10 minutes not doing anything. After all, the people that we are with influence our behaviors. Spending time around highly productive people will cause you to want to be more productive yourself.
Identify the people, friends, or colleagues who motivate you. These people will likely be hard workers and go-getters. The more you hang out with them, the more often you will be inspired by their habits.
How do you hang out with them? You can start by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly through email and social media. Just post a comment on their YouTube channel. Most small YouTubers will respond to comments. However, it is hard for those YouTubers with a large following to respond to every comment.
Use The Buddy System (6) – How To Stop Procrastinating
It is a lot of fun to accomplish a task if you can do it with someone. Your buddy needs to be someone who has his or her own set of gaols. The idea is for both of you to hold the other accountable for your goals and plans. It does not matter if you both have the same goals or not. However, if you do have the same goals, then you can learn from each other.
I talk to my spouse about my goals and the progress I am making to achieve them. It spurs me into taking action.
Tell Others About Your Goals (7)
This step goes along with the last step. The more people you tell about your projects, the more people you can ask to hold you accountable. After all, when you see these people, they will generally ask you about the status of the projects.
For example, I sometimes announce my projects on my YouTube channel, and my viewers will ask me for an updated status on them. It is a great way to keep myself accountable for my goals.
Re-Clarify Your Goals (8) – Stop Procrastinating
If you have been procrastinating for an extended time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you currently are doing. Often we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we fail to update our plans to reflect this.
Don’t be afraid to take a short vacation or getaway for the weekend, and take some time to regroup. Ask yourself what exactly do you want to achieve? How can you get there? What steps do you need to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?
Stop Over-Complicating Things (10)
Stop waiting for the perfect time to do these tasks. I will give you some of the best advice I have ever received. There is never the ideal time to do your jobs. If you keep waiting for the best time, then those goals will never happen.
After all, perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. So, please stop it.
Get a Grip and Do It (11)
Nothing is going to happen unless you take the first step. What is that first step? It is action. You can do all the strategizing and planning that you want, but nothing will happen unless you take action. The only way to stop procrastination is by taking action now. It is never too late to start.
By following these 11 steps, you should be well on your way to stopping your procrastination. If you find yourself going down that same rabbit hole, then stop and take action.
Don’t let failing to take action be a cause of your procrastination. If you take action, then you are not procrastinating.
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