What is procrastination? It is an act where a person chooses to delay or defer an action to a later time. It can happen to anyone involving anything from work, studies, household chores or even running errands. Fortunately, you can start taking action by following these 8 Ways To Stop Procrastination.
1) Eliminate Distractions
By distractions, we mean anything that could deter you from doing your work. If possible, turn off your smartphone or at least put it on silent mode. Besides, those notifications coming from your Facebook, Gmail and WhatsApp would only drag you further into deep procrastination mode.
2) Change Your Work/Study Environment
Your environment plays a huge part regardless of working or studying. It can make or break your productivity. For instance, take a look at your work desk and your overall surrounding? Is it messy and cluttered? Is your room stuffy and somewhat uncomfortable? Whatever that makes you procrastinate, consider changing your environment. You can either head down to your favourite cafe or even a co-working space. Doing so not only enables you to clear your mind but also spark some inspiration in you at the same time!
3) Set A Deadline For Each Task
Deadlines are important because you will be more proactive to accomplish the task within the time frame. Here’s why: imagine you are given a three-day period to complete a single task. Somehow you figure that you are able to finish the task one day before the deadline. And for those two days prior, you choose to delay and procrastinate by doing something else instead. Now, you may or may not complete the given task at the last minute. But did you ever give it a thought that it might do you more harm than good? What if the task, say, is filled with lots of spelling errors because you were only rushing to get the job done, no matter how sloppy it would turn out to be? So, make it a habit to set a specific time and date within the deadline. Finish it early if possible. That way, you will have more time to make changes if needed.
4) Take A Small Step
Are you procrastinating because you are afraid of a certain task? Instead of overthinking it, just take a breath and take the first step, as “a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”. If you don’t start at all, nothing will happen. Not to mention you won’t see any result. So take that first little step and just do it.
5) Try The Two-Minute Rule
The goal of this particular rule is plain and simple. Just do anything that needs to be done within a two-minute timeframe. It doesn’t have to be an exact two minutes. If a certain task requires more time to accomplish, just keep doing it even if it takes 5, 10 or 30 minutes. If you keep the momentum and turn the two-minute rule into a habit, don’t be surprised if your productivity has increased. No wonder this particular rule, which is inspired by the renowned productivity consultant David Allen’s GTD (Getting Things Done), proved to be a popular methodology.
6) Consider The Big Picture
The next time you choose to procrastinate, consider this: Why are you doing this in the first place? Here’s a clear example: Imagine if you are a freelance graphic designer given a task to design a 10-page booklet within a week. The client who gave you the task would pay you a handsome amount of money after completion. Now, imagine that money you end up making would allow you to buy, say, a brand new laptop or a new office chair. That means instead of focusing on the stress and amount of time needed to complete the task, think of the benefits it will bring to you.
7) Reward Yourself
Having a tough time motivating yourself to start a task? Try this method: Assuming you are given an assignment that needs to be completed by tomorrow morning, you can choose to reward yourself like “If I manage to finish the assignment by today instead, I will able to watch tonight’s new episode of a TV show on Netflix.” The reward can be anything at all as long as it motivates you to start your work.
8) Learn To Overcome Perfectionism
Are you demanding perfect results? For instance, you want to start a new blog post. But you barely made it through the first paragraph because you are too busy finding the right words to put everything together. The truth is, perfectionism can wear you down. You tend to be nitpicking, extremely fussy and micro-managing yourself at every little detail. You may even experience stress and anxiety, worrying about whether your work will achieve a tip-top result. This can lead to procrastination. So, stop trying to be perfect and start doing it instead.