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Book Description - ISBN 978-1-62620-984-8 (38 Pages)
Almost everyone is guilty of procrastination occasionally. High priority tasks are usually difficult or time consuming and it is often easier to find straightforward, less important tasks to do instead. This free eBook is a practical guide to overcoming your own tendency to procrastinate and to help your team members to overcome theirs.

Chapter 1 - Stop Procrastinating
Procrastination can be defined as the act of replacing high-priority actions with tasks of lower priority, or doing something from which one derives enjoyment, and thus putting off important tasks to a later time or voluntarily delaying an intended course of action despite expecting to be worse off for the delay.

Chapter 2 - Symptoms of Procrastination
There are several symptoms of procrastination including: trivializing the task, blaming external factors, assigning spurious priority to another task, distracting yourself with routine or inconsequential work or convincing yourself that you will perform the task better if you leave it until the last minute.

Chapter 3 - Why People Procrastinate
The reason that people procrastinate is quite simple. It provides an instant reward in the shape of a relief from immediate stress. In other words, by not starting a task that you know will prove stressful, you feel a sense of relief that, though temporary, is nonetheless very real and satisfying.

Chapter 4 - Dealing with Boring or Pointless Tasks
This trigger plays a role in many instances of procrastination and is often the root cause of other triggers like resentment or feeling overwhelmed. After all it is only natural to feel angry about being asked to do something that you feel is boring or pointless.

Chapter 5 - Dealing With Tasks Involving Confrontation
A fear of confrontation is something that causes many people to put of starting a task which may lead to conflict with a subordinate, a co-worker, a customer or a supplier.

Chapter 6 - Tasks You Resent Being Given
This is often a symptom rather than a root cause of procrastination. If you feel that the task is boring, pointless, unpleasant, overwhelming, or unclear, or you are afraid of failing at it, then you would naturally resent being given responsibility for it.

Chapter 7 - Tasks That Appear Overwhelming
The best way to deal with jobs like this is to assume that you are right - it really is an impossible task for you to do with the time and resources available. You need to sit down with the intention of quantifying the work involved so you can prove this to your boss.

Chapter 8 - Tasks You Don't Know How to Begin
This is another very common trigger, particularly when there are two or more equally valid approaches to the task. It could be that: you don't feel you have the authority to make this fundamental decision, you don't have the information you need to make it or you simply can't decide on the 'best' course of action.

Chapter 9 - Tasks You Are Afraid of Completing
Fear of success may sound like an unlikely reason to procrastinate. After all, why would anyone fear success? This is one trigger that people find difficult to admit to because it implies that they are fearful of the consequences of their achievements. However, there are at least four valid reasons for fearing success.

Chapter 10 - Lack of Motivation
Procrastination has several possible triggers and it can be difficult to isolate the main cause in each case. It is also possible to confuse procrastination with a general lack of motivation and they are to some extent intertwined and mutually reinforcing.

You will learn:
  • The psychological basis of procrastination and why it is so difficult to overcome.
  • Why quick fix solutions to this problem never work.
  • To identify the seven triggers that cause people to put off important tasks.
  • To isolate the origin of procrastination on a case-by-case basis.
  • Practical and usable tactics to beat this productivity killer.

Today's Top Picks for Our Readers:
Recommended by Recommended by NetLine

A 'Scientific' Approach to the Problem of Procrastination
This is the first time management book I've read that properly explains why people procrastinate and put off things they know they should just get on with. The authors obviously know what they are talking about and quite honestly this book is better than anything else I've read on this subject.
Karl Maraspini

I'm Glad I Bothered Reading This
I found this book very helpful and there is no waffle. I have always had problems with procrastination and perfectionism and I've struggled to overcome them without ever really succeeding. This book gave me a way to get to the root cause of my problem and tackle it in a systematic way rather than just dealing with the worst symptoms.
Jon Wilson

Treats Procrastination as a Psychological Issue
What I appreciate about this book is that it treats procrastination as a psychological issue, which is something I failed to initially understand. It does a good job of discussing the various psychological triggers that cause a person to procrastinate. Then it goes on to discuss practical and usable methods to avoid procrastination. Some of the methods are over simplified in this book and I think they deserve more discussion, but most of the points are quite relevant and applicable.

I personally think the author hit the nail on its head when stating that putting off important tasks results in guilt, which eventually causes low motivation and productivity. I noticed that even though I was a good performer at work, there were times in between when I would feel down. I was not able to put my finger on it until I read this book. See, the thing is that I always completed my tasks on time and met deadlines, however, what I could have completed well before the deadline, I waited till the end to finish. This caused unnecessary anxiety and low motivation. I would often feel guilty about not having completed the job even though I had time left.

Upon reviewing the information in this book, I realized that I am the kind of person who would rather get things done earlier rather than later. So instead of wasting time, I could just get complete the task and then be worry free at the end. I realized the key factors that made me procrastinate were all listed in this book under the list of bad habits.

To begin with, I usually kept changing the task at hand to look busy. I then filled my TO DO list with low importance items. This made me feel like I was being productive, but I knew at the back of my mind that I still had to complete more important tasks in order to reach my goal. I even went to the extent of helping others with simpler tasks, just as it is mentioned in this book. I felt like the author read my mind when writing this one because I did it regularly in order to avoid high priority tasks. So seeing these reasons listed in front of me in this book helped me come to the conclusion that I'm not the only one who has this problem and more importantly, I can fix the issue of procrastination.
Shane B

Defined Exactly What My Problem Was
Even though I'm fairly good when it comes to completing tasks on time, it's always the overly difficult and complex tasks I have trouble completing. I keep putting them off until it is too late or I have to rush at the end to complete them. To solve this recurring issue, I opted to read up on how to solve it once and for all. One of my friends referred me to a free online resource by the name of Free Management Books. After hearing the word "free", I scrambled to get my hands on this book that my friend was so optimistic about.

I visited the website and was pleasantly surprised to find books on different management topics. However, I went straight for the kill and downloaded 'Overcoming Procrastination'. I soon discovered what my friend was going on about. This free resource gripped me right from the get go because it defined exactly what my problem was. That created an instant connection with me and from thereon, I took the book seriously. Best of all, it is a little over 30 pages so it doesn't require you to spend days reading and understanding it.
Sammi Taylor

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Time Management Skills Examples - These include adopting a 'one-touch' approach to incoming paperwork, optimizing your workspace for efficiency and developing an efficient filing system for electronic documents.

Time Management Strategies - If you want to learn to manage your time better, the first step is to document how you are currently spending it. Surprisingly, most of us do not have an accurate picture of how we spend our time. We may think that we know how long we spend on each task, but these impressions usually turn out to be inaccurate when compared to a detailed time log.

Time Management Tips - Effective time management involves learning to focus on the right things whilst letting go of some of the less important tasks. Whilst time management forwards many proven techniques, you will need to develop a strategy that suits your own needs.

Effective Time Management - Interruptions during the working day not only take up your time, they also have a secondary impact - in that they cost valuable minutes as you get back into what you were doing before the interruption. Some workplace interruptions may be unavoidable, but many are not and you shouldn't feel guilty about reducing your exposure to interruptions as the result will be an increase in your overall efficiency.

Procrastination Help - While we all know that we shouldn't procrastinate, sometimes it is hard to make the right decision and tackle the problems that are in front of us. This can be especially difficult for someone in a management position who might have difficult decisions to make that have real-world consequences for the staff and the business as a whole.

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