Solutions to Procrastination – Free eBook
Do you need help to overcome procrastination? Do you find that the number of tasks you need to complete feel impossible to achieve? The idea of putting off a task until a later date seems the easy option, but one day turns into a week, and pretty soon you have fallen behind on too many tasks to ever get caught up properly.
There are three simple techniques that can help you overcome this habit of procrastinating , which is the sworn enemy of productivity and has often be sited as the reason behind a career being derailed. If you are able to stay on top of your duties as a manager day in and day out, you will keep up with deadlines and never feel the pressure that comes with putting off important jobs.
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.
If you are someone that is prone to procrastinate over how to perform your tasks, consider the following simple methods of getting things done in a timely and productive manner.
Morning To-Do List
One effective method of staying on track is to make a to-do list each morning when you begin work. That list will include everything you need to do that day, including work duties and personal ones. When you look at it with fresh eyes first thing in the morning, you can logically prioritize the tasks and check them off one by one. If you wait until later in the day to get a list together, you might be feeling overloaded, stressed or tired and decide to put some of it off for another day.
Get in a routine of making your list while doing something relaxing like having a cup of coffee at your desk before you start on your emails. This will get your morning off on the right foot, and set you up for a day of productivity.
Hardest Tasks First
The human brain naturally fatigues during the day and it gets harder the think clearly, even under good circumstances. If you hold a stressful position that requires you to be going in many different directions at once, your brain will fatigue even faster during the day. If you wait to do your hardest tasks until the end of the day, you will have more trouble with them and likely end up frustrated.
By using the to-do list method to get your tasks done, you can aim to tackle the easy ones at the end of the day. You won’t need to think as much and you can coast through the finish line. Having the hard tasks complete and in your rearview mirror is a good feeling that will propel you to complete the rest of your list.
Sometimes, we just get stuck on a task and can’t figure out how to solve the problem. For cases like this, a ten-minute rule is a good idea. The method is simple – start working on your challenging task and keep an eye on the clock. If you spend ten minutes on it and are unable to make any headway at all, stop. From there, you can either ask someone for assistance or just take a break and come back to it later.
Staring at the same project for hours on end with no progress will make you frustrated and waste time in the process. Stick with the ten-minute rule when dealing with a stubborn task and you won’t waste you whole day on any one job.
Procrastination is a minor habit that can turn into a major problem. Your job performance can be destroyed by too much procrastination, especially on tasks that have specific timelines associated with them. If you want to know more about breaking this habit then download our free eBook ‘Overcoming Procrastination’.
By having a plan in place to monitor your procrastination, you can slowly change your habits to where you are no longer tempted to put things off for another day. Remember, work you finish today doesn’t have to be done tomorrow, and that is a good feeling. Use these procrastination technique to stay on task and keep your career pointed in the right direction.
Everyone has a task, or two, on their ‘To Do’ list that they’d rather just forget or ignore. No matter what tactic you use it never goes away and eventually you just have to do it!
Leaving those boring or pointless tasks to the last minute often made me feel resentful. Then one day a colleague helped me to see how destructive my attitude was and gave me some excellent advice.
‘Stop wasting precious time berating the fact that I’d got a boring task. Instead use that time to decide which way to get it crossed of my list!’ Essentially there are three ways to approach such tasks and portray a professional image. You can meet it head on, develop through delegation, or break it into motivational chunks.
This made me realize that the way I was managing myself was visible to others and if I continued with this mode I would damage my prospects. So why I was letting my emotions manage me and not the other way around. To find the answers I looked at how my self-management image was perceived by others and ended up creating my own Self-Management Checklist to assess this.
Meet it Head on
That is when I developed my three pronged attacked for those boring tasks we all have. My first one it just to meet the problem head on and avoid any procrastination. The task may lack any challenge or be routine but it does fit into the ‘bigger picture’ of why my role is needed.
I know what needs to be done to perform it so check there are no new requirements, don’t make assumptions nothing has changes. Set a time aside and focus on completing the work needed in that time allocated, getting the task done.
Double ‘D’ Approach
Can this task be given to another person? By delegating this task does it develop them? If I got a Yes to my double ‘D’ question my approach was to then plan how and when to assign this task.
This did not get me off the hook, I was still the one responsible for completing the task, but I no longer had to perform all the work. My role became one of giving a good brief and monitoring its progress following the principles of delegation.
Break into chunks
If neither of these approaches suited the nature of the boring task then my final strategy was to break the task down into workable chunks. By carefully planning my time for each chunk I was able to complete the task and keep focused without falling into my old trap of procrastination.
Sometimes the chunks would involve looking for ways to use others’ expertise to accomplish the task bringing a new perspective in the process. Each chunk of work focused my energy and attention in a positive way showing my adaptability and initiative.
Learning how to control the influence my emotions had on my approach to a task enabled me to channel my energies into performing the task or resolving a problem remaining motivated throughout.
Overcoming my habit of procrastination played a key role in each of these strategies. Click on the button to download our free Procrastination eBook.
- Continually putting off important tasks is called ‘procrastination.’ It results in a sense of guilt that causes a loss of motivation and personal productivity.
- Almost everyone is guilty of procrastination occasionally.
- High-priority tasks are usually difficult or time-consuming and it is often simpler to find easier, less important tasks to do instead.
- Procrastination is a learned behavior that has paid dividends in the past. Avoiding dealing with something you don’t want to do straightaway can be a rewarding strategy, even if only in the short term.
- There are seven common triggers that lead people to put off certain tasks.
- Our free eBook will help you to identify and deal with the ones that affect you the most.