Procrastination is ultimately the worst habit for success.
It holds you back from accomplishing what you need to, at the level you want to, to get to your goals and dreams.
Waiting until the last minute leaves tasks rushed, messy, and sometimes totally unaccomplished.
But once you find yourself falling into the procrastination hole it can be very hard to dig yourself out and push past the procrastination habits.
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I found myself struggling with procrastination the same way a lot of people do- because of perfectionism. Sounds contradictory but I would be so dedicated to making every thing perfect that I would be so scared of not achieving the perfectionism that I would procrastinate on the whole project.
Or just feel that you are procrastinating for any other number of reasons? Then read all about how I dealt with my procrastination habit and learned to get past it.
Below are 7 steps to start taking to kick your procrastination problem to the curb!
Bonus Tip: make sure to get a planner that you love! This will help keep you organized and on top of deadlines.
Step 1: Stop falling for distractions
Giving into the distractions around you is the “easiest” way to procrastinate. You can just glance down at your phone and have hours of distractions easily available to help you procrastinate.
To train yourself to never fall for distractions you have to start by setting yourself up for success. Take the necessary precautions to make your work area distraction free (and yes that includes putting away/turning off your cell phone).
I have a whole guide here on minimizing distractions and making a better work environment so you don’t procrastinate.
Step 2: Learn how to write to do lists
Having a solid ideas of what and when things need to be accomplished before you even start is so helpful for not procrastinating.
It’s easy to convince yourself that things can be dealt with later. But if you have it written on list that HAS to be dealt with that day/week/month etc. then you are way less likely to push it off.
To-do lists sound really basic but there are tips and tricks you can take for writing efficient to do lists that help you avoid procrastinating and stay on top of deadlines.
*Bonus tip: using a cute to do list notepad can bring you a little extra joy and I highly recommend it.
Step 3: Stop multitasking
Multitasking can seem like a great way to get more done but don’t fall for it!
Multitasking actually makes you take longer to accomplish both tasks compared to if you completed one at a time. Think about it- your brain has to constantly switch gears when you are multitasking which takes time even if it’s just seconds, and those seconds add up quickly.
Multitasking also makes it more likely that you will make a mistake while you’re completing the tasks. Set yourself up for a procrastination free and mistake free day by accomplishing one task at a time.
Step 4: Always know what step is next
The best way to make sure you stick to your plan and don’t fall into a procrastination pit is to know what is your next step.
Don’t allow time in between tasks where you are debating what to do next because it is so easy to get distracted in that decision time and procrastinate rather than working towards completing your next goal.
Hourly planners can help with this! It can take a little bit to get into the swing of it but knowing what you are doing each hour really helps eliminate that unhelpful decision time.
Step 5: Stop Fearing Failure
This is an extra important step for all the perfectionists out there.
Fearing failure can make procrastinating even more tempting.
You are scared of failing at the task so you avoid doing it all together. But just remember- that won’t help you succeed or achieve your goals!
Better to try and fail than not try at all (that’s what I tell myself when I fall into the procrastination hole).
Step 6: Take care of small things right away
When your to-do list looks impossibly long it’s important not only for your success but also for your mind to cross some items off the list.
It’s important for your success because completing little tasks earlier in the day frees you up to focus and truly commit to the larger tasks at hand.
It’s also important for your mental health because crossing things off your to do list is encouraging and motivating. If you start your day with a 4 hour task then it’ll be 4 hours before you cross anything off and you still have all those other small tasks weighing on you.
Step 7: Delegation
Delegating tasks that you are able to is super important for getting past procrastination.
Delegating helps you prioritize what you need to accomplish and focus on while freeing yourself up by handing some tasks to others who are able to accomplish them. Delegation is so important in the work place but also in your home!
For more information and resources on learning how and when to delegate then check this out.
My biggest tip for getting organized and getting things done is to get, and stick to, a daily/weekly planner. I recommend Me and My Big Ideas Happy Planner. I’ve used it for years and I love it!
Procrastination can hold you back but thankfully it isn’t a habit that you can’t get past. Making a conscious effort to start adjusting yourself and your daily routine to avoid procrastination is the best way to start achieving more of your goals and daily tasks!