Procrastination: Deal with it in 5 steps

It’s easier than you may think!

“Never leave till tomorrow that which you can do today.”

If you have trouble living by Benjamin Franklin’s famous quote, then you’re probably a procrastinator! That is, you belong to the majority of people who choose to postpone making or implementing decisions. You may put off trivial tasks, such as calling a relative, or more demanding ones, such as completing a project at work. But how can you improve this tendency, thus mitigating its adverse effects on your daily life?

Limit e-temptations

 As difficult as it may seem with online distractions being countless these days, try to limit the e-temptations that can tie up a lot of your time and energy without you realizing it. Start by taking small steps, and as you move forward your confidence and motivation for more drastic measures will grow.

Identify the cause

Does your procrastination stem from the fear of failure, does it serve as a defence mechanism against the extremely fast pace of everyday life or is it triggered due to lack of motivation? The most important step that will help you overcome procrastination is to identify its cause, which, though may differ on a case-by-case basis, can be tracked down to a common underlying root cause.

Make a list of pros and cons

 Putting thoughts on paper can sometimes help us see things more clearly. So write down the advantages and disadvantages of postponing a task, and perhaps you’ll realize the true cost of doing so.

Set a schedule and take one step at a time

Make a weekly schedule, ideally a little more demanding, setting shorter deadlines than the ones actually applying to the actions you’ll include, and write down all tasks, small and large, that need to be completed. By sticking to the schedule, not only will you eventually become more efficient, but also more aware of the progress you're making.

Procrastination: Treat it in 5 simple steps

Ask for help

In trying to overcome the systematic putting off of tasks or other obligations, it might be a good idea to ask for some help. If, for example, you have an assignment or project to hand in by a certain deadline, you can ask friends or colleagues to work with you, and thereby, reduce the chances of putting off getting it done.

Procrastination is a behaviour with many ramifications, not only with regard to specific actions that are completed later than they could be, but mainly on a psychological level, as it generates an ever-increasing number of jobs that remain outstanding causing anxiety. In just a few simple steps you can defeat procrastination mitigating or even eliminating its effects and creating space and extra time in your daily life.

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