If someone gave me a dollar everytime I procrastinate, I would be a millionaire by now.No,but seriously this tough looking word is not really just a word but a habit I'm sure many of us are trying to ovecome.So,why do we procrastinate exactly?In simple terms if I were to explain this ,it is because we are not yet ready to do what we want to do or have to do.It could be because you are emotionally,mentally or even physically not in the state of doing what is needed to be done.But,you may ask where does this urge to procrastinate stem from and why do we behave the way we do?
Well,the answer is actually pretty simple, if we look at it.It's basically resistance to do or achieve something that is holding us back.This resistance or force can happen due to a variety of reasons such as your perfectionist tendencies,fear of not being good enough,writer's block or anything for that matter.Now,the real question is how do we get over it?So,here are a few ways that I've gathered over the years which have helped me to deal with procrastination-
1.Just do it-Apart from being Nike's slogan,this phrase is what actually needs to happen.As silly as this may sound, but you just need to do it without thinking of anything else at that moment.Easier said than done,I know.But to start off,you can follow the 5 second rule given by Mel Robbins, in which you start counting backwards from five and by the time you reach one,start with whatever it is you need to get done.Trust me,for most people this simple rule does work.Give it a try yourself.
2.Take breaks in between-Now,this may sound a little contradicting to what we are trying to tackle, but if you are a person who is unable to concentrate for long durations of time,start off with fifteen minutes at a time and then take a five minute break ,then start off again and take a five minute break and keep on doing the same till you achieve your target.You can also gradually increase your time to work but honestly, the chances are once you start on something,you get in the flow of things and wouldn't want to take a break unless you need to and then refresh and start again.
3.Break it into chunks-One more reason we avoid getting things done is because they appear monstrous to us and just by seeing the gravity of it,we want to avoid it all costs.So,the best way to tackle it is to break any task into small sub-tasks and complete one thing at a time.Imagine wanting to have a cake all by yourself.You want it all but an average person can't have it all at once.So,what do you do?Most people divide it into small pieces and relish it at different intervals, thereby getting contenment and satisfaction.The same analogy works here too. Now,it totally depends on you as to how many chunks you want to break one task into, but one suggestion is that don't make too many small tasks also, because then you'll feel overwhelmed and that contradicts our purpose.
4.Rewards-I know you've probably heard it before but it's true that as humans we seek validation and rewards for our achievements.That's what motivates us to perform better but the catch is, for some people the rewards might be intrinsic and for others, it might be extrinsic.External rewards may be treating yourself with anything as small or big as you want after you feel you are done with your task.And,intrinsic rewards would be the contentment and satisfaction you get after completing anything,you indulge in self-praise,appreciate your efforts and hardwork and this gives you the motivation to keep going forward.Though both of these work,but for the long run, try to aim for intrinsic motivation and reward.
5.Visualization-Last, but certainly not the least, is the power of visualization.Now,what I mean by this is, whatever you want to do, first visualize it in your mind ,like how would you feel when you've done it and the process you'll follow to reach your target/goal.When you visualize yourself doing it,you really get the confidence boost to make it happen in reality and tend to manifest your desired goal by positively working towards it.
With these few tips,I'm sure you'll be able to beat your procrastination woes.It may take some time in the beginning but then all good things take time ,but with small baby steps everyday, you can totally start taking action in your life quite literally, and lead your way to glory.