By Terry Orr
I suspect all of us are guilty of procrastinating from time to time - myself included, more often than I’d like to admit. It is really a very bad habit and we seem to find all sorts of excuses for putting things off. So lets take a look at some ways to help us overcome procrastination.
According to Steve Pavlina - Procrastination, the habit of putting tasks off to the last possible minute, can be a major problem in both your career and your personal life. Side effects include missed opportunities, frenzied work hours, stress, overwhelm, resentment, and guilt. This article will explore the root causes of procrastination and give you several practical tools to overcome it.
Lifehack article “Overcome Procrastination Once and For All” recommends:
- Know your most important goals and values.
- Only do tasks that contribute to those goals and values.
- Mentally link tasks to the pleasurable outcomes you seek.
- Plan your day & week.
- Do, but don’t overdo. Rest when needed.
- Break down big tasks.
- Get help making decisions.
- Believe in yourself!
- Trick & Treat!
The University at Buffalo offers these tips:
- Recognize self-defeating problems such as; fear and anxiety, difficulty concentrating, poor time management, indecisiveness and perfectionism.
- Identify your own goals, strengths and weaknesses, values and priorities.
- Compare your actions with the values you feel you have. Are your values consistent with your actions?
- Discipline yourself to use time wisely: Set priorities.
- Study in small blocks instead of long time periods. For example, you will accomplish more if you study/work in 60 minute blocks and take frequent 10 minute breaks in between, than if you study/work for 2-3 hours straight, with no breaks. Reward yourself after you complete a task.
- Motivate yourself to study: Dwell on success, not on failure. Try to study in small groups. Break large assignments into small tasks. Keep a reminder schedule and checklist.
- Set realistic goals.
- Modify your environment: Eliminate or minimize noise/ distraction. Ensure adequate lighting. Have necessary equipment at hand. Don't waste time going back and forth to get things. Don't get too comfortable when studying. A desk and straight-backed chair is usually best (a bed is no place to study). Be neat! Take a few minutes to straighten your desk. This can help to reduce day-dreaming.
Here are the primary tips to overcome procrastination that I use regarding this blog site:
- Planning is my essential first step - What must be done and when
- Prioritizing - my weekly and daily tasks
- Creativity and Productive - Knowing when my peak periods are and capitalizing on them
- Getting it Done - in my case, Hyper-focusing when my ADD/ADHD is running amuck
- Taking a breaks when I need them - just walking about the house helps at times - others might require walking around the block a couple times.
How do you deal with procrastination?
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