Procrastinate Tomorrow

procrastinating_sign I’ll do it in the morning…

If my wife had a nickle for every time I said those words she’d be a very rich woman.

I’m a great procrastinator.  One of the best.  If it were an olympic event, I’d place.  I’d be standing on that platform while they place that medal around my neck then raise the American flag and play the Star Spangled Banner.  I would make history.  I just wouldn’t make much progress anywhere else.

That’s the problem I have found with procrastinating, it doesn’t solve anything.  Whatever it is I’m putting off is still there, usually with a lot more urgency and stress associated.

I’ve come across a few tips in the battle against procrastination, I’d like to share them with you now.

  1. If it can be done in 5-10 minutes or less, do it! – This is a killer solution.  When I look at what I “put off” most of it falls into this category.  Why put off something that can be done so quickly?!
  2. Tackle the difficult tasks first – A big reason I procrastinate is that I might dread the task ahead.  Maybe it is a challenging class assignment, or a length project at work.  Break it down into smaller tasks and start hacking away!  By doing these tasks first and getting them out of the way there is a deeper sense of accomplishment that comes.  Typically this is the joy or satisfaction of knowing you’ve done something hard and it’s now off your plate.
  3. Don’t psyche yourself out – I’m guilty of this.  I think the task will be harder than it is, but once I get started I wonder why I ever put it off in the first place
  4. Write it down – Get our your journal, your daytimer, open up your iCal or Evernote or your favorite App and put it on your to-do list.  Then give yourself a deadline. There is power in putting something in writing.  I’m addicted to crossing things off my to-do list.  (Confession: I sometimes put items on my list I’ve already done just so I can cross them off!)  There is nothing sweeter than the smell of a fresh Sharpie stroke as it wipes out that task on your list.
  5. Be accountable – I’m going to ask my wife to keep me accountable.  It’s easy to push something off until tomorrow.  There is a cost in most cases.  Count the cost and do it now if you can.

Don’t wait to tackle your procrastination problem.  It’ll eventually get the better of you at the worst possible time.

Do you struggle with procrastination?  What ways have you come up with to fight the good fight?

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