The Anti-Procrastination Guide You Need To Read

The Anti-Procrastination Guide You Need To Read
Strategy
Like Us On Facebook
Like Us On Facebook

Procrastination. It can be the death of us. It’s the irresistible practice that can somehow find its way into our habits time and time again, no matter how many times consequences have called for a change. The worst thing about it is that it can hold us back from things we genuinely want in life.

What’s even scarier to consider is that procrastination not only hurts you in the short term, it can have rollover effect. When procrastinating, it becomes harder to do better at the next task, while all the old things are taking up valuable space in your mind.

“Procrastination takes up real estate in the mind,” author and entrepreneur Christine Hassler told Forbes. “Even if you’re not working on a project, you’re still energetically thinking about it. Your mind becomes cluttered and there is no room for the things that make you successful in business—like innovation, creativity, and intuition.”

For those who fall into the 30-more-minutes trap from time to time, to those who feel that it can be a truly unwanted and restraining force on their lives, there are specific steps that can be taken to help your motivation surpass your urge to procrastinate.

The first option you should scratch off your list, though, is the prospect of enumerating all of your issues.

Procrastinating__The_Wallpaper_by_Darkangelsv1

“Making a huge list of ‘things to do’ or scheduling every minute of your day may INCREASE your stress and thus procrastination”, says the McGraw Center for Teaching and Learning at Princeton University. “Instead, set reasonable goals (e.g. a manageable list of things to do), break big tasks down, and give yourself flexibility and allot time to things you enjoy as rewards for work completed.”

If you usually put dealing with your tasks in one shot on your agenda, you’re probably wondering what you should do now.

Hassler says, in the article contributed to Forbes by the Daily Muse, that one of the things we can try is forcing our most avoided tasks into becoming habits. Once that is accomplished, addressing troublesome tasks becomes routine.

“Set aside an hour a day for tasks you’ve been putting off,” she said. “A productive time is between 10 and 11 AM—you’re awake, your breakfast has kicked in, and you’re not hungry for lunch. If you can commit to this for 40 days in a row—hopefully it will become [routine], like brushing your teeth.”

What Hassler, who is also a life coach, proposes is somewhat of a lengthy solution. It can take time to execute and impatience may tempt you to not even try. Coincidentally, that is the exact type of mindset that she advises people to avoid if they’re trying to trash their bad habits. You simply won’t get out of procrastination with more procrastination.

Another mindset that must be avoided is the one that has us thinking we “work better” under pressure.

“Virtually everyone who offers this explanation habitually procrastinates and has not completed an important academic task in which they made a plan, implemented it, and had time to review, etc. before their deadline,” the McGraw Center said. So, in reality, they can’t make a comparison about the circumstances under which they work best. If you pretty much always procrastinate, and never really approach your tasks systematically, then you can’t accurately say that you know you “do better” under pressure.”

Most experts advise that you make calculated, pressure limiting plans to tackle everything you’ve put off. But in response to the way some people resort to procrastination after freezing up from fear, others offer unorthodox solutions.

“When you take a dog to the veterinarian, the animal often shakes and shivers,” psychotherapist Jude Bijou told USA Today. “That’s a much more natural response than a human being who tries to contain fear and become very still. Don’t tighten up. Makes sounds and wiggle around and let the energy out of your body. Shake hard for about 1 minute, and then you’ll feel calmer and think more clearly.”

Whatever path you choose to go about your procrastination killing ways, though, it’s important to do it for your own benefit.

“Remember to focus on your own reasons and your goals,” the McGraw Center. Other people’s goals for you are not goals at all, but obligations.”

Share Tweet
React
Like Us On Facebook
Like Us On Facebook

Joseph Milord

A Journalism & Media Studies product from Rutgers University, Joseph began his writing days as a blogger in his sophomore year before a twist of fate saw him cross paths with Elite Daily. He hasn't looked back since, only forward towards fulfilling his obsession with words through many more articles for the voice of generation-Y.

More In Strategy

Strategy Samantha O'Connor

5 Types Of Professional Bridges We All Eventually Burn Throughout Our Careers

What do 20-something interns, 30-something associates and 40-something CEOs have in common? They’ve all made a few enemies and burned a professional bridge or two along the way while climbing the corporate ladder. That’s right; despite what your conscience tells you, you’re not the only one with a professional rival. It’s something that’s not usually broadcast […]

Strategy Jamelle Sanders

Millennial Debt Prescription: 5 Ways To Rid Yourself Of Debt

As a business coach and Millennial, I am always researching strategies to improve my financial acumen and to empower me for even greater financial freedom. Sadly, I do not meet many other Millennials who share this belief or concern. Research shows that more Millennials are taking steps to secure their financial futures. However, what we […]

Strategy Joshua Fechter

10 Ways To Get Your Dream Job At A Top Tech Company

We all want an amazing career, but wanting something isn’t always enough to get it. And if that something is a job at a top tech company, your life just got a whole lot harder. Even though just getting an interview at a top technology company is extremely hard, there are ways to make it […]

Strategy Joe Belsterling

3 Things You Need To Know Before Crowdfunding Your Startup

More and more startups and entrepreneurs are turning to crowdfunding these days and not just equity crowdfunding (i.e. Wefunder), but rather, perk crowdfunding (i.e. Kickstarter and Indiegogo). Crowdfunding can be a great tool for startups and provides much more than just funds (e.g. market validation, a loyal customer base, early adopter market, etc.), especially for younger, […]

Also On Elite

Life

My Name Is Brittany Maynard And I Am Choosing To Die With Dignity

Brittany Maynard has courageously chosen to end her life on November 1, 2014. She suffers from glioblastoma — terminal brain cancer — and will travel to Oregon with her husband and her mother to peacefully end her life under the state’s Death With Dignity Act. At just 29, Brittany was faced with a decision: Would she […]

Film

Guy Perfectly Recreates Famous Movie Scenes Using Nothing But Legos (Photos)

A 15-year-old Scottish boy named Morgan Spence made some of the most impressive Lego recreations I’ve ever seen. Spence, using nothing but the colored blocks, recreated iconic scenes from classic films. He didn’t just make static scenes. He turned them into short, stop-motion videos. He did scenes from major films like “Pulp Fiction,” “The Shining,” […]

Food

Cooks In China Got Together And Made A 1,863-Pound Pumpkin Pie (Photos)

As if the world didn’t already have way too many pumpkin-themed foods and accessories, a group of cooks in China created a pumpkin pie weighing in at 1,893 pounds — and for no real reason. According to First We Feast, around 40 cooks were commissioned to create this massive pumpkin pie in Changsha, China. In […]

Life

9 Reasons Why Vegetarians Make Awesome Girlfriends

I had no idea that nearly a year ago, I would give up my love for meat and my much-needed supply of protein. Can you imagine waking up every morning and not smelling the succulent aroma of bacon? Neither could I, but low and behold, I did. Of course, you’re probably reading this thinking I’m crazy, […]

World

Dallas Man’s Ebola-Themed Halloween Decorations Are Actually Scary

Is there anything scarier right now than Ebola? Probably not, which is why it makes for a particularly frightening source of inspiration for Halloween decorations. At least, that’s the thinking behind James Faulk’s decision to decorate his house like an Ebola quarantine zone. Faulk lives in the University Park neighborhood of Dallas, which has been […]

TV

A New App Will Teach You To Speak The Language Of ‘Game Of Thrones’

One of my favorite aspects of “Game of Thrones” is all the different, original languages spoken by the characters. Dothraki, of course, is the major standout among the many tongues. There is now an app that will help you learn to speak Dothraki as well as Khaleesi or Khal Drogo. The app is meant to […]