Procrastination ends now: take charge and seize the moment

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Feel stuck right now?

Does the old enemy procrastination come back to visit you?

Procrastination is something we all face from time to time. Some goals or tasks may never begin at all infact, and it can feel overwhelming to even get started. This can then mean we put off things we need to do, even though you know you should do them, which can lead to problems later. Procrastination often comes from various fears. Our minds tend to magnify future tasks, making them seem daunting and intimidating. As a result, we put them off, attempting to evade the inevitable discomfort we anticipate.

Procrastination can sometimes feel like a big mountain blocking our way to getting things done. It can feel hard to overcome, making our goals seem far away. But if we keep trying bit by bit, or breaking down tasks step by step, we can climb it. Each little step helps us get closer to reaching our goals. By facing procrastination and taking small steps forward, we can beat it and achieve what we want.

If you were a fly on wall observing someone who faces procrastination, you might notice them finding it difficult to make decisions, getting easily distracted, making excuses to delay work, avoiding the task altogether, showing signs of stress, rushing to complete tasks at the last moment, being critical of themselves, seeking encouragement from others, attributing their procrastination to external factors, and experiencing a pattern of procrastination followed by brief bursts of productivity.

Some classic examples of procrastination we all may have experienced are below:

  1. Delaying Studying: Waiting until the last minute to study for an exam.
  2. Putting Off Work: Waiting until the deadline to start a project.
  3. Avoiding Cleaning: Ignoring household chores until the mess becomes overwhelming.
  4. Postponing Appointments: Putting off scheduling necessary appointments, like with the dentist.
  5. Delaying Exercise: Continually postponing starting a workout routine or joining the gym in January to go a few times and never return.
  6. Putting Off Healthy Eating: Delaying starting a healthy eating plan indefinitely.
  7. Ignoring Bills: Avoiding paying bills until they’re overdue.
  8. Procrastinating Learning: Delaying starting a new hobby or learning a new skill.
  9. Avoiding Conversations: Putting off having difficult conversations with loved ones.
  10. Delaying Repairs: Ignoring necessary home repairs until they become urgent.

So, are there any positives to procrastination?

I sometimes reflect and get asked if procrastination can be a good thing, while procrastination is generally seen as a bad habit because it can lead to stress and missed deadlines, there are some potential upsides:

  1. Boosts Creativity: Some people find that delaying tasks can spark creative ideas or solutions.
  2. Pressure Can Motivate: The pressure of approaching deadlines can sometimes push people to work more efficiently.
  3. Helps Prioritise: Procrastination can naturally lead to focusing on the most important tasks first.
  4. Encourages Mindful Breaks: Taking short breaks before completing tasks can prevent burnout and promote well-being. Taking a break for 5 minutes in every 25 minutes can drive on productivity.
  5. Allows for Better Decision-Making: Delaying decisions can give time to carefully consider options and make better choices.

I’ve put together a carefully researched way of how to tackle the enemy of procrastination, if it’s a problem for you.

Consider a task you’ve been putting off. It could be any of the instances we’ve discussed or something personal to your circumstances. Picture yourself beginning to tackle that task. You’re likely to experience an uncomfortable sensation. Focus on what you’re feeling. Irrespective of its label, that discomfort is a type of discomfort. Fear, shame, vulnerability, and similar emotions all fall under this wide-ranging definition of discomfort.

What tasks are currently on your mind that you know you should tackle? What’s that one thing you keep postponing, even though you’re aware it needs attention? Do you find yourself juggling several of these tasks, like I do in day-to-day life?

Now, when you think about all of them, or even just one significant task, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed, isn’t it? That feeling is entirely understandable.

But what if you dedicated just three minutes to addressing it? Three minutes to take some form of action, any action, what would it be?

Now that I’ve committed to just three minutes, I simply tackle the task I’ve been putting off! It’s become a rule for me, just address that one thing you’ve been avoiding. You know exactly what it is, it’s the thought on your mind right now.

Avoid thinking in terms of patterns. No more “I always” or “I never” because those generalising thoughts only make you feel worse.

Keep things creative and straightforward, what can be accomplished in these three minutes right now? That’s the only question you ever need to ask, and you’ll find yourself free from the burden of procrastination.

What can you get done in three minutes?

  • Make your bed, I still remember a quote “If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed. If you make your bed every morning, you will have accomplished the first task of the day, it will give you a small sense of pride and it will encourage you to do another task and another and another”.Admiral McRaven. I highly recommend watching this on You Tube as below:

This video started my journey to get things done, the small things matter and will lead you to bigger tasks.

  • Watering your plants.
  • Tidying up a small area of your home.
  • Washing a few dishes or loading the dishwasher.
  • Wiping down bathroom surfaces.
  • Reading a short article or chapter of a book.
  • Dedicate a slot to reply to emails or plan your week ahead, add to your calendar on your phone. This will notify you, as a reminder to act.
  • Writing down a to-do list for the day.
  • Three minutes of fitness: Squats whilst making a morning tea or coffee, how long does the kettle take to boil? push the boundaries and get creative. I’m sure you can think of more exercises.
  • 20 push ups or sit ups before getting in the shower.
  • Vacume whilst watching the adverts on television.
  • Ironing whilst listening to your favourite podcast 👌, complete tasks and grow your knowledge.
  • Clean the shower, whilst in it.

I could go on and on.

If you act, you will change your future, trust me you will thank yourself later.

If you have any questions, or you’d like help to conquer procrastination, please get in touch.

Contact Chris


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