Photo by africa | FreeDigitalPhotos.net
A huge part of why we fail to get things done is ineffective time management, and procrastination is likely the culprit. The good news is this: no matter how many years you’ve spent mastering procrastination, you can retrain your brain to beat it. The key is to tackle the monster one piece at a time, so that you’re not overwhelmed and tempted to procrastinate on not procrastinating!
The stress of finishing a task may be so daunting that we don’t know where to start! This often triggers procrastination, which only results in less time to get the job done. So the first step in tackling procrastination is to focus on starting a task rather than finishing it.
Pull out your calendar and schedule two 15-minute tasks each day for the next week, preferably one in the morning and one in the afternoon. Got a big project looming over your head? Break it up into smaller tasks that can be done in 15 minutes each. Now, here’s the trick: practice deliberate delay. You cannot start the task before the scheduled time. When the time comes, take 15 minutes and do as much as you can in that time, but then leave the task alone until the next scheduled time. In doing so, you are forming the habit of following through with your commitments and starting tasks when you intend to. This exercise seems simple, but it essentially rewires your brain to increase self-discipline and kick procrastination to the curb.