//Noëlle El Saadany//
The dictionary defines procrastination as a behavioral problem in which a person puts off his routine tasks until later. In layman’s terms, the behavior is characterized by excuses. Procrastination is a lead factor in breaking promises to ourselves and others. It can happen easily. When procrastination strikes, we find a myriad of things to do that have nothing to do with completing tasks or reaching goals. In the end, we stunt our growth. Changing poor behavior is possible, don’t put it off.
Break tasks into little steps
Often, we are overwhelmed by the nature and size of tasks. We put it off if it’s too much to handle and go off and do something else; anything but the task facing us. You may have a big paper due or a report for work. As soon as you power up your laptop to start, other things grab your attention. Easier things, things you rather enjoy. When this happens, see it for what it is and push forward. Consider breaking huge tasks down into smaller ones. Start on deadlines as soon as possible and avoid the pull to put things off until later. The feeling of accomplishment of ticking off a check-list is high when faced with projects that you’d rather put off. Before you know it, it’s done. Win-win.
Make a to-do list and change priority
Another spin on breaking huge tasks down is to do the toughest thing first. Energy levels and motivation are at their peak at the start and we will surely succeed in doing these odd ones. After we knock out a few more tasks, we feel pretty good. Go with that feeling and keep knocking out your to-do list. It gets easier as items are knocked. You’re a rock star!
Set a detailed deadline
After breaking tasks into small ones and making a to-do list, set separate deadlines. Really work at staying the course. Life is full of deadlines and we usually feel bad about missing some. Don’t – just work on getting better. Don’t risk coming up short (people get tired of excuses), getting nothing done by ignoring work deadlines, bill due dates, etc. Instead, split goals into monthly, weekly and nightly tasks and do these according to the demand.
Get inspiration and help
Procrastination can also be avoided by seeking help from people who you view as ‘having it together.’ Role models are everywhere and can include people from all walks of life. Don’t let procrastination rob you of setting and striving for goals.
Accountability for intentions and goals
We can push ourselves forward by making goals known. Accountability means we keep our word. This can be done by publicizing intentions and goals. People will inquire about your progress. It puts positive pressure on us to follow through with what we say we’re going to do. Accountability doesn’t leave much room for procrastination.
Bottom line; don’t put off things that are going to enhance your life. We only get one. Live it well.