July 9, 2013

3 Simple Ways to Overcome Procrastination. ~ Cailen Ascher

As I sat down to write this article, I thought, “Maybe I’ll just put this off until later.”

Do you sense the irony?

I’m here to share tips about how to overcome procrastination, and I almost procrastinated doing it!

The thing is, procrastination isn’t something we can necessarily overcome and be rid of forever.

No matter how good we are at moving forward with plans, procrastination is sneaky and can rear its annoying head even after we think we’ve tamed the beast.

So, what can you do when you find yourself not wanting to do something that needs to get done?

Check out these tips below—unless you want to put off reading them until later.

1. Acknowledge it.

Too often we let procrastination get the best of us by not acknowledging it. We have that glimmer of “I don’t want to do that now,” and we give into it. We check our email again, we scroll through our Facebook newsfeed, or we stare at our computer screens feeling like we couldn’t possibly be less motivated to work on the task that faces us. But the very act of recognizing our resistance can begin to break it down.

Instead of running away from your next “to-do,” sit with the unsettling feeling of not wanting to do it. What does the feeling feel like? Where does it reside in your body? Once you feel it on a visceral level, you might realize that it’s not so bad after all.

2. Give yourself 10 minutes.

Sometimes when we hit a wall and feel like putting off all of our responsibilities, there’s a good reason behind it. We’re overtired, over worked and burned out. If you think this might be the case, and the root of your resistance, give yourself 10 minutes of “me time” to decompress.

Take your eyes off your computer screen, silence your phone, and practice some deep breathing. Put on some relaxing tunes and close your eyes. Or even lie down for 10 minutes on your bed or floor. Set an alarm to keep you honest and promise yourself that you’ll fully enjoy these 10 minutes so that you can be more productive afterwards.

3. Just do 10 minutes.

If you really, really do not want to tackle the task before you, just do 10 minutes. Instead of thinking about the whole work project you have to do, workshop you have to plan, or paper you have to write, focus on the first step that will move you in the right direction.

Can you send an email to a colleague that can help you with your project? Can you order the book that you need for your research? Can you flesh out a quick outline of topics that you want to cover during your workshop? Just do something that will move you in the right direction. And, more often than not, you’ll quickly realize that the big, bad, scary “to-do” isn’t so horribly painful after all—you may find that you can give it an hour of your time, instead of just 10 minutes.




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Asst. Ed.: Kathleen O’Hagan/Ed: Brianna Bemel

{Photo: via Pinterest}

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