10 Steps to Killing Procrastination

Procrastination is the act of engaging yourself in non-priority tasks ahead of more urgent tasks. We all pay a very high price for entertaining procrastination in our lives, and most of the time we don’t even know it. We justify it by saying things like, “You only live once!” These things are often followed by statements like, “I wish I could be successful in the things that really matter to me (career, business, weight lose etc…)” Without realising it we have become responsible for our own failures. And the difference between success and failure is often the act of procrastination. While procrastination is the action, the motive for the action is often fear. Dealing with fear is a lifetime pursuit. So as a building block to conquering your fears, putting focus into killing procrastination is a worthy investment of your time.

Here are 10 actionable steps that may help you unseat this unwanted and damaging dictator;

  1. Create a Mission Statement – Don’t Settle
    • The first step to creating anything successful, begins with acknowledging and committing to a mission and a purpose.  Try using this Mission Statement Builder offered by Franklin Covey.
  2.  Set Goals
    • Possibly the most common step to beating procrastination is often the most misunderstood. Goals can only be truly validated and committed to in your heart and mind, if they are building towards your ultimate mission in life. Once your Mission Statement is clear to you, sit down and set 5 year, Annual, Monthly, Weekly, and Daily Goals. Make sure that each answers for a step towards your mission.
  3.  Early Up & Early Down
    • Make an early start everyday, allow this to become a routine and you will make time to get your head in the game, before the noise begins. However, with rising early, balance needs to be restored so you will need to get your head down earlier.
  4.  Stop Multitasking
    • One job done well is far better that two done badly.There are very few people who can confidently say that they can multi-task, and produce quality results. Build focus by tackling one thing at a time.
  5.  Set Deadlines
    • The power of deadlines is lost in our reality of our comfortable lives. Deadlines serve to provide defined start & end points to any project, but more importantly deadlines provide targets to hit and targets provide rewards. Perhaps the reward is something tangible like that car you’ve saved for, but more often than not the reward is the crossing the task off.
  6.  Delete Mobile Social Media Apps
    • Various studies and reports have shown that over 60% of people’s time on Social Media is spent on mobile devices. I know that I spend a great deal of time on Facebook and Linkedin,and if left unchecked can waste hours and miss countless deadlines. By deleting Social Media apps from your mobile devices you will encourage focus, cut down up to 60% of Facebook stalking, and allow yourself the chance to enjoy your Social Media experience that much more while protecting your time.
  7.  Track Your Time
    • Awareness of yourself is a very necessary part of changing any habit. Procrastination is the result of bad time management habits and in order to identify these bad habits, you have to track your time. Use a diary, or simply make a list of what you have done with each of your hours in the day. Completing this exercise for a week will reveal some interesting things which allow you to reevaluate your daily habits.
  8.  Keep a Journal
    • Journals have historically been seen as the small locked book that teen girls keep, to write about the boy they love and the parents that are ruining their chances. Journals, if committed to, can create room in your mind which in turn can allow for fresh ideas and motivation to surface. Clear space for ideas and motivation leads to your own culture of learning and growth, and it is this culture that will lock the door on procrastination. Start yours today by buying a notebook (Make it a special one) or use an application like Evernote to get you started.
  9.  Be Accountable
    • Your life is valuable. The things you can achieve for yourself and MANKIND itself are extremely valuable, and therefore your heartbeats and hours are to be protected and utilised to reveal your potential. So to protect these hours and heartbeats, allow yourself to be accountable to a friend, a leader or mentor who can be honest and upfront with you. Discuss and agree a plan of action in line with your mission statement, and be held accountable for your time until your goals are achieved.
  10.  Take It Easy (Real is Better than Perfect)
    • Procrastination is a symptom of worry, avoidance, fear, and even burnout. Killing procrastination will in turn allow for motivation, motivation will create energy, and energy will promote pride and drive. This train can be easily derailed if you take on too much. A key element to killing procrastination is being realistic – rather achieve REAL and TANGIBLE goals that add up to changing the world than set yourself up for being overwhelmed.