By William Bronchick. Esq.
In Part One of this article, we spoke about the fact that we all are procrastinators from time to time. However, there is good news! Procrastination can be overcome. Overcoming procrastination takes hard work and resolve. Like any habit or behavior, one wishes to change, the person themselves must be onboard and decide that they are going to change. It takes time. It’s extremely helpful to have a support system around you. It’s also easy to slip back into your old ways should times get tough.
Here are a few tips on dealing with and conquering procrastination:
1. Start Small and With a Small Amount of Time. Start with just one or two items that are small in nature and try to finish those in a quality manner and on-time. Even if you don’t feel like working, commit to 30-60 minutes. It’s likely, once you are warmed up and into the project that the feeling of accomplishment you get from this can propel you to moving ahead to more complex tasks
2. Ask for Accountability. Letting others know what you hope to accomplish and asking them to keep you on task is a powerful tool in avoiding procrastination and moving ahead.
3. Delegate. A good manager delegates what is needed but keeps track of what is being accomplished. Could it be you are trying to take on too much and thus are using procrastination as a coping tool? There can be a time when you have to roll up your sleeves, but look at the big picture!
4. Adhere to the B+ Principle. Your reputation and important relationships should be at an A+. That being said, if the rest of your life is lived at a B+, you are accomplishing more than most people do, without being overwhelmed most of the time.
5. Prioritize. Tackle the most time sensitive items first. If you are one of those folks who has a constant and almost overwhelming outflow of great ideas, provide yourself an outlet for that so it doesn’t distract you from accomplishing your personal and business goals. Write the ideas down in a specific place and then provide a specific time each week to analyze and address them.
6. Strive to Achieve Balance in Your Business and Personal Life. Your business is what normally pay the bills and provides the means for you to enjoy a more fulfilling life. Your personal life is what you are also striving to improve for your our loved ones. Organize and prioritize your time so that you do justice to each. It takes both to be in sync for you to be at your best.
7. Understand it will Take Time. Any negative behavior worth changing normally takes at least 3-6 weeks to get headed in the right direction. Understand and accept this. Don’t let yourself fall back into your old patterns!
8. Reward Yourself. Once you have made some small progress, reward yourself appropriately. On bigger accomplishments reward yourself and those around you in a larger way such as dinner out or a weekend away.
9. Enjoy Yourself. One of the reasons that most of us stay motivated in our businesses is that we truly enjoy what we do. We relish the challenges, the opportunities, the business relationship and the journey itself!! It doesn’t seem like work.
Well, it’s time to get to work. We have outlined the reasons you may be a victim of procrastination and techniques and steps for you to break the “procrastination chain.” It’s important to use those closest to you both in business and personally, as allies and as a support system.
Understand that no one can do this but you! But knowledge is power and now that you have a complete understanding of the causes and effects of procrastination, it’s time to break the chains and move forward in your life. This is where having the aid of a trusted advisor or mentor can be valuable!
Here’s to your success!