Chronic procrastinator, reporting for duty! In university, I told myself that I worked best under pressure and that all-nighters added excitement to my life. I have fallen into the Netflix-portal of "Just one more episode," too many times to count. I would put off adulting in favour of scrolling Facebook.
But, now, I am a reformed procrastinator, just over here living my most productive life. The cool thing is, you can too. Here are my top tips for cutting out procrastination (and, therefore, being a more productive human)!
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Tailor Your To-Do List
Sit down and write a to-do list of all the things you don't want to do (not the things you know you'll do regardless). I've been guilty of writing things down on my to-do list after doing them, just for the satisfaction of crossing them off. Now, I form my daily to-do lists around things I actually have to work at.
Eat That Frog
Based on Brian Tracy's book of the same name (check it out here!), the concept of eat that frog comes from a Mark Twain saying - basically, if the first thing you do each morning is to eat a live frog (gross!!), you can go through the rest of your day knowing you have already dealt with the worst thing that's going to happen to you.
Thankfully, you don't have to eat a frog; instead, your "frog" is your biggest, most important task ... that you are most likely to procrastinate.
Instead, adopt the habit of getting the habit of getting that big, important task done first thing in the morning - you'll be on track to have a productive day and less likely to procrastinate your small tasks.
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Get an Accountability Partner
If you're forever slacking on your workouts, find a friend who wants to get fit together. If you want to read more, join a book club. If you need someone to check in with you on your business goals, find a success partner, mentor, or coach.
The point is, even just knowing someone else is going to ask you if you're getting stuff done will help to motivate you to actually get that stuff done.
That to-do list you wrote? You know, the one of all the things you don't really want to do? Set up a reward system for yourself to help motivate yourself to do those things, increase your productivity, and actually incorporate self-care into your routine.
For example, I will write my to-do list for the day in the order I need to complete. The last item on my list might be book a massage, paint my nails, or take a bath (something I really want to do and would be likely to do instead of tackling my to-do list). You'll have the satisfaction of doing something you want to do, as a reward for doing the things you need to do.
Stop Waiting for the Perfect Time
No, but seriously.
So many people wait to take action on their big goals because they're waiting for things to be perfect... but things will never be perfect and that prevents those people from building the life of their dreams. Please, just stop. Seriously, stop. (Spoken with love, from someone who used to do a victim of Waiting for Perfection Syndrome).
Imagine How You'll Feel When You Finish The Thing You Are Putting Off
Visualization is a powerful tool in motivating yourself to stop procrastinating and be more productive. You can sit and focus for a minute on how you will feel crossing this item off your to-do list. Or, you can go even deeper, and visualize your dream life.
How would you feel if you had accomplished every single goal you have? If you had business success? Mom success? Life success? What would that feel like? Really picture it.
Now, you know you have to tackle your to-do list to make those feelings a reality - you'll be so much more motivated to actually do it!
If you would like to learn more simple strategies for getting stuff done, how to structure your mornings most effectively, the best methods for the most productive action, and so much more ... check out The Balancing Motherhood Mini-Course! This 4-week course will help you find balance and live a more organized, productive, and healthy life!