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How to Beat Procrastination

Not in the mood to work, work, work, work, work?

Time to build a good base of contacts, get in touch with new journalists, publish new content and send out a new press release. But wait. This video looks interesting. New message on Whatsapp. More likes on Instagram. Okay, back to work. Oh wait, one more notification on Slack.

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If this just about sums up your thinking process in the middle of the day, then you are one among many people struggling with procrastination. Research indicates that procrastination levels have quadrupled in the last 30 years among both students and employees.

Psychologists found that increased procrastination levels can be quite problematic. Findings of a study from the Case Western Reserve University suggest that increased procrastination levels magnify stress, reduce performance, and lead to poor health.

So, how do I get things done?

According to Travis Bradberry (president of TalentSmart), it’s really about overcoming mental habits.

I don’t know where to begin!

When you’re standing in front of an overwhelming task, don’t get dumbstruck. Whenever something looks difficult, break it down into smaller tasks and get started from there. Don’t allow fear of the whole stop you from engaging in the parts.

Too many distractions.

Many times you can create your own distractions. Answering calls, checking emails and even reading the online news are some of the things we do to put off the real work at hand.

Best solution: scare yourself. Remind yourself of the consequences of delaying your work, put on some mental pressure, and let the rational person take over the wheel from the fun monkey. Additionally, make sure you turn off every gadget that's not absolutely necessary.

This is too easy.

Now there’s a red flag. Let’s not underestimate the time and effort it takes to accomplish something. When you find yourself thinking that tasks are too easy, start connecting those small, mundane tasks to the bigger picture. For example, today’s tedious data entry tasks will further your team’s strategic objectives later on.

I don’t like it!

Instead of pushing the boring and undesirable tasks to the back of your plate, learn to “eat your vegetables before you can have dessert”. Thank goodness mom taught us that one. Self-discipline for the win.

That rounds it up, folks. Before we go, best to stamp this somewhere along your cerebral cortex: Procrastination itself is a failure. Saying you’ll do it later is the same thing as not doing anything at all.

Our best wishes for a productive life! Cheers.