How to Defeat Procrastination

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“One of the great challenges of our age, in which the tools of our productivity are also the tools of our leisure, is to figure out how to make more useful those moments of procrastination when we’re idling in front of our computer screens.”

~ Joshua Foer

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It is estimated that Procrastination afflicts 90% of us, and 20% of these identify themselves as “chronic procrastinators”.  As a master of procrastinator myself, here are eight steps I find helpful  to help me get started on something I have been putting off:

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  • Write it down! If it is on your to do list and you keep putting it off, decide if it is really something you want to do. If not, consider putting on your ‘someday/maybe’ list.
  • Make it the very first task of the day, before checking email or doing anything else.
  • Just Do It! Ignore any other tasks that might be distracting your attention and just get started.
  • Remove or attend to any obstacles which may be standing in the way of you starting – for example close down your Internet browser or any other programs on your computer that are distracting you.
  • Set yourself a limited time – say 1/2 hour. If you finish the task in the allotted time, even better, if not, at least you’ve made a start.
  • “You don’t gotta get it perfect …just get it going”. Don’t worry about perfection, you can always improve it later if necessary.
  • Don’t wait for the ‘right time’ to make a start – circumstances will never line up perfectly. Resolve to start anyway.
  • Think about the task and write down any aspects of it excite you.

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Screen Shot 2013-10-15 at 4.37.03 PMIf you’d like to know more about how to beat procrastination, enter your email below to download a free copy of my book “What Are You Waiting For?” 

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