7 Ways To Stop Procrastinating And Make Massive Progress In Your Biz
We’ve all thought to ourselves, “I need to stop procrastinating and get this damn thing done!” And, then we promptly put it off for “just 5 more minutes”.
Some people might think that procrastination is a clear sign of being lazy. But, in fact, research has shown that for many people procrastination is closer to task aversion than lack of motivation.
So, if you’re beating yourself up on a daily basis for being lazy and not getting your projects done, knock it off! You’re not lazy. And, below are a few ways that you can kick your brain into gear.
Save The Drama
One of the number one reasons that people procrastinate or, have an aversion to a certain task, is because they make a big deal out of it.
This is especially true when the task is something that they don’t like doing, don’t feel they’re good at, or are nervous about.
Think about it this way. If you overthought every single step of the process of getting up from the couch to walk to the refrigerator and refill your water bottle, how much water do you think you would drink in a day?
So, when you have tasks on your to-do list that you know you don’t feel good about, don’t overthink it. Don’t make a huge deal about how much you don’t like the task. Don’t think about all of the ways that the task sucks.
Instead, think about the task as though it were a trip to the refrigerator. If you really want to stop procrastinating you have to think about each task like it’s no big deal.
Write in Past Tense
When you look at your to-do list, and it’s full of tasks that you don’t like, it can be really easy to completely avoid the list.
But, what happens then?
You crawl into bed at night and think about how you’re never going to feel like you’re really in charge of your business. You’re never going to realize your dream of true freedom. And, you’re always going to be overwhelmed and frazzled.
Instead of getting stuck in this nasty cycle, focus on trying to stop procrastinating by writing the tasks on your to-do list in the past tense. So, rather than “write blog post”, your task would read, “blog post written”.
I don’t know if you can feel the difference in those two when you read them but, I sure can. There’s a sense of urgency that comes with writing a task in past tense. It’s like, “oh crap! the commitment has been made. someone is counting on that from me and they think it’s done.” – even if that someone is me!
I used to show up 110% when I worked 9-to-5 and bust my ass to further the business goals and revenue of someone else’s business. So, there’s no reason that I can’t do that for myself and my own business.
Writing tasks on my to-do list in past tense and creating that sense of urgency is just the kick in the butt that I need to get started.
Why are you doing this?
If your days are filled with resistance, dread, and aversion about your to-do list … you might just need to start over.
Do you know why you started this business? Do you know why you want to grow it and to what end? Are those reasons really resonating with you?
It’s really easy to start out on a set path as an entrepreneur and then, through the evolutionary journey that inevitably happens to each of us, get distracted or take different routes until our business is nowhere near what we set out for it to be.
And, sometimes, that’s amazing.
But, other times, it means we have gotten to a place where we aren’t working in alignment and the passion and drive have been lost.
If you’re not 100% in alignment with why you’re doing all of the tasks on your list then it’s going to be really hard to stop procrastinating. Stop doing those tasks and use that time to figure out why you’re not in alignment.
Write it down
In this age of electronics, it’s really easy to forget all about pencil and paper as a means of communication. In fact, my husband and I were just talking the other day about how terrible our daughter’s handwriting is because she’s always typing.
But, regardless of how many electronics we implement to make our days easier, there are certain actions that work better.
And, writing things down is one of them.
Things that you write down will get done. It’s a little commitment that you make to yourself when you write a task on a list. Using your brain to move your hand and form the letters creates a connection between you and that task.
Whether you use a planner, a notebook of lined paper, or post-it notes … you need to write down your tasks.
Trying to stop procrastinating can be a real challenge. Make sure to set yourself up for success by taking things back to basics.
I like to break my day out into three sections; morning – afternoon – evening. And, then I break down each section into my business time and my client time. When I have a block of business time, I add tasks that pertain to my business. When I have a block of client time, I add tasks that are from my clients.
It’s really that simple. I’ve tried other ways to break my day out into blocks but, for me, the morning – afternoon – evening really work best.
I use a pencil and paper so that I can erase tasks from the morning and move them to the afternoon if I need to. Some people that I’ve worked with have used my post-it notes method. This is where you get a piece of poster board and create your sections.
Then, you write your tasks for the day on post-it notes and add them to the specific block of the day that you want to get them done.
You can easily move the post-it notes from one block to another if you need to.
Want to stop procrastinating? 5-4-3-2-1
As always, I have to mention Mel Robbins’ 5-second method for dealing with your brain and getting out of your own way.
Looking at a list of tasks that suck and that you don’t want to do can kick off a series of excuses. After all, your brain is wired to protect you from things that suck.
So, of course, it’s going to come up with a whole list of reasons why you don’t need to do that task right now … or ever.
But, guess what?
YOU are in charge of your brain. Not the other way around. You get to decide what you do and when.
So, if you really want to get organized and feel like you’re the boss of your business and your day, then you need to approach your to-do list with focus.
And, how do you do that?
You just 5-4-3-2-1 it.
Literally. You think of the thing that you don’t want to do, count backward from 5 down to 1, and go do the thing.
You can read more about the 5-second method here.
You’re not perfect. Deal with it.
When you’re trying to achieve perfection before you try to attempt a task, you’re setting yourself up for failure.
Here’s the thing. Done is better than perfect. So, if you don’t even try, you’ve failed.
If you take a look at the first few blog posts or videos that your mentor published … you’ll see how far they have come.
But, they wouldn’t be where they are today if they didn’t even try. Clarity comes with action. The more you do those tasks on your list, the more you’re going to realize what your special sauce is and refine your messaging.
Your business will become more and more polished as you make progress. But, if you just sit and stare at your to-do list each day waiting for things to become clear and perfect, you’re never going to achieve your goals.