Procrastination isn’t just an annoying habit that we can’t help. When you run a business, it’s a fundamental issue that’s central to your life and financial well-being.
In fact, it can even bring your business down if you don’t address it quickly.
But what exactly is procrastination?
According to the Cambridge Dictionary, procrastinate means —
“to keep delaying something that must be done, often because it is unpleasant or boring”
Putting off difficult phone calls when you really need to make them, and delaying important jobs that would move your business forward, are just two examples of procrastination.
So why do we do it?
Why do we procrastinate?
Lack of structure in the working day can cause procrastination. Perfectionism, anxiety, and lack of self-confidence, are also typical reasons given when people procrastinate.
But sometimes, we simply don’t want to start a boring or difficult task because we feel stuck.
Although procrastination can make us happier in the short-term, at some point we feel annoyed and disappointed with ourselves for failing to start or finish a difficult task.
Whatever the reason, procrastination won’t help your business, so what can you do to overcome this feeling and achieve the success you know is within your reach?
How to deal with procrastination
Switch off notifications on your phone, including social media and emails, before you start work. Tell people you live with that you’ll be unavailable for a period of time, close the door if you can, and then start work.
Break down large tasks
If you’re tackling a large or complicated task, break it down into smaller pieces of work so you don’t feel overwhelmed. Tell yourself you’ll only work for 10 minutes, and then you can decide whether you want to carry on.
Once you’ve started you might be surprised by how you feel — it’s often the thought of starting that makes people procrastinate, so ‘trick’ yourself into it.
Change your environment
A change of scene is good for anybody, and can spark a period of focus and ‘flow.’ It’s surprisingly effective to work in a different room at home, or in the office if you can, especially if you need to be creative.
Changing your environment regularly could end procrastination, and help you overcome the desire to delay.
Focus on your goals
Look at the bigger picture of your business — what do you want to achieve this year, or over the next few years? By focusing on the longer-term future, you may be able to escape the damaging delays that affect your success, and take better control.
Allocate a specific time for the jobs you don’t like
If you allocate an hour each day to complete boring or difficult jobs, it might be all you need to beat procrastination. Again, it’s the time-limited period that helps your brain accept the situation and get started, knowing that it won’t be long before you can stop.
Stop procrastinating and unlock the key to success
You can achieve a great deal in an hour. Jobs that would previously have been put off for days, weeks, or even months, can be slowly tackled and finished with no feeling of overwhelm.
Eventually you won’t even think about it — you’ll begin a piece of work and just see it through to the end.
Being aware that you’re procrastinating is the first step in dealing with it, so try these tips and see the difference it makes to your motivation and productivity.
You’ll find yourself breezing through your to-do list and wondering what all the fuss was about.
If you liked reading this article, you might also like:
3 Ways Establish a Routine When You’re Working From Home
Routine is vital to your work from home success