You Only Need 20 Minutes To Accomplish More
Most of us tend to procrastinate, do you know why? Usual response is “Because of laziness.” That is not necessarily true, you know. Actually, there are valid explanations for procrastination and there are really simple solutions to overcome it.
We don’t know where to start.
This is particularly true when we are facing a big project. We are so overwhelmed that we just don’t know where to begin. The solution is to break down the project into “bite size” pieces. Simplifying the steps makes each step more doable. Once you get stuck somewhere, simplify further. This dilemma is similar to — when we ask how a tasty dish is made and our friend says “Oh, that’s easy, I add this ..this…and this.” While in your mind, you are like, hmmm sounds like easier than done. Good recipes have detailed instructions and provide as much information needed to replicate the process.
We are group-oriented creatures.
As the old saying goes, “No man is an island.” No matter how introverted you may be, you also feel the pangs of loneliness. Accountability is a big thing. This is why we hire coaches in our lives to make sure we get things done and perform at our highest level. Athletes, performers, CEOs and even us ordinary folks sometimes need a professional to help us. Solicit the help of family and friends, having your own cheer leading squad to motivate you is beneficial.
This is why I enjoy group fitness classes! I do not like the gym. Period. But having your peers inspire and encourage you to be better definitely make a huge difference. A friendly challenge also comes in handy at certain times.
Perfectionism blocks our inability to move.
If you are like me, as a perfectionist, either I do everything perfectly or none at all. I have seen other people waiting for the perfect moment, the perfect job, the perfect body before they start living. While it is admirable to aim for excellence, for perfection, this also poses a major issue. I am not the one to say consider “good enough” but if putting off what needs to be done for the sake of perfection is detrimental. There are exceptions when perfect could be attained only after you have launched. Consider test driving on your way to perfection.
Set the stage for success.
I have a habit of preparing the night before, all the things I will need the following day. A habit I learned from childhood, thanks to my paternal grandmother and am definitely passing this on to my daughter. When I used to attend the five in the morning CrossFit class, I prepare my workout clothes, socks, shoes, down to my water bottle and protein shake in my shaker bottle the night before. Waking up early is not easy but knowing that I have everything ready gives me no excuse not to get up and get going.
Now that procrastination or the main cause of not getting things done is out of the way. Let’s move on to freeing up time.
Consider what you could accomplish in 10 minutes or 20 minutes. It does not seem a lot of time but using small blocks of time to accomplish tasks rather than waiting large amounts of uninterrupted time to take care of things is more powerful than you think.
How often do you pause, look at your phone and browse your social media? More likely you end up spending at least 1 hour or even more doing this…right? As Judy Warmington of Woman Time Management said, “ You have to take time, to make time.” You need to claim time to do something that you have been wanting to do, start with limiting yourself on your phone or gluing yourself in front of the T.V. Ask me about TV shows and I will just stare at you, we do not watch T.V. shows or even the news at home. Not watching T.V. is a conscious decision we made in order to make room for other things we prefer to do like family movie night, practice a foreign language, family cook night, etc
I put on a timer to keep me on track and this is a very effective practice. I use 20 minute blocks of time in checking off my tasks for the day. Once the timer goes off, I move on to the next task as needed.
In 20 minutes, you can complete a workout, read a chapter from a book, or tune in to a podcast show/audio book. In 10 minutes, you are able to clean out your wallet, organize a drawer, write a note, or read a story to your child. In five minutes, you can make a quick phone call, empty the dishwasher, or sort your mail. In one minute, you can make your bed, review your calendar for events, or check the fridge for items that need to be restocked. In 5 seconds, you can make a decision to DO MORE…5–4–3–2–1 …GO!