Procrastination – we all do it, and we all feel guilty about it. But that guilt isn’t enough to break us of this bad habit. So how do you stop procrastinating? It’s time to stop putting off getting over your procrastination habits — don’t procrastinate solving procrastination!
Almost everyone procrastinates. In fact, a recent study found that 95% of people procrastinate at times and 20% of people are chronic offenders. Procrastination at work can have serious consequences. It hurts your earnings and prevents you from reaching individual and company-wide goals. Everyone procrastinates in different ways — maybe you’re procrastinating by reading this blog post right now! Here are some tips to stop procrastinating that work for every kind of procrastinator.
1. Create a Realistic Schedule
The first step to stopping procrastination is to create a realistic schedule to make the best use of your time. Block off small chunks of time in your day to work on different things. Make this schedule realistic. Don’t allot three hours for something you will only be able to focus on for thirty minutes. By creating a realistic schedule for your day, you can have a clear idea of what you should be doing at a given time and hold yourself accountable. Instead of saying “I’ll do it later” you can look at your schedule and see that the time to do it is right now!
2. Set small, attainable goals
Within your schedule, set goals to complete certain tasks by a certain time or date. Make these goals bite-sized and attainable. Once you start to hit these smaller goals, you’ll gain momentum and be motivated to keep working towards a final goal. Oftentimes, people procrastinate because they’re overwhelmed and don’t know where to start. Small goals can help make projects feel more manageable.
3. Give yourself regular breaks
Make sure to schedule in breaks! Regularly take a set amount of time to step away from your work and recharge. Get up, walk around, grab a snack — you’ll be much more focused after this break and ready to get back to work. If you know you only have to work for thirty minutes and then you’ll get a break, you’re more likely to stay focused for the entire work period.
4. Remove distractions
Create the optimal work environment by removing any potential distractions. If you tend to go on your phone to procrastinate, put it in the other room. If chatting with friends is your biggest distraction, work in an isolated spot. If you like to scroll through your timelines at work, block these sites on your work computer. Figure out what your biggest distractions are and clear them out of your work environment. When you don’t have anything else to do, you’re more likely to actually work.
5. Don’t be too hard on yourself
Instead of being angry with yourself and feeling guilty for procrastinating, move forward! Forgive yourself for your past procrastination and focus on how you’ll improve in the future. Dwelling on your procrastination will only waste more time and make you even more stressed.
6. Just start!
The only way to beat procrastination, is to start working. While easier said than done, making the decision to put the phone down or close that Facebook tab is a small first step that will put you on the road to breaking a bad habit. Starting is the hardest part — after you immerse yourself in your work, things get easier. Getting your work done is the only way to remove that guilt and stress you feel as a result of procrastination. It will help you to be more productive and reach your goals, whatever they may be.