Procrastination


. . . I've been wanting to write this post for some time now!

So instead of procrastinating any longer, I'll dive right in with some suggestions to deal with it.

 

1.  Recognize the condition of modern life is that of OVERLY-BUSY. It's just the way it is. Options proliferate. Responsibilities increase. Workload is on the rise. Information overloads us. Procrastination, for some, is a way of escape and denial.

 

2.  DISCIPLINE is not learned the way it once was. For many, it is not a value. In an overly-busy world, discipline is even more vital. You will have to make choices to learn the practice of discipline. This is a long term project (to start this week) that will take time to develop.

 

3.  In an overly-busy world, you have to set PRIORITIES. At the beginning of each week - take 10 minutes to write down - what MUST BE DONE this week. Then beside each item, write down the day you will do it.

 

4.  Now, do the same thing at the beginning of each day. It may only take 3-5 minutes. What must be done today. Make the list and get to it. I use lists all the time. They are invaluable. Whether you use paper or some software version that syncs between devices - make your lists.

 

5.  Do the HARD STUFF early. This one is huge for me. And I struggle with it. I put off the unpleasant tasks as long as possible. The longer I put them off, the easier it is not to do them at all. Especially if you are overly-busy. You will always have justifications for not doing the hard things. I have found that psychologically, the stress levels are far lower by attending to the Difficult - first thing. When I don't, they nag at me throughout the day. So - schedule them early.

 

6.  Do a 3-5 minute EXAMEN at the end of the day (or Work Day). An Examen is a backward reflection. Did you accomplish what you needed to accomplish? What about the Hard Stuff? Did it get done? 

 

7.  Strategic Planning is not a bad thing. For the longer lasting projects that take work sustained over a period of time, you have to be strategic and make a plan. The larger, longer and more complex your project is - the more important you PLAN IT OUT. Then follow the plan. I always have ongoing projects on my desk. I have learned to create RHYTHMS of daily implementation. The journey of a 1000 miles begins with one step. Today, what steps will I take for these bigger projects. 

 

8.  What else do you find helpful in working against procrastination?

 

Of course you can ignore all this and follow the strategy below. If you do - let me know how that is working for you?

 

 

Brian K. Rice
Leadership ConneXtions International

BrianRice@lcileaders.org