Unless you have a work ethic that was carved by the Gawdz, you know what it feels like to procrastinate. Some of of us are worse than others (me), but this isn’t a time to point fingers (peeping emoji). Listen, if there was a procrastination or laziness contest, i would win first place and probably send someone to pick up the trophy for me after a couple days… weeks.. months. The bottom-line is that it is bad and i finally got to a point where I’d had enough of wasting my time. I decided i should do a write-up bout it to help others who have been or are in the same problem. Without anymore rambling, here is How to Fight Procrastination – A Real Plan.
I don’t think many of us really realise what an inconvenience and a time-waster procrastination really is. As a procrastinator, myself, i didn’t realise this until i tallied up all the hours and time i lost doing nothing. procrastination is a bad yet very common habit that affects almost everybody (which is comforting, i guess). For me, procrastinating got so bad, to a point where i would rather accept mark deductions than do work. It really sounds dumb when i say it out loud, wow.
But today, i am a lot better. I am not the most productive person, but i have improved so much that i feel bad when i am sitting and doing nothing. So, i have devised 10 pointers that helped ME overcome procrastination and get my groove back… like Stella did. (hah!)
10 WAYS TO OVERCOME PROCRASTINATION
FIND OUT WHAT CAUSES YOUR DISTRACTION
I find that it is so much easier to deal with a problem once you know the real cause of it and i apply this method in every singe part of my life. For me, my biggest distraction was lack of interest in school and this made me find almost everything else more interesting EXCEPT school. So, even though i did my assignments and did really well at school, i would always do things the night before or the morning of. I can’t even tell you what i was doing because i wasn’t going out or partying or anything. I would really just be enjoying lying in my bed and playing on my phone.
I was an A-list celebrity, thanks to Kim Kardashian, a Master Chef thanks to Cooking Fever. I owned an ENTIRE farm, land, animals and fish pond on Hayday and got high on sugar in Candy Crush :(.
FIND OUT WHAT YOU TURN TO WHEN YOU ARE DISTRACTED
Oh, this is always technology. I absolutely hate my phone for this because it always seems a lot more exciting to be on my phone when i have something to do. I would honestly finish a whole series in one day. How to get away with Murder? Yes please! Shameless? With ease! Its so bad that i would rather watch a series again than start doing work (wow).
The way out of this is to switch off your phone put it out of sight. Guys, its not a joke when we say ‘out of sight, out of mind’. You will not get it right the first time and you will most probably go and fetch it after a few minutes. But keep at it and you will get better at controlling the urge.
I was watching Brain Games once upon a time and they said that we touch our phones because we are always so curious and want to find out more; that’s why we are so addicted to social media, because there is something new every second (especially Twitter). So, channel your curiosity into something more productive.
If your weakness is talking to people around you or vice versa, remove yourself from the situation and let them know to refrain from distracting you.
SET GOALS FOR YOURSELF
The best thing I did for myself in 2016 is implement Goals and Strategic planning. I always thought i wasn’t this type of person or i could just wing it as i go, but nope. It does not work like that, i can tell you now. I started PENNING my goals. This means i started writing them down and having them displayed in an area where i was going to see them every day. This reinforces (both consciously and subconsciously) the goals in my mind and enables me to do them and be successful. Oh and did i mention the motivation you feel after completing something ON or BEFORE time? it’s such an amazing feeling, yo!
START WITH THE MORE DIFFICULT TASKS
Do what needs more brain energy first and end with the easy stuff. This is self-explanatory – you work on the cruicial and more significant tasks and spend your energy on them because they need it more. Another way is to prioritise your work; do what is most important first and what is least important last. It makes no sense to start with a task that is due in 2 weeks and leave one that is due in 3 days. This way, you develop a chronological way of undertaking your tasks. This goes back to penning down your goals; planning is VITAL if you want to overcome these tasks.
USE ORGANISATION APPS
Since we love our phones so much, this is where they can come in handy. There are numerous apps on the Apple and Play stores that will help you plan your day properly. Personally, i do not use this; i am old fashioned and i love writing things down. So, I don’t even have a single one to suggest to you :(. But these are simple to use, depending on the app – you plug in all your tasks and what time they need to be done and when the app should remind you to do them. If you are like any other 21st century human being, you will most probably have your phone in your hands anyway. Soon as the reminder pops up, its on YOUR onus to now get up and do your tasks. I mean, there is only so much technology can do for you!
When you are a lazy girl like me, you will look for short cuts until you find them. I had this really awesome app on my phone that I always used for my readings in University. What this app does, is summarize, give synopsis, key words and put things in ‘your own’ words for you. You will kill me because i forgot the name of this app and my iphone is dead, right now and needs some repairing. This App is blue and white in colour and all you have to do is take a picture of the page and it deciphers it for you! I did Politics, International Relations, Anthropology and Media Studies and the reading was beyond me. In my 3 years in University, i never read anything – thanks to this app and my magical skim-reading skills. Still got my As though!
ITS A LIFESTYLE CHANGE
I have realised that procrastination usually goes hand-in-hand with bad habits which include a poor diet, insufficient sleep and inactivity. This really does sound like previous me and i made the change that i needed. Today, i am adopting healthier eating habits, signing up at the Gym and participating in things that make me happy. Not everybody may be able to make these exact changes, and i am not asking anybody to. All i am saying is that you need to find something that will motivate you to change for the better.
DON’T BITE MORE THAN YOU CAN CHEW
I think it can be quite daunting being faced with a huge task to do. For example, lets say you have a 4000 word essay that you need to submit in two weeks and you need about 15 external sources from published researchers. Sounds daunting when you say as one big task, right? Take it and break it down into 13 parts to do over 13 days. Dedicate one day to figuring out what research you need and how you can get this research and which books to look at. For the next five days, you will be collecting 3 sources each day. That is 6 days down and 1 more week to go, now, so you better dedicate one day to extracting all the information you need. The following day, you are going to try and construct your essay with the information that you have acquired. You know have at least 5 days to do your essay with extra days to check for any improvements that you can make.
FORCE YOURSELF TO WORK
I often find that the thought of doing work makes work seem worse than it really is. Often, i start working and realise ‘hey, this ain even that bad’! So, when you are feeling lazy, just get up and start doing the task. Soon, you will get the hang of it and get lost in it (i know i do). You just really need to bring yourself to it. You know the saying ‘mind over matter’? that could work for you or it could work against you. Your mindset is what counts at the end of the day. Change that.
VISUALISE YOUR SUCCESS
Man, i am always talking about how successful i want to be. In speaking it, i realise what work i need to put into it so that it does become a reality! The best thing you can do for yourself, is create a vision board. If you don’t know what that is, you need to google some. basically it’s when you envision what makes you happy and what you want out of life, you go on the internet and find pictures and words that represent that. You take these and pin them on a frame that you see everyday and they remind you of your vision. We are visual beings and our minds respond well to visual signals – its a science!
Its not an easy step, but it is worth it. You will not get it overnight, so do not try to. If you do, you will fail dismally and that will not do anything for your motivation. Start slowly and take it a day at a time. i once read that people do not stop procrastinating until their life depends on it. And although this may be true, do not let it be your truth. Do not let it get that far before you actually start doing something about it.