Everyone procrastinates from time to time.
Maybe there’s a few tasks you just can’t stand doing. Maybe it’s because there’s something else that you find very interesting and you can’t seem to pull yourself away from it.
Whatever the cause, you’ll need a solution to prevent your procrastination from damaging your productivity. As long as you can keep yourself from scrambling at the last minute to meet important deadlines, you’re on the right track.
Here are 6 ways to beat procrastination and increase productivity:
- Don’t Let Your Phone Get in the Way. When you have something important to do, shut off all of your notifications. If you can, turn your phone off altogether. A lot of people never intend to procrastinate on their phones, but text messages or calls often lead to unnecessary exploration on the internet or casual conversations that could have waited until after all their work was done.
- Be a Little Assertive. Are other people causing you to procrastinate? Sometimes, it might not be your fault if you’re a little off track. When people pop their heads in for a conversation that isn’t important and goes on for longer than necessary, or when someone calls a meeting that you could have probably skipped, you’ve wasted time you could have spent being productive. Start saying no in these situations.
- Give Yourself Enough Breaks. Procrastination often begins when a task feels endless. You feel like you’ve spent a decade of your life reviewing a single document, and you start finding other things to do. Instead, schedule regular breaks in the review process. Breaks give you an opportunity to clear your head and return to a task with a clear perspective.
- Don’t Do Things You Don’t Need to Do. If you’re being dragged down by voluntary projects, that’s the same as procrastinating. The stuff you actually need to do will always be more important. Make sure all the vital things are done first. If you have spare time and nothing else you’d rather be doing with that spare time, then you can pick up voluntary assignments or help others with their projects.
- Procrastinate Better Than You Were Before. Some people were just born to procrastinate. If you can’t help yourself sometimes, procrastinate by doing something else important. If you can’t get yourself in the right mindset to answer all of those emails, organize your desk. It had to get done anyway, and it gives you enough time to prepare before you transition into the next task.
- Give Yourself Something for a Job Well Done. What was that thing you desperately wanted to do while you were procrastinating? If you overcame your urge, you deserve to do it when everything important is done. Watch three episodes of your favorite show on Netflix. Spend two hours reading your favorite tech blog. It’s all good once you’ve handled all of your responsibilities – your procrastination tasks of choice will then become your reward for being responsible.
Procrastinate with a Plan
There’s nothing inherently wrong with being a procrastinator unless you allow it to become a problem.
Many creative people are procrastinators, and they procrastinate because they’re exploring different concepts.
Just be sure you’re getting your work done on time.
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