INSIDE: Procrastination effects can have dramatic results in our lives, so much so that you’re probably left to wonder why you procrastinate over and over again. Here are 7 procrastination tips to help you overcome it from here on out.
It’s not uncommon to reach the end of a week only to realize that the ideas we had sketched out in our minds didn’t quite come to fruition, for one reason or another.
Sometimes, it’s due to an unforeseen event. At other times, it’s because a task turns out to be a bigger job than expected. But, many times, it’s simply procrastination.
In some cases, the simple fear of procrastination is enough to make us work harder. For others, it’s really easy to let procrastination rule our lives. But in the end, there aren’t many people who don’t suffer from procrastination effects.
Let’s take a look at why you procrastinate, the toxic procrastination effects, and 7 procrastination tips to help you find the motivation to resist it.
Why You Procrastinate
There are many ways that procrastination lures us in and holds us captive. Here are some of the most common ones…
Nostalgia Draws Us In
In any form of deep cleaning you might do around the home, or any major renovation project, you can guarantee that you will at some stage come face-to-face with a memory, whether it’s a shopping receipt, movie ticket stub or some piece of ephemera picked up on a holiday.
It doesn’t matter what it is. These little pieces stir a memory, and it’s easy to get lost in nostalgia.
We Get Sidetracked
Then there are the times where you just get caught up in the moment. For example, if you’re cleaning out your garage, you might find an item you bought years ago and were holding on to in case it came in handy later.
In this case, it’s tempting to start playing around with it when what you should be doing is organizing. You can lose a lot of time in those instances.
We Are Avoiding Something
Probably the most common answer for why you procrastinate is due to simply wanting to avoid an unpleasant task.
If you’re about to do your taxes or compile a cost-sensible budget, part of your mind will look for any excuse to do something else, unless of course you love that kind of thing.
Instead of calling on your archangel of abundance and directing yourself to the task ahead, it’s easy to get distracted by the sudden need to reorganize your kitchen or something less intensive.
This displacement activity costs you time, and the hard task still needs to be done in the end.
Procrastination Effects & Why They Are Toxic
One of the more obvious problems with procrastination is that it prevents you from meeting a challenge head-on and completing it. But there are plenty of other reasons why procrastination effects are toxic as well.
Your To Do List Piles Up
One of the worst procrastination effects is that it leads to complete and utter overwhelm because as things aren’t getting done, they are piling up on your to do list.
For me, I love being able to check something off my list, and sometimes that’s enough to make me do it.
The more you put something off, the more you turn it into an insurmountable obstacle in your mind. It’s not worth it!
You Let People Down
No matter why you procrastinate, in the end, you are definitely going to let someone down by not accomplishing what you needed to.
Whether that’s your boss, a teacher, a customer, your husband or child, or even just yourself, it will happen. And if you do it often enough, it will lead to a lack of trust.
It Costs You Money
If you procrastinate paying your bills or taking care of certain monetary situations, procrastination effects can leak money from your wallet pretty darn fast.
It Can Cause Major Issues in Your Life
If you procrastinate waking up in the morning, you can end up being late to work each morning. If you procrastinate your work tasks, you can disappoint your boss or customers. Either way, it can cost you your job.
No matter what part of your life is being procrastinated, it will have an effect, and it won’t be pretty.
7 Procrastination Tips You Can Implement Today
When all is said and done, putting an end to procrastination will have a positive effect on your life. So, here are 7 procrastination tips to help you do that…
Make Monthly, Weekly & Daily Lists
Sometimes, procrastination comes from just not being organized and remembering what needs to be done when.
By making a list of what you need to accomplish this month, you can then make a list of what needs to get done this week, and then what you need to do today.
BONUS TIP: If you love checking things off a list like I do, make little boxes next to each item so you can put an X in the box when it’s done. I love this much more than crossing it off, but maybe I’m just weird 😉
Find Pockets of Time
If you find that you’re procrastinating because you don’t have time to accomplish a certain task, see if you can break it up into pockets of time.
For example, when we wanted to redo the landscaping in our front flowerbed, we had to first dig up hundreds of large river rocks that the previous owner had put there instead of mulch. Instead of spending a whole weekend on it, we did it in half hour increments over a few weeks.
Yes, this will make the project take a while to get done, but hey, at least it will get done!
Make it as Easy as Possible to Start
There are probably plenty of reasons why you procrastinate, and I bet one of the most common is because you just don’t know where to start.
So, sit down and brainstorm what you need to get started. Then, as you have time, start getting all of that in place.
For example, if you keep putting off exercising, do everything you can to make it super easy to get started. For example, you could do things like:
- Get a set of dumbbells
- Sign up for an exercise program
- Map out some places to walk, jog, or bike near you
- Get yourself some workout clothes or shoes
- Research what types of exercises you would enjoy most
Sign Up for a Challenge
Another way to get your butt into gear is to find a way to motivate yourself. A great way to do that is to sign up for a challenge.
Sticking to the exercise theme (since let’s face it, that’s one of the biggest things we women procrastinate), by signing up for a 30-day exercise challenge, you have a goal to work towards and you can do it alongside the other people who are doing the challenge.
Make it Fun
Since we usually procrastinate because we are putting off things that we don’t want to do, one of the best antidotes to procrastination is to make the task fun.
Let’s go back to the exercise example. If you hate aerobic activity or lifting weights, think about what you would actually enjoy that would be fun.
You could look into dance classes around you or go hiking, for example. There’s always a way to make exercise more enjoyable.
Reevaluate Its Importance
Not everything that is on our to do list is as important as we think it is. I know I have things that have been on my to do list for years, so honestly is it really that important?
For me, I know it’s time to take inventory. I’m going to go through my list and delete things I simply don’t need to worry about, outsource things I will probably never do but are important, and re-prioritize things that I really need to get done.
Finally, one of the easiest tips is just to start. Many times, we dread doing a task but once we actually start, we realize it isn’t so bad and we can just push through until we’re done.
Need some motivation? Try this Fast Track Guide to Getting Motivated & Achieving Your Goals
Final Thoughts About Procrastination Effects
When faced with a task you want to avoid, the best thing you can do is be defiant against those toxic procrastination effects and get on with it.
The more you do this, the more efficient you’ll be, the more accomplished you’ll feel, and the more aligned your life will be.
You might even learn a way of doing things that makes those dreaded tasks a lot less draining!