I have procrastinated writing this blog on laziness and procrastination (the irony 😂) I’m starting with such an honest opening statement because as I share with you some of the things that are working for me, I need you to understand that I’m not a pro but if I’m able to work on this then you also can so join me in this journey.
This past week I’ve been reading and watching videos on this issue and the tips given are similar across most of the materials I came across. Part of why I was reading is because I want to add some tips from experts since as I admitted, I’m not yet a pro who has mastered this bad habit. I call it a habit because habits can be broken. So yes, we can break this and I’d love to hear from you what you’ve been doing to help yourself break this bad habit. I don’t have a ‘5 steps to break free from procrastination’ kind of thing and I’m sorry if that’s what you expected 😄 but I’m going to mention some things that have worked for me and others that I’m trying out;
1. I’m not a procrastinator… I have a habit of procrastinating:
What I noticed about myself is that the more I use certain adjectives to describe myself, the more accepting I become of them. This goes for both positive and negative things. I’d find myself not doing things because I’m a procrastinator anyway, I used it to define me. Then I came across a video that talked about procrastination as a bad habit that can be broken. And if it can be broken, then I do not want to use it to define myself. I don’t want to speak it into my life. The difference is in my mind but it’s helped me as I deal with it because my mind is now aware that procrastination is not part of us, but a bad habit we develop that can be broken.
I’m currently reading a book called ‘The Success Principles’ by Jack Canfield. I LOVE this book. It’s very practical or maybe it’s just the kind of book I need at this point in my life. Canfield defines mind mapping as a simple but powerful process for creating a to-do list for achieving your goal. Mind mapping helps you determine what you need in order to achieve your goals. Basically, you think about your goals, see yourself do them, then work backwards by asking yourself, “What did I need to do to accomplish that?”
Sometimes we procrastinate because our goals and tasks are so big that we don’t know where to start, so we choose to postpone when to start until it’s too late sometimes. So mind–mapping helps you visualize as you write down the things you need to do and you’ll notice how happy you feel just by imagining that you’ve reached your goal. For some of you it could be a business idea you have but you don’t know where to start. Mind Map! As you do so, who did you see helping you? What kind of tools do you need? How do you see yourself getting the kind of help you need to get that project? Write it down and take action.
3. Love your mornings:
I’ll be honest, I struggled with laziness and procrastination throughout the day whenever I slept longer than I should. And this still happens. How I start my day easily affects my productivity throughout the day. I’m now more intentional on waking up early (you know what time you should wake up depending on the kind of work you do) , shower , do my devotion, pray, read a good book then close my eyes and just visualize. Most times I visualize where I see myself in a couple of years then go through my day in my mind. I feel so fresh whenever I do this and so psyched for the day. Just try to create a productive morning routine and let me know how it goes. It could easily boost your productivity.
4. Identify the stress:
I’ve noticed that for me, sometimes, procrastination is as a result of certain stress I’m going through. I thank God most areas of my life like family, friends etc. don’t bring me stress but my businesses can really bring me stress. The stress then leads to laziness and procrastination. I don’t want to work, set goals, be productive not because I’m a procrastinator, but because I have something stressing me that is leading to lack of motivation. So nowadays, when I find myself procrastinating especially when it comes to my work, I ask myself what could be causing some stress in me. Don’t be hard on yourself, because sometimes your lack of motivation leading to laziness and procrastination could be a sign that you need to deal with something.
5. Avoid distractions:
Most times when you procrastinate, you substitute your task with a distraction. Rarely do we just look up in the sky! For me, Instagram and Twitter were it. So I decided that I’ll only be logging in between 8-10pm and there are times I don’t. I’d wake up in the morning and waste so much time between the 2 apps. For you it could be YouTube, a certain novel or series. You need to do something about it. Allocate time during the day or week to do it if it’s necessary.
Finally, just start! Work towards breaking the bad habit. Stop procrastinating doing something about procrastination. Let’s do this!!