Procrastination is like a prison – a self-fulfilling prophecy of denial, delay, frustration and failure. But that doesn't have to be the end of the story – not by a long shot!
Finding time by overcoming procrastination is definitely within your reach. However, it requires more than efficiency tools. You will become much more effective and efficient with your time as you develop successful strategies to recognize and resolve the conflicts (both internal and external) that so often fuel procrastination.
Think about it: Do you sometimes find yourself feeling resentful at work or at home? And do you notice that this smoldering resentment can lead to undermining yourself? For example, have you ever procrastinated about a task or project that everyone was counting on you to complete?
It feels awful, but if you dive under the surface, you may find that there was a pay-off buried in there. And if that's the case, don't get down on yourself. Avoid the additional traps of rationalizing, blaming others, or deciding you're a terrible person and just giving up on yourself.
All that these things do is add to the self-sabotage and deprive you of even more of your valuable time!
1. Face Yourself Squarely: If anger is driving your time-wasting choices, don't judge yourself. Just monitor that internal muttering. You may notice familiar messages like:
• "I don't want to!" This is your bratty resistance speaking. How old are you when you say this? Try picturing yourself at age three, scowling, hands on hips, stamping your foot.
• "I don't have to! You can't make me!" You may be a little bit older here, voicing rebellion. But step back and ask yourself if you are truly supporting yourself or just proving you can say no to another person's request?
• "I forgot!" This is a more insidious response, defying someone you're angry at by undermining the project. You may do this two ways, either completing your task late or never completing it at all. No matter what, this always leads to a loss of trust.
2. Recognize the 'Payoffs' of Procrastination and See Them for What They Are: Your power to use time productively depends on identifying and changing your motivation. If you haven't owned up to what drives your choice to procrastinate, explore these true/false statements now and see what emerges. Ask yourself:
• T / F Do you enjoy holding things up?
• T / F Do you feel you can't say no to a task, but you can drag your heels about doing it?
• T / F Is your delaying tactic sending a message you can't say aloud?
• What are some other payoffs that come to mind?
3. Utilize These Strategies to Stop Procrastinating:
• Identify the situation you resent. Be specific. You can't control or change others' personalities, but you can exercise power in your situation by relating more responsibly.
• Brainstorm alternatives. You may find solutions that work for everyone.
• Develop assertiveness. Negotiate directly and appropriately. As you work at this you'll become more skillful at setting boundaries and resolving conflicts.
• Step into your power! Envision how much power you can exercise over your life. Make these images specific and concrete. Practice looking to yourself to make your life work.
Ending procrastination and letting go of its imagined pay-offs eases tensions at work, at home, and inside of you. It is also one of the most direct and effective paths toward increasing your real power and finding time!
And to move toward your Heart-Based Time Success, sign up for our free gift, the Finding Time Success Kit, which includes "The New Finding Time Boundary Template: 9 Simple, Sequential Steps to Find More Time and Recharge Your Energy!" Using a workbook format this powerful and practical time template helps you progress beyond disappointment and frustration. Discover that 24 hours really are enough!
Offered by Paula Eder, Ph.D., The Time Finder Expert.
Paula Eder, PhD is an internationally-known coach and published author who specializes in mentoring heart-based entrepreneurs and small business owners, from the inside out, to align their core values and energy with their time choices and behaviors to make more money, create more freedom, and find more time.
You can learn more about Paula’s unique, Heart-Based Time Management™ System and begin your transformational journey by signing up for her Finding Time Success Kit at http://thetimeschool.com/SuccessKit. Follow your heart-based path to finding time for what matters most.