Finding time can be a lifesaver – especially when you are running out of it with each tick of the clock and a waiting task looms! And how about when that looming task is something you’ve procrastinated about?
I bet you know the project I mean. It’s the one you found out about five weeks ago but have not worked on yet. Yes, that one. The one you kept saying that you would get to tomorrow.
Now, suddenly it’s today … and that deadline is tomorrow!
Here are 5 Things to NOT do when you find yourself in this situation:
1. DON’T panic.
2. DON’T beat yourself up for choices already made.
3. DON’T give up and throw in the towel.
4. DON’T keep procrastinating for even one more second.
5. DON’T leave town, change your identity, or purchase a disguise.
You see, if procrastination is a challenge that you’re grappling with, the details may vary from one situation to the next, but the basic story remains the same. The plot line involves very familiar twists and turns for many of us - namely putting something off, or letting other priorities get in the way of completing a task, until it’s too late, or nearly so.
And when your time choices lead you there, that sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach almost always makes you want to disappear. BUT, showing up is the best and most powerful antidote. Face your situation squarely, do what you can, and then, when due dates aren’t looming, work to address the core issues.
To successfully complete your task, you’ll need to set new patterns in place. Commit to making your next project a much more timely success. You can use the tips below as building blocks for better time choices from this point forward.
5 Tips to Help You Stop Procrastinating and Get the Job Done.
1. DO create a boundary.
2. DO gather your tools.
3. DO define your task.
4. DO get started.
5. DO keep in mind that DONE is better than perfect!
Let’s unpack those tips just a bit, to help you start fast and keep going!
1. Create a boundary. Let others know you need undisturbed time until your project is completed. Enlist their support, if needed. Direct your full attention and energy to the task at hand.
2. Assemble your tools. What do you need to complete your task? A computer? Papers from work? Coffee? Pull it all together so you aren’t distracted or stopped in your tracks by not having what you need.
3. Define your task. Envision your end point, and brainstorm what you need to reach it. Find the most direct route by letting simplicity be your guide. If you get caught up in the details, recognize that as a big red flag. Now’s the time for translating thought into action.
4. Get started. This is THE top priority. Take that first step and once you get started, keep going. Do not let anything stop you. Doubts and interruptions need to be on the shelf. If you hit bumps, just keep moving. You need to give yourself small breaks to stay fresh and focused, AND be sure to set a time frame for them and return to your task quickly.
5. Finish. Remember, your goal is absolutely not perfection. Yes, you want to do your best, but the goal right now is to get to the end of your task on schedule. Once you’ve finished, you can go back and polish your work if you have time.
BONUS TIP: Try thinking of your finished product as a starting point rather than an endpoint! That can help a lot, if perfectionism contributes to your procrastination.
Once you have gotten out of that corner you backed yourself into, give yourself some heartfelt kudos! You can become your own hero and rescue yourself from a life of urgency and avoidance! With practice, you will experience increasing success at finding time.
Now, ask yourself: What is your next step to beat procrastination and find time?
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Offered by Paula Eder, PhD, The Time Finder Expert.
Paula Eder, PhD, the SelfGrowth.com Official Guide to Time Management, is an internationally-known coach and published author who mentors spirit-driven solopreneurs and small business owners to align their core values and energy with their time choices and behaviors so that they can make more money, create more freedom, and find more time.
Living on a working farm in rural New Hampshire, Paula's connection with time is as organic, spiritual, and down-to-earth practical as the vitality and resiliency of the seasons. From her base in New Hampshire she has maintained a thriving coaching practice for the past 35 years; is a Certified Coach in Kendall Summerhawk's Money Breakthrough Method™ Program; and is a certified graduate of the Vanguard class of the Authentic Happiness Coaching Program conducted by Martin E. P. Seligman, PhD and Ben Dean, PhD.
Her Heart-Based Time Management System helps busy people just like you develop the skills to make authentic time choices that lead to work success, personal growth, vibrant health, and an ever-deepening relationship with yourself and those you love.
To learn more about Paula's unique, Heart-Based Time Management System and begin your transformational journey, sign up for her Finding Time Success Kit. Discover how you can find time for what matters most.