Face it, we all put things off. We leave the hard stuff till last and hope that it somehow gets dropped off our "to do" list. We find other things to do that are "more important." It's just amazing how many "emergencies" can pop up to lead us away from taking the action we need towards our goals. Procrastination takes many forms, and all those forms are just ways of avoiding the things we need to or want to do to achieve an end result - success.

Why do we do it? Why do we procrastinate? Well, because we view tasks as difficult or unpleasant, of course. We have a fear about what we need to do, or doubts about whether we will actually be able to do it. Procrastination is drenched with fear and doubt. It leads people to self destructive behaviors like overeating, drinking, even watching TV, just to get away from the feelings of overwhelm, guilt and shame that it causes. We'll find any excuse to do those things that we fear, eventually just deciding that it wasn't that important anyway. Here's an example...

My client was recently laid off from her job, so she decided that now would be the perfect time for her to start her own home business. She's a very smart lady, and a talented graphic artist with many contacts in the business world. We devised a business plan for her to start her own consulting business where she would provide graphics services to people that she had done work for before, and to get referrals from them for additional clients. She was very excited about being able to work from home, set her own hours and make more money than she would if she had a "job."

She got up that Monday morning with her list of potential clients, ready to point them to her new website, give them quotes and get some business. But as she looked at the list, she kept thinking of all the things she still needed to do. Didn't she need a brochure? What if they asked her to mail something. Her business cards were on order, but they hadn't come back yet...What if she got too many jobs at once, how would she be able to handle it? By the time of our session on Thursday, she hadn't made the first phone call. Every time she looked at the phone, she felt a flood of feelings - guilt, fear, anger at herself...especially for putting off something she thought would be so simple.

My poor client had been putting herself through hell for almost a week over a few phone calls - I bet you've done just about the same thing. She just didn't know how to work through the procrastination. Here's what we did to move her through it...

First, we found the fear. The fear wasn't about making the calls, it was about not feeling like she was good enough to sell her services. Time for self esteem work. Once she really accepted that her work was excellent, her resistance to calling her clients diminished.

Then we set a goal. She was to talk to 5 people per day. Just 5. Before lunch. If she went to a breakfast meeting and introduced herself to 5 people or more, she was done for the day!

Then she committed to swallow the frog. Sounds gross, right? What would you do if you knew you had to eat a frog today? Would you leave it till the last minute, so you had to worry about it all day? Goodness knows what kind of stories you'd have made up by the end of the day... How much energy does that waste? You'd want to do it right away, to get it over with - then you could make up stories about how strong and brave you were. Same thing with the hard stuff. She had 2 phone calls she was dreading - that was getting in her way of making any phone calls at all. She committed to swallowing the frog right away - sitting right there in my office! Once she was done, she had a job from a client, and another that was going to look at her website! Swallow the frog, my friends...

Then we put some accountability into her marketing efforts. At the end of every week, she put together a report that showed all her marketing efforts and the results, and emailed them to her new "accountability partner," a close friend that also had a business and was willing to partner with her to keep each other accountable for their progress. This was an amazing motivator for her! Many times, what we won't do for ourselves, we will do for others.

After her first 2 months in business, she has replaced her income and is on her way to making even more money, with much more flexibility and balance in her life. So, if you tend to procrastinate, take these steps and see how it will propel you forward in your goals.

Join my newsletter at http://www.bodymindhypnosis.com - the Powerful Motivation Program will be released next month - just in time for all those New Years' resolutions!

Author's Bio: 

Tracey Buchard, Hypnotist, Instructor, Life Coach, Author and Producer of Hypnosis CDs and MP3 downloads. Tracey has an active practice in the Orlando area, and also coaches clients through email and by phone. Sign up for Tracey’s weekly newsletter – Inspiration News, to get a weekly quote, tips on living the ultimate life, and a weekly challenge – http://www.bodymindhypnosis.com. Interested in hypnosis CD’s or MP3s? http://www.cdonlinewarehouse.com.