Crafty Ways to Feel Better & Stop Procrastinating
What if you gave yourself a dollar for every time you said, “Oh, I’ll do that later.” If I did that, I would be off on a cruise right now spending all of those dollars, instead of writing this blog!
Yes, I am one of the official card carrying procrastinators of the Western world. In fact, I may be an honorary president!
If you can relate all too well to the problem, don’t despair, there are lots of smart ways out there to run right around procrastination, and power on through with all of the things we want to do and the others that we have to do.
Social psychologist and author, Heidi Halvorson tackled the subject on the CBS Morning Show recently, and pointed out how procrastination carried to its endpoints can seriously mess up health, careers and personal relationships.
Just off hand I can think of a couple brilliant people who are muddling along, rather than counting their millions, simply because they keep pushing things to the backburner. I can think of others who now face critical health issues or severed relationships because they just kept dragging their feet. So get moving before you get into any of those deep waters and start using all of the tricks you can think of to stop procrastinating.
Steps to Stop Procrastinating
Make lists and post them where you cannot avoid them on the fridge or the computer.
Set up dates with yourself. Halvorson says this works best if you say, 'I'm going to call my mother after dinner, like around 7 o'clock,” instead of just saying, “I’m going to call my mother later.” That ups the success rate about four times.
Be specific about tasks, not giving yourself much wiggle room as you list and check them off. That makes them harder to avoid and more appealing to tackle.
Use treats and alarms to push and pull yourself toward project deadlines.
Start conditioning yourself to feeling what it is like to get things done, rather than using the familiar ‘later’ approach.
Start posting pictures or other visuals around of rewards that you will get when you meet all of your deadlines with no hassles.
Halvorson also makes a serious point about spotting persistent procrastinators. You can decide if you or someone in your family fits this pattern. Unlike every day procrastinators, these people put off important issues like going to the doctor.
These are the people who have procrastinated until their lives are seriously falling apart. In most cases they are impulsive by nature and have a hard time controlling emotions.
If you feel this fits you or someone close to you, seek help at once. You can start with your doctor and see about getting a specialist to get life back on track.