If you want to stop procrastinating, you need to learn how. Many folks simply don’t have the motivation to stop procrastinating. Maybe they didn’t watch that Ted Talk or listen to that podcast. Whatever the reason, there are some simple tricks that will finally help you stop procrastination once and for all. Hello everyone and welcome to thebestmind.net. In this article, we're going to learn about three simple tricks to stop procrastinating.
Procrastinate with feeling
This is going to sound strange, so just bear with me. What is a consistent and effective trick to stop procrastinating? To procrastinate less, you need to procrastinate more. Don't worry, I'll explain. Just think about the last time you procrastinated, did you abandon your work or did you pretend to be working when you actually weren't?
Most people don't plan on procrastinating. When they procrastinate, they're trying to restart their work, but distractors keep pulling them away and this push and pull can go on for hours. In the end, nothing gets done.
Let's say you're supposed to be doing research you have. Your research open in one tab and social media open in the other. You glance back and forth, so your attention is split. You're not really doing research, but you're not focusing on your social media either. Let's call this fifty percent procrastinating. When you procrastinate like this, you're making the problem worse, you're alternating between your work and your distractors without accomplishing either one.
50 percent procrastination can be exhausting. You tell yourself that you're working, but you're really not. You tell yourself that you're procrastinating, but you're not doing that either. It's a never-ending cycle of denial, ridicule and guilt and those emotions can drive you crazy. So, stop procrastinating with half your energy.
If you want to procrastinate, go all the way. Commit 100 to your procrastination or just don't do it at all. If you don't want to work, stop pretending to work, close your projects, stand up from your desk, go into another room and separate yourself from your workspace.
During this time, don't think about your work and don't feel guilty that you're not working. Just enjoy the time you spend away from your projects. Right now, you're craving a distraction, but craving a distraction is like craving ice cream. If you're craving something, satisfy that craving and it will go away. When you procrastinate 100 percent, you successfully satisfy that craving and when that happens, you start craving something else, work.
Now's the perfect time to dive back in your projects and when I say dive back in, I mean really dive in. Just like your procrastination, you give 100 percent of yourself to your work or you don't work at all. Over time, your brain will create a boundary between your work and your distractors. When you separate them, you waste less of your time. 100 percent procrastination actually increases your work ethic and your productivity.
The novelty of procrastination wears off faster. You're less likely to waste time when you're not putting something off. Distractors like social media lose their appeal because you're not avoiding your work. This weird trick ultimately increases the amount of work you get done.
If you alternate between 100 percent work and 100 percent procrastination, you're using your work time and downtime more effectively. You feel more productive when you work, because you chose to work and on the flip side you feel more relaxed when you procrastinate because you chose to procrastinate.
So, don't waste any more time pretending to work. Commit one way or the other. Become a better procrastinator to improve your work ethic.
Plan around procrastination
There are two kinds of workers: the first thrives under pressure. They need that urgency to motivate and energize them. The second panics under pressure. When expectations get too high, they crumble under the weights. Which one describes you? If you don't know, just think about your work and study habits because the way you work also describes the way you procrastinate.
Just take this situation: student A and student B are studying for a test in two weeks. Student A works better under pressure, while student B panics before a deadline. Both students procrastinate until the last 24 hours before their test, but only one of these students is actually procrastinating, is it student A or student B? Student A is not procrastinating, they're playing to their strengths. This student is what we call an active procrastinator.
This comes from a 2017 study in The Journal Of Personality And Individual Differences. An active procrastinator delays their work to improve their performance. Student A works best under pressure, so they choose to start later. On the surface, it looks like procrastination, but the quality of their work increases. Student B is a passive procrastinator. They're ignoring their strengths by putting off their work. They should start working early because they struggle under pressure, but they choose not to. They delay their work and their productivity suffers.
What does this mean for you? If you thrive under pressure, then procrastinate with purpose. Be an active procrastinator, force yourself into high pressure positions and challenge yourself to succeed. If you don't work well under pressure, then avoid high pressure situations. Otherwise, the pressure will impact your performance. Find pockets of time where the pressure is lowest and do your work stress-free.
In other words, identify what kind of procrastinator you are, then schedule your work around your procrastination. If you procrastinate at the right times, you can be productive no matter what you're working on.
Fail on purpose
A big project may feel impossible. You're standing at the starting line, but the finish line looks unbearably far away. As you stare across this massive distance, you feel discouraged, you think about giving up and most of the time, you do.
Many people procrastinate because they're scared of the distance. Just think about a challenging project, like writing an essay. Are you afraid of writing one word? No. Are you afraid of writing one paragraph? Probably not, but writing an entire essay feels like a huge undertaking. So, you hesitate, procrastinate and avoid your responsibilities.
The more you avoid something, the scarier it gets. At first, your essay feels like running a mile difficult, but doable. After a week of procrastination, one mile turns into 10 miles and after a month the finish line feels hundreds of miles away and you lose hope, but there's one weird trick you can use to stop procrastinating. This trick will help you overcome the immense distance from start to finish. So, instead of looking at the finish line, look straight at the ground.
In other words, don't think about finishing your project, don't think about your end goal or how much works required. If you want to stop procrastinating, there's only one thing you need to worry about: the challenge that's right in front of you; the first word you write, the first step you take and the first obstacle you face.
When tackling a big project, the first thing you is making a plan. You try to solve all your problems at the beginning. Naturally, you feel overwhelmed. You're overwhelmed by the work, the challenges and the possibilities. Instead of jumping over one hurdle at a time, you're trying to overcome every hurdle at once and that's a recipe for disaster.
This common practice is no different from perfectionism. You want to smooth every bump in the road before you get there, but this weird trick will change the way you think. You're no longer planning every solution before you start, you're overcoming hurdles as you encounter them and you're solving your problems in real time.
This trick helps with more than just procrastination, it also improves the quality of your work. Planning to some degree ensures that you're moving in the right direction. You should plan your work before you get started, but don't expect your plan to be foolproof.
No matter how much time you spend planning, you'll never predict the future. You never know what opportunities will come knocking. You never know when a roadblock will ruin your plan. When these things do happen, your plan will change. You'll have to set new goals, think of creative solutions and adapt to the situation.
Don't worry about planning every single step. Don't worry about getting from start to finish. Don't panic about writing an entire essay or accomplishing a long-term goal. Instead, try this: form a loose plan. Just stop thinking 10 steps ahead and face your first obstacle. Right now, the first problem is all that matters.
As you start making progress, remind yourself that you don't have to finish today. You don't have to be perfect and it's more than okay to fail. In fact, some people fail on purpose. Instead of trying to be perfect, they do a terrible job. They let their work suffer. They create something they would never show to anyone, because perfection is intimidating, but imperfection is not.
Anyone can do a mediocre job, so that's all you have to do. When you create a terrible first draft, you're overcoming the hardest part of the process. You're no longer paralyzed at the starting line. Now, you're fighting through the middle and that's a good feeling.
So, get started. Be awful. Create something you know is below your standards and when you're done, take a second pass, maybe a third. As you fix the problems, you'll realize something: the finish line wasn't nearly as far as you thought.
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