Do you ever find yourself not doing things that you should? If you say no, I don’t believe you 🙂 Everybody does it. It’s even got its own word.
The Cambridge Dictionary defines it as:
“To keep delaying something that must be done, often because it is unpleasant or boring.”
There are many reasons for why we procrastinate. I will talk about two common ones, and I will also try to show you a way around them that actually might work.
THE FIRST ONE is a misconception we have of how mankind works. We often sit down and wait for inspiration to come, and then, then we will make miracles, we will do the greatest we’ve ever done, we will amaze you! You just wait and see…
I’ve got news for you. It doesn’t work that way.
It is actually the other way around. Start doing something, and the inspiration will come to you. Start coding, building, writing, cleaning, gardening or whatever, and you will soon find that the motivation sneaks up on you, and before you know it, you can’t stop yourself. You are inspired.
So, to get around this one, just do it. Do not be afraid to take the first step. That is the key to success.
Even scheduling it may help, if you are the planning kind. It is an extra help to get started.
THE SECOND. I often find myself just sitting there and not really being able to start, it just seems too hard! Too much!
So I do other things instead, that are easier to get started with.
The problem could be that it is hard because it is a big task. It seems impossible to do. Or it could also be that because it’s so big, you can’t see any details, you just don’t know where to start.
There is a simple solution: Break it down into smaller pieces.
All big tasks have many smaller tasks inside it. It’s like cooking a meal. You don’t move from raw meat and potatoes to a finished plate in one step. You have to peal the potatoes and cook them. The meat should be sliced, seasoned and put on the grill. The thing is to start seeing all these pieces instead of one big scary blob.
Try to find the bigger blocks. Find out which to start with. Then break that down in even smaller pieces. And keep breaking it down until you get a piece that is small enough that you say: “No problem, be done in a jiffy”. You still have the same amount of work, but you hack away at it bit by bit.
Just don’t break the entire task down into small pieces all at once, or you will get stuck in planning mode and never start doing anything.
If you do this, you will also find that you have a much greater control over what to do. Instead of the blob, there is a list with checkboxes.
And as a bonus, each small task you finish gives you the satisfaction of being done. You feel that you are moving forward, that you have less and less left to do.
You just turned misery into inspiration. Hey, wasn’t that the problem we started talking about?