Do you also feel bad not finishing tasks after passing hours and hours on unproductive activities?
And, after regretting a lot you often ask yourself, “How to stop procrastinating?“
After passing one more meaningless day now you’ve decided not to waste any more time on unproductive things.
You decided not to open social media, not to participate in gossip, and stay away from every temptation which drives you off from your main work.
On the very next day;
You again wake up late, start with your phone and social media again, could not stop yourself hanging out with your peers discussing meaningless things, and the same thing happened.
And, you wasted one more day.
Don’t beat yourself up. You are not alone!
I personally feel the same sometimes.
And, I am going to share exact same methods with you which helped me to stop procrastinating.
Let’s dive in!
What is Procrastination
You already know what to do to get desired results and accomplish your goal.
Still, your mind drives you toward easy and unnecessary things to get temporary pleasure. Because your brain is inclined to have fun doing easy things.
It asks you to do things that don’t take much effort without caring about the outcome.
You do the things you want to do without differentiating what is important and what is not. You are in the habit of postponing your decisions and not taking action.
You just put things off sometimes knowingly, and sometimes unknowingly. And sometimes, you have other less important tasks to do that look easier than your main task.
Even you feel guilty after postponing your today’s work till the next time and you want to stop procrastinating. You fail to do that because you want to enjoy sleep, food get-together, or a movie.
Why Do We procrastinate
There can be many reasons for postponing things, but here are some major reasons that push you toward procrastination.
- You are not clear about you purpose and don’t know where to start
- You are afraid of failing.
- Your goals are big or too vague that you are overwhelmed where to start.
- You know what to do but don’t have proper action plan.
- You’re surrounded by too many distractions like TV, social media, online gaming, and purpose-free people.
- You can’t prioritise things as per their importance
- You arn’t able to measure long term results of your work and you are disconnected from your future-self.
- You want to be perfect before start doing something
There can be many others, but I have covered the main reasons of procrastination here.
You’re almost tired of trying every possible solution without success, right?
Let me explain why it happens?
The biggest reason for procrastinating is enjoying easy things which give us instant gratification.
You can’t realise when your brain is on autopilot mode and attracting you towards unnecessary things. Like automatically touching your phone again and again and clicking on a social medial icon.
It gets so indulged in these funny and easy to do things that it often surprises you when you see yourself wasting hours and hours of time.
Your brain has become so lazy and doesn’t want to do things that require some energy and focus.
You might have been attracted to scrolling over social media, reading and replying to emails, binge-watching web series, playing online games for hours and hours, and so on.
Later, you feel bad about yourself when you see you have wasted the whole day without doing something valuable.
And, now you’re thinking, “how to stop procrastinating?”
How To Stop Procrastinating
After trying different things, reading many blogs and books, discussing with experts, I learnt to beat time-killing habits.
And, I am sure, if you follow these tactics you can stop procrastinating too.
1. Take Action
Start doing the work whether you feel like doing it or not. Change the habit of avoiding work.
Think about your most important task that can make difference in your productivity and make your day count.
Force yourself to work and start doing it.
You will start feeling good doing in the middle of work once you start it.
Most of the time just taking action breaks the pattern of our habit of avoiding work.
Just start doing it to stop procrastinating.
2. Put off The Distractions
We often get distracted by the things surrounding us. It is important to identify those distractions and stay away from them. Here are a couple of things you can do.
- Keep tracking yourself what you are doing, whether it is important or not. Don’t get trapped by chatter of mind, just say, “STOP” to the flood of thoughts. Measure your throughts and stop thinking what is not important.
- Turn off the notification of all the social media apps on your phone and computer. Use social media when you need it not when social media apps send you a notification.
- Switch off the internet if it is not required to perform your important work.
- Keep your workplace tidy and well arranged with all the required things. Remove unnecessary clutter from your desk.
- Turn off the background noise of your computer and if you work in a noisy place use earplugs to avoid distraction.
3. Divide Your Big Tasks Into Small Parts
If you are working on a project that is big enough, divide it into small sessions.
Don’t get overwhelmed thinking about finishing the whole project at once.
Decide where to start first and what to do next. Then start doing it session by session. And don’t force yourself to work when you need a break.
4. Keep Motivating Yourself
Change your words for yourself.
Don’t call yourself a procrastinator.
Just understand you have a bad habit of delaying your work and you will change it by doing the work.
When you feel like not doing your work, just repeat with yourself; “start doing it, start doing it.”
At the same time feel the pain or guilt of postponing the task for the next time.
Just start doing work and visualize as soon as you finish it you will compensate yourself with something pleasant.
5. Make Notes
Don’t get stressed about doing too many things at the same time. Write down everything you need to do and create your to-do list.
Then select which task is important and which is less important for real-time.
Remove the extra burden and start focusing on your most important task first.
Prioritising on things will make you a productive and result-driven person.
6. Take Actual Breaks But stop Procrastinating
When you need a break take an actual break to escape mental fatigue.
But, don’t involve in social media or gossiping.
This will switch your focus from your important work and you’ll require more energy and time to regain your focus.
Instead, go for a small walk, see outside and try to enjoy nature and feel relaxed.
7. Develop The Habit Of Saying No
If possible move to a quiet place to work where no one will disturb you.
Avoid phone calls while working which needs your sharp focus.
Or when you are in the office start saying NO to your co-workers when they ask you to discuss an unnecessary topic.
Try to take breaks alone or with like-minded people.
Start saying no to your friends when you have important work to do.
8. Stop Reacting On Everything Around You
Don’t involve in irrelevant things around you.
Stop caring for everything around you.
Ask yourself why do you care for a certain thing in someone else’s life or around the world when you have your unfinished work to do.
Stop taking everything personally.
Don’t feel offensive for certain feedbacks; if you think it is right, take it otherwise leave it.
Don’t ponder on every situation too much and stop procrastinating.
Putting too much clutter in your brain will drain your energy and when you need to work, you’ll find yourself exhausted. And you’ll start procrastinating for another coffee break or nap.
9. Use the Internet Wisely
If you are learning online, be specific to get the relevant knowledge that you can implement in your work or life.
Don’t get trapped by suggestions or recommendations by certain applications or web browsers.
I bet you will not able to learn many topics in a small frequency of time. So just watch one video, a relevant video which is gonna help you in real-time or which is related to the subject.
Else, you will start suffering digital dementia and fatigue.
10. Analyze The Actual Role Of Social Media
If you are in the social media business then only use it.
Don’t just post your pictures or thoughts and wait for another notification that how people react to it.
To see that you will get distracted by too many videos or images and start killing your time.
That’s how you can stop procrastinating and start doing.
Please let me know in the comment box below which helped you most.
“In the end, I would say just take action whether you feel it or not. If it is important enough, give it some importance, go get up, start doing it.”