7 Simple Steps to Stop Procrastinating

Are you a victim of laziness, a root cause of procrastination? Do you often suffer because of what you initially considered as easy has turned difficult with the loss of time, and what appeared hard, due to further delay, has become impossible now? You may draw comfort from the fact that you are in the company of many that are affected by procrastination. But you must realise that you will experience true comfort, if you get rid of your laziness by shaking yourself up into action. Like many others, you can indeed stop procrastinating and start meeting deadlines, by following a few simple steps that teach you effective time management.
  1. Plan your daily must-do activities. Draw up a to-do list; preferably, write it down on paper; or, use a computer if you prefer.
  1. Prioritise the activities, the more important ones taking precedence over the less important. If there are urgent things to do, but not important enough to be worried about if not done, put them below the important ones. The idea is based on the established principle that 80% of rewards accrue from 20% of effort directed towards accomplishing important work.
  1. Estimate the time required for each of the listed activities after analyzing their complexity. Avoid underestimation, as you may not have enough time to do well a particular of piece of work. Similarly, avoid overestimation, for that may leave some activities without enough time. A realistic budgeting of time is a must. Time allocation is a skill that is acquired with experience. So keep reviewing and revising your time schedule as you progress.
  1. Organise your life. That will help you avoid wasting your precious time and leave more time for the actual work. Remember indiscipline causes confusion, even chaos, in life. It eats into your time. Avoid sloppiness. For instance, leave your personal belongings of daily use, like your glasses, your clothing, your computer etc., in the same place. If you do, you won’t need to spend time looking for them all over the place. Apply the principle of doing work first and then taking time for pleasure and relaxation. Reverse the order only at the pain of falling prey to procrastination. You can get time for rest and relaxation if you are efficient in doing your assigned work.
  1. Start working bit by bit. You may see a mountain at first, but mountains can be moved, especially if you begin by moving just a small stone from it. You know you cannot move the entire mountain all at once. Do not be overwhelmed by the immensity of the task before you. That will put you off. And you will put off the task for another day, which will never come. Just begin by taking one small step and you will invariably reach your destination.
  1. Put first things first early in the day. Remember procrastination grows into a habit by the minute. Begin your day by launching yourself head first into the most important job waiting to be done.
  1. Learn to cope with anxiety, depression, stress and other similar conditions of the mind related to your problems in life. Keep yourself fit, not just physically but mentally as well. Learn and practice suitable mental relaxation techniques such as meditation.
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