We often say to ourselves “I’m pretty sure I can finish the paper it if I start after two hours” sometimes the “two hours” turn into the next day then the day after that. And thus we open the gates to procrastinating and delaying work.
This is not just about starting work. We sometimes tend to delay finishing our work or even leave it midway. Minutes turn to hours and hours turn to days. Suddenly we realize the deadline is in a few hours. Most of us have done it at some point in our lives. Whether it be in cases of chores, homework, assignment or studying.
Sometimes it can become a cool story that you can tell it to your friends like “I pulled off an all-nighter and finished 5 days’ worth of work in one night” but that’s not always the case and it also should not be appreciated to do work at the last moment. In reality, it is cooler if you are punctual and on time.
Now, what is procrastination?
The word means “delay or postpone action” but there is more to it. Procrastinating also means failing to convince yourself to do something you know you have to do. Your mind drifts away instead of focusing on what you have to do. You start to get lost thinking about irrelevant stuff instead of figuring how to perform and plan out important work. It is not only that you think about futile work it is also that you hesitate and refuse to even begin your work.
Procrastinating at points can jam your thought process and make you forget what’s actually at hand.
Now when a person with procrastinating is drifting away in his/her thought balloons it’s not always happy thoughts.
People can procrastinate when depressed too. Sometimes thoughts about current life problems and crises can suddenly creep in and make you distracted. It’s not safe to assume a person suffering from procrastination is doing it for his/her amusement. That is not always the case but it should not be completely accepted as well.
You have to fight it. Procrastinating for long periods only makes things worse. It can deeply affect your social life, health, diet, and sleep.
How to stop leaving your work for tomorrow?
Well, that is no easy task to complete. Even without procrastinating we may tend to delay the inevitable sometimes. Sometimes we want to take things a bit easier. So always getting doing your job done on time is not the most important thing. We are humans after all and sometimes it is impossible to complete the work on time due to myriads of time.
What we want to address here is how you can stop delaying your work even when you know and are capable of finishing your work way before the deadline.
You don’t have to dive head straight in your workload and achieve all your goals right away but what you can do is take baby steps
Make a routine
Now, this may sound pretty basic and silly but hear me out. Making a plan and routine is the first step to accomplishing any of your goals. It helps you become organized, efficient and ready. This is also a part of getting your work done. This is the pre-phase of accomplishing your goals. Figure out what your work requires, note down when the deadline is and note down what you have to do each day to get it done.
Divide and conquer
On to the next part, now that we have a routine. Lay it all out. Divide and decide your work for each day. Leave a med sized portion of your work for each day. If you leave small portions then you may think that I can do it another day since it’s only a little work and if it’s a large portion then you might hesitate to even begin.
Mark your time frame with visual cues
Not just in your note pad or mobile notes because they are pretty easy to miss out. You have to set reminders that will get a hold of your attention and remind you what you have to do. Use sticky notes and stamp them in your room, table, PC or laptop and fridge. Any place that you use daily. Markdown your calendars and even set alarms, anything to get your attention and remind you.
Take some time to look at yourself. You are your best motivator for yourself. Learn to believe in yourself and reflect upon your work. A little me-time is good. Celebrate if you have completed the task but also admit your mistakes and flaws.
Don’t go for exterior motivation
Don’t just motivate yourself by saying everyone is doing it hence I can do it too. By forcefully doing things you might only get sad. Now yes, of course, you are not going to find joy or fun in everything you do. But to perform well you have to start with things that make you motivated and uplifted for the work. Once you find your zone then you can focus on other things.
Now, remember this is where a procrastinator’s mind plays tricks. It tricks you into thinking that you need more rest to be ready or you need to watch one more episode of a series or finish a match. It makes you think by doing these you will feel happy and ready for work.
Don’t fall for it. Gather your motivation but don’t overdo it. Instead,
Go for it and start
The beginning is the hardest part. You have to channel all your energy and motivation and start. That is the biggest leap you will need. Once you start something, things will automatically begin to place itself
Being punctual is no easy task but it sure is worth it. Once you understand and learn the benefits of it you will never want to go back!