My goal for today was to write this article as soon as I woke up. But I had my tea and even decided to make a toast for myself which is unusual as I am really not into breakfast. I also decided to call my mother and when she did not pick up, I waited for her to call back. In the meantime, I decided to put a load of laundry into my washer. If you thought I was done, no I also decided to fold some clothes that were already dry. I am not a procrastinator but I wonder what would explain my behavior pattern for today. Yes, you guessed it right. We all have a bit of procrastination in us, the harmless kind as in my case because I did achieve my goal of writing this article by morning. But there are procrastinators who do not get to their task – the chronic procrastinators. Here are a few tips to help the chronic procrastinators:
- Just do it: The waiting and trying to create motivation through your will power does not work for these procrastinators. The longer you wait, the longer your “To Do” list gets and then you may reach the panic mode. Instead, as soon as you feel like there is something that needs to be done, count backward from 3 to 1 and then just do it. If it is something that cannot be done immediately, give it no less than 12 hours. If it is a much larger task, commit to doing it the same weekend.
- Out of sight, out of mind: If you have a task that needs to be done, place objects relating to this task, somewhere that can be seen. If you want to start reading before bedtime, place the book you want to read next to your bed and your phone out of your room. This will help remove the distractions through your phone and trust me you may not want to walk all the way to the other room to get your phone.
- Reward yourself: It is a no brainer that we all like rewards and presents. Procrastinators are barraged by guilt most of the time for putting things aside. Some walk around with baggage of guilt for piling tasks upon tasks. Instead, apply some reverse psychology by rewarding yourselves for the completion of a task. This will motivate you to do it again in a timely fashion. Take the help of your loved ones and ask them to reward you for your efforts.
- Live in the now: Life is unpredictable and we must learn to live in the present; not the future nor the past. Procrastinators have a way of dragging everything to the future. Once I do this, once I do that, or once my children go to college….and the list goes on. No. There is no guarantee on what our lives are going to be like in the future. I say, we grab on to our health and the resources that we have today and make the best use of it. There is also no guarantee that in the future, we will be bestowed with an abundance of time. As the saying goes, time and tide wait for no man, we must not wait for a golden opportunity to come knocking at our door.
- Change your language: Be mindful of how you talk about yourself to others. If you love to put everything in its place, say “I am organized”. If you like swimming and swim occasionally, say “I am a swimmer”. Viewing ourselves as these people who we claim to be, affect our behavior and brings affirmations to ourselves and others.
- Appreciate and embrace yourself: Appreciate your efforts by writing a gratitude journal and measuring how far you have come. It is not easy for some to commend and pat their own back. Do it anyway. Look back at your achievements and applaud. In fact, look at the mirror, smile at yourself and applaud, go on…no one is watching.
Research says it is important to keep any behavioral change for at least 6 months to not revert back to old habits. If you feel you have some behavioral patterns that you would like to make some significant and substantial change, please get help and live a life that is flourishing and satisfactory. You can contact me for a complimentary intro session and find out what we can achieve together. Hamna Siddique MS, CCII, CLC is a coach specializing in life, career, business, and leadership coaching. Website: www.hamnasiddique.com, Email: email@example.com. ©2020 Goldbridge Coaching LLC | All Rights Reserved |