Do you often find yourself caught in the grip of procrastination?
You’re not alone.
One of the biggest things that people come to me asking about as a behavior change expert is procrastination.
We all do it, hate it, and sometimes suffer the consequences of it… If you’re like most people, we all have dreamed of a magical fantasy land where we can completely remove procrastination from our lives.
Unfortunately, procrastination is a natural part of being human.
I have seen countless clients reduce their procrastination simply by accepting that sometimes it’s going to happen and not having so much mental drama about your morality as a person based on how much you procrastinate.
Hi, I’m Dr. Karin Nordin if you’re new around here. I run a behavior change coaching company, Body Brain Alliance, where we teach people how to become their 2.0 selves. With compassion being the first priority.
In this blog, you’ll learn three practical strategies to help you improve your response to procrastination. By understanding and addressing the underlying causes, you can make lasting changes and become more productive.
Let’s dive in!
The Cure For Procrastination:
3 Practical Strategies for Lasting Change
1. Gain Awareness by Naming Your Actions:
One of the first steps to overcoming procrastination is to become aware of the specific tasks and actions that contribute to it. Instead of labeling everything as procrastination, try to identify and name the activities you engage in when avoiding important tasks.
By acknowledging these actions, you can gain valuable insights into your behavior patterns.
For example, if you find yourself cleaning the kitchen instead of working on a crucial report, recognize that you have chosen to prioritize cleaning over your work. Instead of telling yourself you are procrastinating I want you to say to yourself:
“I chose to clean the kitchen instead of working on my report.”
The first step of any kind of change is awareness, and one of the things you can do to reduce your procrastination.
I’ve seen this work for tons of clients in our coaching program. Start noticing and naming the exact tasks, the exact activities, the exact behaviors you are doing, instead of labeling all of them under this umbrella term of procrastination.
This increased awareness allows you to break free from the habit of mindlessly procrastinating and take control of your choices.
2. Address Anxiety, Not Willpower:
Contrary to popular belief, procrastination is not solely a matter of willpower. It often stems from underlying anxiety or fear associated with the task at hand.
Cleaning the kitchen or engaging in seemingly productive activities may temporarily alleviate the anxiety, but they don’t address the root cause.
Instead of avoiding or distracting yourself from the task, make an effort to sit with the anxiety and explore it.
Practice mindfulness by observing your emotions and bodily sensations. By acknowledging and understanding your anxiety, you can begin to manage it effectively.
Consider breaking down the intimidating task into smaller, more manageable steps. This approach reduces the perceived difficulty and helps alleviate anxiety.
As you progressively tackle these smaller tasks, you’ll gain confidence and momentum, making it easier to overcome procrastination.
The cure for procrastination is to emotionally manage yourself around the task effectively. This is something that takes practice, but it is a skill that you can absolutely learn.
Lack of clarity is another factor that contributes to procrastination. When a task feels overwhelming or ambiguous, it becomes easier to put it off.
I recently found myself procrastinating scheduling a dentist appointment for close to 4 months. The reason that I was procrastinating was because I didn’t have the phone number. So every single time I thought about calling my dentist, I would think, “Oh, I don’t have their number.” There was a lack of clarity.
To combat this, strive for clarity by asking yourself the following questions:
- Do I have all the necessary information to complete the task?
- Can I break the task into smaller, more actionable steps?
For instance, if you’ve been procrastinating updating your resume, start by focusing on a specific aspect, such as updating your work history.
By breaking it down, you’ll find it easier to begin and build momentum. Each small accomplishment brings you closer to the final goal.
Procrastination is a common challenge, but it doesn’t have to define your productivity. By employing these practical strategies, you can transform your response to procrastination and make meaningful progress toward your goals.
Remember, awareness, addressing anxiety, and fostering clarity are key to overcoming this hurdle.
If you’re looking for additional support and accountability on your journey to overcome procrastination, consider joining our Change Academy membership.
Inside our community, you’ll find like-minded individuals working toward similar goals, with opportunities for support, guidance, and regular check-ins to keep you on track.
Now it’s your turn.
Join In The Discussion:
Share in the comments below one task you’ve been procrastinating and how you plan to apply these strategies to overcome it.
Together, we can embrace productivity and make lasting changes. And if you found this article helpful, don’t forget to opt into our email community for more valuable content on personal growth and behavior change.
COACHING & MEMBERSHIPS:
BODY BRAIN ALLIANCE: Compassion-First Change Education
🌐 Website: https://bodybrainalliance.com/