Is procrastination holding you back?

Is procrastination holding you back? To quote the late Robin Williams in the film Dead Poets Society:

 “Carpe diem. Seize the day, boys. Make your lives extraordinary.” – John Keating (1989)

But how exactly can we do that when, let’s face it just making the move to realise that we are in fact putting important things off in the first place, was a struggle?

Since starting my own business a couple of years ago I have found a number of useful things that give me the kick I may need, some may call it a ‘call to action’, when I’m being less productive than I need/want to be.

1. Acknowledge the beast that is procrastination.

Firstly, just being aware of what it is you are avoiding/ putting off is a big step in the right direction. Self awareness is a major leap for many, as so often people are happy to amble through life doing what they’ve always done with little thought for the whys and wherefores. Take a minute to consider why you are putting off important tasks, is it a lack of confidence, self belief or are you feeling too comfortable?

2. The benefits of beating the beast.

Next consider what you will achieve if you do indeed “seize the day”. Make a list of the benefits if you need to see it in black and white but beware – list writing is like nectar to the procrastinator! One brief note just to see what you’re missing, that’s all that’s needed, even better just say them out loud as they come into your head.

3. Leave the beast standing and bask in the glory!

Now, this is the hardest, yet simplest part, GET ON WITH IT!

Once you have made that call, written that essay, had that conversation or whatever it is that you need to do but haven’t so far, you will feel the benefits of banishing the uncertainty and feeling the confidence that comes from a difficult task completed and you can begin to work on the next one.

4. Enjoy the glory and don’t look back.

As with most things, once you’ve done it the next time is so much easier. Start to look out for the signs of the beast creeping up on you again, nip it in the bud and keep ahead of it. After all you learnt the old behaviour of the procrastinator in the past, therefore you can continue to learn the more lucrative and positive behaviour of its nemesis, The Doer!

Now, I’ll just have another cuppa before I think about making that call…..