Nope, I’m not joking. You know that time when you put off a task for so long, it starts to affect your work, it messes up your whole schedule, and sometimes even manages to drag you down physically and emotionally.
Yes, you probably know what I’m talking about, and now you’re asking, how this can possibly be good for you. Well, like anything that doesn’t kill you, it makes you stronger. Here, I'll show you how.
WHAT IS PROCRASTINATION
According to Google, procrastination is the avoidance of doing a task which needs to be accomplished.
And the question to that is ‘Why?’
Why do you avoid the task? Why is it so hard to stand up (or sit down) and do it?
Procrastination is not the disease, it's a symptom of an yet unaddressed issue.
So if you are procrastinating, instead of beating yourself up for it, you can have a little chat with your Soul, and see what's going on there.
MY TOP 5 REASONS FOR PROCRASTINATION
1. Day off? What’s that?
If you are a one woman show and work at all possible hours with breaks few and far between (guilty!), procrastination is the very first sign that you need a longer break.
When all I want to do it binge watch Dark Matter, instead of creating things, I know I overstretched myself, and I need a day (or a week) away from the computer.
If you’ve been procrastinating lately, try taking a longer break from your work and having fun doing something completely else. Fun can do miracles, you know ;)
2. I don’t have a plan
As it is often the case with paperwork, cleaning up your studio, or any other chore you have on your loooong, long to-do list, you know you have to do it, sometimes you even reeeeally want to do it, but it’s to huge of a task, and you “don’t have the time for it”. Sounds familiar?
What you really need is a good old plan.
And a good plan includes step by step instructions, milestones and rewards when every milestone is reached. Oh, yes, hellooo dates dipped in dark chocolate! :)
So go ahead, break that chore down to tiny chunks you can do in one sitting, and start with number one. Do them all at once, do them once a day - that’s your call. You have an action plan now, not just a vague “I need to replant all my succulents” task.
Planner girl tip: I use a bullet journal and dedicate a page per chore, where I outline steps, milestones and what I’ll get when everything’s done. I make it super pretty with washi tape, stamps and little doodles. By writing it all down, you don’t have to invent the whole process again, if a similar task pops up in your to-do list ever again.
3. I lack the right motivation
If you ever started a blog, you know the feeling of wanting to start now, but never acting upon it. How long did it take you to actually publish your first post?
And yes, you are all excited to start and that means you were motivated, right?
Well yes and no.
Yes you were motivated — you will soon have a beautiful blog and share your awesomeness with the world. But do you really know why you want to do that?
The best possible motivation comes from the positive impact you have the potential to make, not just from the desire to show off your skills and talents.
4. I lack self-discipline
If you want to work out more, or if you want to practice your calligraphy more often, the best way to go about it is to create a habit of it. Without the habit you need to think about it, and if you have to do that, you open a big window for decision making. And then you have 50:50 chance of choosing not to do it.
We humans always take the path of least resistance, given the chance.
free printable habit tracker to help you along the way:
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5. I am fighting the wrong battle
Solopreneurship proves to be rather impossible if you try to do it all alone. Yes, solo means solo, and you don’t need to employ people if you want to remain a one woman show, but you don’t have to reinvent the wheel either.
Know your strengths and find help where you need it.
You can hire an accountant, photographer, personal assistant and such, or if you are not ready to do that just yet, you can find suitable apps, stock photos, and project management tools to help you figure things out.
Don’t expect to be good in everything. Pick your battles and make sure you don’t spread yourself too thin.
SO, WHY IS PROCRASTINATION GOOD FOR ME AGAIN?
Procrastination tells you that something is wrong. It’s an early sign something needs to be adjusted, changed, rethought, simplified, planned, explained, etc.
It is good for you, because it urges you to think and feel. It breaks your routine and pushes you towards more mindful life.
So yes, procrastination is the alarm that goes of, when you lose awareness, get too busy, and start to numb down your magical Soul.
5 THINGS TO DO WHEN YOU ARE PROCRASTINATING
So, if you’re not doing what you’re supposed to be doing, you might as well sit down for a little bit of Soul searching with a nice cup of tea.
Get some rest
First thing first, get some sleep. Then, give yourself the time to enjoy life, do the all the funny-awesome-silly stuff you love, whatever they are — your day off, your rules. Denying yourself what you love won’t make you more productive.
Make a plan
Plan the out the task that gives you trouble, but don’t pack your planner full - it looks scary and you won’t do all the tasks anyway. Instead have two-three business tasks per day and focus fully on them.
Examine your motivation
Why do you have to do this task? Write down your reasoning and stick it up somewhere you can see it.
Start a new habit
Be gentle with yourself, give yourself the time to enjoy the process and be mindful of the awesome things you are learning every day. The Power of Habit by Charles Duhigg is a very awesome book about making and breaking habits, give it a try.
If you don’t know how to do something, you might put it off forever. Instead here are three ideas how to get help:
- Hire a professional to do if for you.
- Look for an workaround — search for tools or resources that will make it easier for you to find your way through.
- Learn the skill — find a course, either locally or online, and learn how to do what you want to do the right way. As with habit building, take the time to enjoy it and make the most of it.
WHY DO YOU PROCRASTINATE?
And what do you do when you just cannot make yourself do what you have to do? How do you get back on track? Let me know in the comments below, I'd love to know ;)
Stay mindful and happy!