Thoughtful Thursday: How To Stop Procrastinating
We all have reasons why we put off traveling the world. Perhaps you don’t have a passport and you’ve been meaning to get one, but you haven’t gotten around to it. You’ve been wanting to book that Contiki trip but you’re procrastinating because you keep waiting to see if your friends are on board. But really – what are you waiting for?
Take a cue from Contiki – it’s time to make every minute count and you won’t be able to do that if you’re procrastinating. Take charge and take advice from Christine Hassler in this week’s Thoughtful Thursday post!
Guest Blog Post by Christine Hassler
Procrastination. Even though we know it is the thief of productivity we all do it. And we temporarily enjoy it because we usually fill it with something frivolous that feels rather indulgent. Yet at the same time we feel guilty because we know something is hanging over our head.
Procrastination is also the thief of passion. Do you find yourself accountable to other people yet you delay doing the things that would support your personal and professional dreams? It’s time to be courageous and move through any fear and resistance. You deserve your dreams AND they are not going to just appear without taking steps toward them.
Stop letting procrastination rob you of your productivity and passion!! Here is a seven-step process to help you “just do it” (in the video I share in a lot more detail, steps are outlines below):
- Identify the COST and PAYOFF of procrastination. Costs are easy to identify and may include things like increased stress by having less time to get things done, feeling guilty, indulging in unhealthy distraction patterns like eating, gossiping, or mindless facebooking (yes, I’ve made that a verb). Next, you may think there is no payoff to procrastination but there is! You get to temporarily experience a sense of rebellion and freedom from doing the thing you don’t feel like doing. It’s the payoff that makes procrastination so intoxicating.
- Answer, “What would be different if I got this task done?” List out all the positive benefits from completing what you’re putting off. Imagine it done. How would you feel? What would you have space for? How could you utilize all the new energy you freed up from completing an incomplete cycle of action.
- Schedule a time and commit. Leverage the energy you are feeling from step 2 to pull you into committing to getting it done. It is WAY easier to commit to something when you are in enthusiastic energy! Pick a time or ongoing window of time to JUST DO IT. And hold yourself accountable to showing up for yourself just like you’d show up for a doctors appointment or a hot date.
- Establish disciplines because discipline creates habits. You don’t procrastinate brushing your teeth because it’s become a habit. Usually we put things off because we haven’t formed a habit. For instance, I used to procrastinate writing but now that I’ve blogged at least once a week for 7 years, it’s a habit. Commit to showing up on a regular basis and doing the things you are delaying.
- Eliminate all distractions. Forget about minimizing them! TURN OFF your internet, email, social media, phone, TV, work in a new space (like a library) where food and tempting distractions are minimal. You will be amazed at how productive and focused you can be when you eliminate distractions.
- Shift your state. Your state is your physiological, mental and emotional pulse. If your energy is low, your thoughts are along the lines of “I don’t wanna” and you feel anxious, frustrated, or apathetic, guess how productive you are going to be? Not very! Shift your state to one of high energy, positive self-talk, and enthusiasm by imagining yourself 15 minutes AFTER the successful completion of your tasks. See it, feel it. Experience the relief, accomplishment and excitement you will feel. Get into that energy and then begin your task.
- Celebrate! This is an important step because you want your true payoff to come from the completion of the task and not from procrastination. Acknowledge yourself. Reward yourself with the things you may have been using to procrastinate!
Okay now it’s time to stop surfing the internet and get productive and passion. Use these seven steps anytime you find yourself procrastinating. Remember, delaying doing things that you don’t like doing OR would love to do but put last robs you of productivity and passion.
So if you want to procrastinate just a tiny bit longer and have a great laugh, check out Ellen’s take on procrastination here.
p.s. Those of you who live in LA: I’m teaching a brand new special goal-setting / manifestation workshop this TUES Jan 22nd open to women AND men. Find out more and register HERE.
p.p.s. I’m headed to AUSTRALIA!!! Join me for a special workshop in Sydney on Feb 2nd. Go here to learn more.
About the Author:
Christine Hassler left her successful job as a Hollywood agent at 25 to pursue a life she could be passionate about…but it did not come easily. After being inspired by her own unexpected challenges and experiences, she realized her journey was indeed her destination. In 2005, she wrote the first guide book written exclusively for young women, entitled 20 Something 20 Everything. Christine’s second book, The 20 Something Manifesto written for men and women stems from her experience coaching twenty-something’s.
Today, she supports individuals as a Life Coach helping clients discover the answers to the questions: “Who Am I, What do I want, and How do I get it?” As a professional speaker, Christine leads seminars and workshops to audiences around the country. She has spoken to over 10,000 college students as well as to conferences and corporations about generational diversity. Christine has appeared as an expert on The Today Show, CNN, ABC, CBS, FOX, E!, Style and PBS, as well as various local television and radio shows, speaking about life issues and “Expectation Hangovers®” – a phenomenon she identified and trademarked.
Christine is the spokesperson for Zync from American Express and the key resource for their Quarterlife Program which empowers young people to take control of their finances. She also created a life balance curriculum for the Leadership Institute and is a member of Northwestern University’s Council of 100. www.christinehassler.com