13 Tips to Keep Procrastination at Bay


To start with, ask yourself, “Why do I procrastinate?”

Figure out what holds you from hitting the ice. You might be scared of walking out of your comfort zone or reaching out to new people, or afraid of being judged, or not falling upto the mark. Anything and everything can make you fall in the procrastinator’s trap.

In addition to the stress and guilt that comes with procrastination, lower productivity levels and impaired well being emerge by default.

Stop telling yourself you need the right amount of time, space, and related factors to jumpstart. Do not wait for the magic ingredients to appear. Plan and act.

If you struggle with putting things off, try any of these tips to set you back on track.#1. Set reminders.
Use post-it notes, reminders, calendar alarms, anything that keeps knocking your brain about your impending task.

#2. Let people know about your plan. It will add pressure.
Make your intentions public.

Being open about your plans would not only add pressure to get the work done, in fact, it will also serve as a motivating factor to keep up your repute.

#3. Get a partner who reminds and inspires you.
Seek a buddy for yourself. The one who can help you in achieving your goals. He can be your coach, who can help you stay on track or a friend who could guide you or help you out with bits of your task. Even a promise made to someone would keep you going to avoid turning back on your word.

#4. Keep a buffer while setting deadlines.
Set S.M.A.R.T (specific, measurable, achievable, relevant and time-bound) goals. Make sure the targets are feasible. Make sure to bake in some extra time. Allow margins to balance delays if any. Look for ways to make it easier on yourself. If you are too hard on yourself, chances are you will ultimately prefer saving the job for later.

#5. Assign top priority to things you avoid in your to-do list.
Create your to-do list.

To do lists are constant reminders to organise yourselves. Plan your calendar. Categorize as per daily, weekly, and monthly deadlines. Make sure you prioritise tasks that you have been delaying and not necessarily the ones you will end up doing anyway.

#6. Split tasks into micro-tasks.
What leads to procrastination is usually the overwhelming feeling to do a particular thing. Break up the entire task and chunk it down into manageable little parts. Then deal with one section at a time. Split it further into pieces until you find it extremely simple to proceed.

#7. Set timer.
To start is the most significant step. Look at your list and spot a task you have been delaying for quite some time. Start it. Set your timer and make sure you program your mind to finish it off in the allotted slot. Trust me, even if you fail to finish off in a set time frame, at least you would succeed in breaking the ice and surprisingly, a significant portion of the task would be sorted out.

#8. Tune out distractions.
Technology makes the procrastinator’s dream come true. Bid goodbye to notifications, Facebook, Twitter or anything that disturbs your flow of work. Prioritize your stuff. Save everything else for later.

#9. Do not aim to be a perfectionist.
Quit being a perfectionist if that is what is keeping you put things on hold. Instead, strive for excellence. Focus on improving yourself. Do not target to be master if you are still in the learning phase.

#10. Find the underlying element.
Try to figure out what makes you procrastinate. Harness your fear. Stop catastrophizing. The sooner you confront the cause of the problem, the quicker you’ll be able to work on stopping it.

#11. Optimize your environment.
Stay motivated. Have a change of surroundings if it’s getting dull. Seek a place where you won’t be distracted.

#12. Take breaks and stay motivated.
Do not burn out yourself. Divide your day according to your potential. A cup of coffee or a ten minutes break can do wonders to recharge and rejuvenate you.

#13. Reward yourself.
Strike a deal with yourself. Bargain to get the best offer. Reward yourself religiously with something you have been looking forward to after completing your task.
NOTE: All the above points have been mentioned from the writer’s personal experiences.

Please share your opinion about these hacks in the comment section below.

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13 Tips to Keep Procrastination at Bay

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