We all procrastinate. And, we all looking for ways to overcome procrastination.
Rather than continually beating yourself up and feeling a sense of shame about your procrastination, look instead at procrastination as a source of your next productive breakthrough
Do you sometime feel stuck? You can’t stay engaged, focused and excited about what you’re working on?
You try to move forward but you can’t seem to motivate yourself to take action on your biggest projects.
Procrastination sets in and before you know it, the day has finished and nothing has been achieved.
Does this sound familiar?
This happens to most people at some point.
Having worked with many business owners I’ve found the quickest method to stop procrastination is to go under the “mindset bonnet”, so to speak.
To get people to gain clarity on the roadblocks that are stopping them moving forward.
There are many reasons that procrastination rears its head.
In this brief guide I’ll share 4 action steps you can take to get unstuck and overcome procrastination.
1. Stop chasing an impossible ideal
When we set goals for ourselves we build a picture of what our ideal future looks like.
Once we have this vision, we set goals and action steps to help get us there.
Two things then come into play.
We set up ideals that are often so far ahead from where we are right now that the ideal feel impossible to achieve.
This future ideal has been set up without really thinking about them, without really being engaged and inspired by getting to this ideal.
There is no preparation.
No thinking about what might need to happen to reach this ideal.
We then get stuck, start procrastinating and sometimes avoid even trying.
Our ideal gets further and further away from where we currently are.
Let me explain.
If you are always measuring your progress against achieving your ideal, you’ll never be happy.
Your ideal will always be in front of you – which will cause you to stop and not make any forward progress.
This can be rectified by a simple mindset shift.
Start measuring your progress from the present day back to where you started from rather than measuring forward.
When you measure backwards you’ll see how much progress you’ve actually made.
This process can help overcome procrastination and can increase your confidence and your capability to take the action steps required to reach for bigger and bigger goals.
Rather than being self-critical, you’ll feel happier with the progress you’ve made.
2. Stop thinking that nothing is ever good enough
Perfectionism and having a comparison mindset can create instant paralysis and procrastination.
When you spend a lot of time across social media you are bound to be inundated with stories and images of how peers and friends are ‘succeeding’
They may have more friends, connections, money, followers than you.
Peers, influencers or friends can be reporting making more money or doing this or that, which can naturally cause you to compare their circumstances with yours. You start procrastinating.
You get down on yourself and question why you aren’t where you want to be.
The thing is, you have no idea what’s happening ‘back stage’.
You don’t know about their life or their business.
To help you overcome procrastination, don’t compare yourself to others. Get clear on your goals and stay on your own path.
Celebrate every success you have and step back and express gratitude for what you’ve achieved every day.
3. Overcome procrastination with specific measurable goals
When you don’t have clarity around your future direction and have specific, measurable goals to work towards you are far more liable to procrastinate.
You won’t know what to do next or what path to follow.
This can leave you feeling confused, stuck and powerless which creates procrastination.
To overcome procrastination, set out ambitious but realistic goals that include your objectives and some concrete ways to reach them.
Have a longer term vision but include shorter term 90 day goals.
This gives you clarity and something specific to work towards.
You become more focused and confident which increases your capability.
When you have no clear destination, don’t be surprised if you can’t seem to build any momentum.
To get started, try setting 5 specific, measurable goals you want to achieve in the next 90 Days.
4. Identify your bigger purpose
Motivation and confidence matter.
When you’re not clear why you’re doing what you’re doing – what your purpose is, then it can be very easy to get stuck, and start procrastinating.
Emotional engagement will motivate you to take the next step towards achieving your goals.
When you get stuck, step back and ask yourself, “Why do I want to reach this goal again?” and write down your reasons.
Whatever your key motivations, when you find yourself dragging your feet, stop to remind yourself why you wanted to achieve a specific goal in the first place.
Reconnecting with your bigger purpose will always help you overcome procrastination as you will be intellectually engaged and emotionally invested.
Can you identify one thing that causes you to procrastinate?
About The Author
Mark Pettit is a 1:1 business coach and founder of Lucemi Consulting. He loves to work with entrepreneurs to help them increase time freedom and multiply business growth. You can connect with him on Linkedin and Facebook.
How to Get Sh*t Done will teach you how to zero in on the three areas of your life where you want to excel, and then it will show you how to off-load, outsource, or just stop giving a damn about the rest.