What have you been meaning to do this year but keep putting off?
Are you overdue for a visit to the doctor?
Is there an old friend or client you’ve been meaning to take to lunch?
Do you have a personal or professional goal that’s important to you but you’re not working on it right now?
Why wait? Do it now! Sometimes later becomes too late!!!
Unfortunately, there is no cure for procrastination. The moment you choose to do one thing, you have put off doing something else. Multi-tasking is an illusion. However, when it comes to your most important goals, you can turn “do it later” into “do it now” by adding this one habit to your daily routine.
Take positive action when you don’t feel like it.
To accomplish anything worthwhile, you have to base your actions on your commitments…not your feelings. The more you can get yourself to act when you’re not motivated, the happier, healthier and more productive you’ll be. Remember, professionals don’t wait for inspiration. They do what needs to be done regardless of how they’re feeling in the moment.
When you catch yourself saying “I’ll do IT later” because you don’t feel like doing it now, stop and think about your definition of IT. Instead of ruminating on everything that needs to be done, just focus on one thing you can do now. Much of the work you want or need to do can seem overwhelming. As a result, your mind will trick you into believing you’ll have more energy, be more prepared or be in a better mood to run the race sometime in the future. Even though you know that strategy won’t help you cross the finish line, it does make you feel better…temporarily.
It’s amazing how just getting yourself to take one small step will influence you to take another one; and before long, you’ve made meaningful progress on an important project.
As a leader, it’s also important to know that procrastination is a voluntary delay of an action we know needs to be done, and one we also believe will benefit us when it’s completed. People who can’t get themselves to do something they know is in their best interest become very self-critical and lose confidence in their ability to reach worthy goals. What they need more than a cheerleader telling them they can win the race is a coach who helps them take the next step.
If you’re ready to be a positive action role model for your co-workers, clients and family, do something today that you’ve been putting off. Remember the quote by Emerson…”What you do speaks so loudly I can’t hear what you say!”
Let’s Get Better. Together! Bill Durkin