2 Easy Steps to defeat procrastination and achieve your goal
Here is the thing:
We love seeing ourselves success; we love doing planning to make our day looks packed and busy. But we never did fulfil our aspirations and we never completed our plan. Why?
Because we can’t get ourselves moving, even though we have that desire in us. There seems to be a kind of resistance that keeps us from taking actions and it frustrates us when we look back. But are we doomed to be like that forever?
The answer is no.
We can defeat procrastination; we can get ourselves moving and achieve more.
But before we defeat our enemy, let’s take a look at what it really is.
What is procrastination?
It is an act of delaying. Instead of completing the more important and urgent task, procrastinator tends to do things that are more easy and fun to do.
Usually, procrastination involves a feeling, anxiety. Facing a big project makes you anxious because you don’t know what to do. What is the first step? And the next step? There are no clear instructions and you find it difficult. You’re confused and lost in the middle of nowhere. So you decide to procrastinate
Perfectionists are often procrastinators because they want to do everything perfectly, but this desire overwhelms them and instead of start doing something, they resist to do anything.
Another phenomenon involved in procrastination is delaying discount. You tend to choose something that can receive an instant result, instead of waiting for a long time, even though it contains a higher value.
For example, when given a choice of receiving $250 dollar today and $280 next week, a person may choose the first one. They’re willing to lose $30 because they can enjoy the $250 instantly.
How to overcome procrastination?
To defeat it, you need a clear and concise plan. It should indicate what the immediate next step is. Make the task easy and the result visible instantly. This is the solution to procrastination.
First, let’s talk about how to make a clear and concise plan. I recommend you to use SMART goal setting system. It is originally used in business and corporations, but it fits for setting personal goals as well.
Most people may use it to set their overall goal. But planning should never only have one big goal. It is too vague and only results in procrastination.
You have to break your goal into a series mini goal. Each mini goal should be set also according to the SMART system.
Remember, you want to make your plan clear. What to do next? When to do it? Where will it lead me? These are the questions you should be able to answer after you make the plan.
What if you have a plan and you’re still procrastinating? It is totally possible and normal. Do you remember what the aspect of procrastination is?
To deal with it, you need an easy and immediate actionable next step, which the result is visible instantly. If a detailed plan is not enough for you, you further break down you mini goal into different actions.
Keep breaking everything down, until it is small enough to motivate you to move.
Here is an example.
- Loss weight
- SMART GOAL: loss 30 pounds within 3 months by doing cardio and fitness
- Start to procrastinate: The goal is lack of an actionable plan
- What is my goal in the first, second and third month?
- How to do it?
- Which type of cardio and fitness should I do?
- Should I get a coach?
- Still procrastinating: lack of immediate step
- What is the first step?
- Is it results instantly visible?
e.g. you may start from getting a coach. That way, you can receive instant advice
If you don’t want to have a coach, you may tell yourself to do 30 sit up in the next X seconds to burn X calories.
These are the basic steps on how to defeat procrastination. The key, again, is to make the goal smaller and smaller, until you have the immediate next step with an instantly visible result.
But don’t forget that your plan isn’t perfect. Therefore, you will need to do reflection constantly and adjust your plan.
Never let yourself give up on anything. If you don’t feel like doing it, it is probably the goal is too far and too big and you’re not clear what you should do next. Don’t forget that we human like instant reward more.
Design a plan that you give you that reward. Step by step, you’re getting closer to your dream and finishing your tasks.
Try this method and share your experience in the comments below. It will be a motivation to me and other readers.