Ready to stop procrastinating and make some progress? Try one of these seven simple hacks to motivate yourself into action. Give them each a try over the coming days and weeks and find the ones that make the biggest difference for you. Whenever you find yourself procrastinating, come back to this list and employ one or several of these hacks. Your productivity will soar.
Tip #1: Pick Something Small
One of the big reasons we procrastinate is because something feels overwhelming. There’s too much to do, so we choose to forget about it for a little while. It’s a coping mechanism, just not a very productive one. Instead, pick one thing, something small that you can do right now to move you in the right direction. This creates momentum and forces you to take action. A great example of this is the book The Chaos Cure by Marla Cilley. She encourages you to clean your home and rain in the chaos in small chunks. I got it for Christmas and it's already made a difference. That book also employs the next tip. . .
Tip #2: Set A Time And Go
Another hack that works like a charm is to set a timer. Your phone has one built-in, as do most smartwatches. Set it for fifteen or twenty minutes and chip away at a task you’ve been procrastinating on. This works just as well for decluttering your closet as it does for filling out those dreaded expense reports. If twenty minutes feels too long, start with ten. Again, the goal is to start and do something.
Tip #3: Bribe Yourself
There’s nothing wrong with bribing yourself if that’s what motivates you. Work on a home improvement project for an hour and then watch an episode of your favorite show. Or promise yourself a new gadget or pair of shoes when you finish painting the living room. Come up with something that motivates you and go for it. Remind yourself of the prize at the end of the project whenever you’re tempted to put things off for another day.
Tip #4: Find An Accountability Partner
Find someone else who’s either trying to be more productive or beat procrastination themselves. Check in with each other daily. Share what you want to accomplish and what you will get done today. Knowing you have to report to someone else makes you take action. It’s also motivating to see the other person do the same. Try it. Besides, misery loves company.
Tip #5: Measure Your Progress
When you’re working on something long-term like losing those last thirty pounds, for example, it can be tempting to procrastinate because it doesn’t seem like you’re making much progress. Instead, prove to yourself that you are getting closer and closer by tracking or measuring it. Make a chart, use a spreadsheet, keep a journal. Find a way to measure your progress and use it to motivate yourself to keep going.
There’s a reason you’ve decided to do that thing you keep putting off. Think about why you want to get it done.
Tip #6: Remind Yourself Of Your Why
There’s a reason you’ve decided to do that thing you keep putting off. Think about why you want to get it done. Is it so you get your tax refund? So you can run around with the kids? So you can find the clothes you actually want to wear? Find out your why. Write it down and then keep it front and center. Look at it every day before you get ready to get to work.
Tip #7: Just Start
I've saved the best for last. It's the easiest but also the most powerful. Hear this. Just get started. That's right, sometimes all you have to do is just get moving in the right direction. Do something. Do anything. Even if it's something super small. You get over that initial hump and start to build some momentum.
What is one small thing you can do today on that task you're putting off? Do that and see how you feel.
Rebecca Paciorek is an Online Business Manager specializing in assisting in the growth of your business through traditional and digital means.
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