Procrastination

“Never put off until tomorrow what you can do today”

Its an adage that I grew up with – but how often, once you are an adult and can make these decisions, do we justify putting off tasks or just “forget” to do them in a timely manner?

I’m a great list maker. I will write a list every morning that covers my tasks and goals for the day. Do I ever finish the list? No. Do I ever add tasks I complete that weren’t there to begin with? Most definitely yes!! I have even tried making the list a weekly one in the hope that I will be disciplined about doing everything and not put off the tasks I either don’t want to start or don’t know how to start. And there’s a hint about mastering procrastination.

I put off the tasks I don’t want to start or don’t know how to start. Let’s deal with the second one. If a listed task is too big or broad, it makes me feel that I can’t complete it in a day or week, then I am less inclined to make a start on it because I wont have the satisfaction of crossing it off the list. Easy solution. Break it down into component tasks that can be completed in the timeframe. This approach also allows for better management of the task, so you can review the components and efficient ways of completing them as you go.

With the tasks I don’t want to start, I need to really explore why they are on the list and what each task actually entails. For example – I put down a broad task such as “change theme on Blah Blah website”. I don’t enjoy wading through themes trying to find one that works, mostly because I don’t have any real idea of what I want before I start. What I should do is determine what I want in the theme, list those features, search for one that matches and then do the installation. Again it is breaking down the task to manageable chunks, also providing structure to the process.

So tomorrow when I do my daily task list, I am going to make each one very specific, small and identifiable. In 24 hours time I am going to have them all ticked off or at least at a stage where I have attempted them all!!

About the author

Kim Baillie


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