Be honest: How much of your work stress is related to procrastination? Are you one of those people that procrastinate regularly and find reasons to rationalize it? Part of it is that some produce their best work when they’re under pressure and have a tighter deadline, but the bigger, more truthful fact of the matter is that most are just easily distracted. Sometimes, when there’s something that people really need to get done, they opt to do the easier tasks first than tackle the big project, or they decide “this can wait until tomorrow.”
The description above is one I’m sure many of you in the real estate field can relate to. The bottom line is that if you stopped procrastinating, your professional and personal lives would be a lot less stressful and anxiety-provoking. Instead of being stressed out about meeting a deadline the night before it’s due, you tackle it right away, get it done, and move on to the next part of your day. It sounds easy enough, but in the moment, the temporary irritation, stress or anxiety of tackling a project you’d rather procrastinate seems far less favorable than putting it off. The key is to remember the feeling that procrastination gives you and fight the urge to put things off.
There are many effective ways that you can kick procrastination to the curb. These are just a few of them:
Admit that you procrastinate. You hear it all the time: the first step to recovery is admitting that you have a problem. In all seriousness, many procrastinators actually deny that they do it. They don’t realize that they’re participating in that sort of behavior. They rationalize their procrastination away instead of taking ownership of it. If you can’t own your problem, then you’ll never be able to fix it. Instead, you’ll continue to let the problem control you and dictate how you do things in your personal and professional life. If you can admit to yourself that you procrastinate, then you can take ownership of the problem and start being more aware of when you do it.
Schedule a meeting with yourself. This might sound a little silly, but if you take some time to regroup once every week or two weeks, you can review what it is that you have to do and set a concrete due date for it. Not everything, personally and professionally, will have a set time of completion. Sometimes, in order for a task to be done, you have to put pressure on yourself to complete. Having standing meetings with yourself will force you to review where you’re at with a project and set concrete goals for next steps. It’s a great way to put your procrastination in perspective.
Figure out your “best time.” Everyone typically has one time of the day where they are the most productive. Figure out when that is and choose to tackle what you want to procrastinate at that time of the day. Your focus will be elevated and you can accomplish more in a shorter period of time.
If you need to, break things down. It’s much easier to tackle a larger, daunting project or task if you break it down into smaller components. When you get a task that you want to procrastinate, the first thing you should do is sit down and break it down into steps. Then, assign due dates for each of those steps. Once you have a plan of action, that task will seem a lot less scary, and you can get to work faster.
These are just a few of the many ways that you can rid yourself of that pesky problem that we call procrastination. Once you start making a habit out of NOT procrastinating, you will most likely find that your life isn’t as stressful and that you’re not as nervous to tackle bigger projects. Remember—the best way to be successful is to continuously challenge yourself. The only way to grow in business is to prioritize and execute quality work. Your procrastination habits are a hindrance. Don’t let yourself succumb to it!
Have an awesome day!