I Will check up on her later, I will do the laundry later, I will do the Assignment later, I will call home later, let me quickly finish this episode of Grey’s Anatomy and I will begin studying. The episode ends and she goes wow 😮 that was interesting I think I should watch the next episode, she stands up and makes herself a bowl of Cereal (the mouth should also be kept busy while the eyes is working). Two hours later she says to herself I can’t study now I am too tired let me take a quick Nap, I will study when I wake up. Eventually she wakes up but it’s late and because she spent the important part of her day doing things which weren’t so important in other words she spent the day procrastinating, she has to stay up very late studying. This person is me.
I have been struggling with this for almost a month. One way or the other at some point in our lives we have been victims of procrastination. It just creeps in gradually until all of a sudden you realise you are no longer as productive as you used to be or should be. If you have been procrastinating lately don’t worry you are not alone I am also facing that and I assure you we can do better.
Like I said earlier procrastination usually creeps in gradually and so I decided to point out some of those early signs based on my experience.
1. Later: when the word later becomes a major part of your vocabulary especially when you know for sure you are not doing anything at that particular moment and there is nothing stopping you from beginning that task beware. An example of later statements are I will make the phone call later, or I will do the assignment later, or I will apologise later…. ask yourself why not now?
2. When the less important things start becoming your priority: There is nothing wrong with having your leisure time but when leisure time begins to take over work time and you find yourself having less time to be productive all in the name of leisure time beware.
3. All of a sudden you are president of the “Deadline”community : you find yourself constantly trying to meet a deadline, something you had 2 months or 1 month to prepare for, and you are just about to begin 2 days before it’s due date hmmmm something is wrong.
4. I still have time: This is another statement most of us use to make excuses for our shortcomings, and we all need to be cautious of it. Time belongs to no one. I remember growing up my teacher’s used to always say a stitch in time saves nine which means if you sort out a problem immediately it may save extra work later.
5. Nonchalant attitude: it is one thing for you to not want to overthink or stress yourself about a task you have at hand, and it’s another thing for you not to show any form of interest or concern towards that thing. If you habitually find yourself in this sort of situation you need to call yourself to attention because lack of interest in a thing can drastically slow down the process of getting things done.
Since we have looked at some signs of procrastination let’s look at some steps or things we can do to combat procrastination and make us more productive. (this steps are also based on my experience).
1. Make a to-do list and stick to it: I can tell you that one of my most productive days were days which I had a to-do list. Once you know what your activities for the day are and you have them penned down it makes things so much easier and faster. I would advice you to make your list the night before so you can start off your morning already prepared for the day.
2. Preference: your to-do list has to be based on a preference scale. The important activities for the day should come up first and then the least important ones can follow.
3. Discipline: As easy as planning your day might sound, it takes discipline for you to be able to stick to that plan, trust me there are days when that plan will not just work but it doesn’t mean you will stop trying which leads me to the fourth point.
4. Have an accountability partner: having someone who you can be accountable to really makes a whole lot of difference. You guys can check up on each other during the day or preferably at the end of the day to give an account of your progress.
5. Set a goal/goals: setting up a goal or goals you would love to have accomplished by the end of the week really helps to keep you motivated.
6. Give yourself a treat: everyone deserves to give themselves a treat regardless of how little the milestone you were able to accomplish.
7. One step at a time: Remember this is like a baby who is learning how to walk, so don’t be too hard on yourself on days when you slip, just get up and know you can do better and you will do better.
Everything I have shared today are based solely on my experience so please feel free to leave your suggestions/advice.
Thank you so much for taking out time to read my writeup God bless you.
Have an amazing and productive weekend