We all do it…it’s a bad habit which we sometimes just slip into for a quick tick. Procrastination ultimately prevents you from following through on what you have set out to do, which in most cases, you are just putting off the inevitable, which is study, assignments and essays. As a result, it will mean you usually leave things to the last minute, making excuses for not getting things done, and overall stress you out!
It’s easy to feel unmotivated, especially when it come to school, TAFE or university, and as you are pretty much your own boss you get to dictate when, where and how you get your work done. Many things can lead to procrastinating, a common example – if you’re not in the right head space, not enjoying your course syllabus or feeling overwhelmed with the workload, it is easy to switch off and let procrastination slip in. You’re not going to prioritise something you don’t enjoy, but reality is, they are tasks that have to be done.
So, need some tips to say goodbye to procrastination and get your motivation mojo back? Here’s a few:
1. Eliminate distractions
If you are planning on studying for your exams or writing an essay, you are going to need to be concentrating for long periods of time and your mobile will just be a distraction. Remove the temptation and leave it in another room on airplane mode so you can’t hear the buzz of the silent ring while you’re studying. It’s easy to start procrastinating when you begin to get tired or get over studying and then before you know it, you’ve reached for your phone to ‘switch off’ for a minute and then 45 minutes later realise you are deep in the Instagram vortex and you’ve completely missed out on that study time. Eliminate distractions by only taking the bare minimum you need to study sessions.
2. Set yourself deadlines
Set yourself achievable goals in a specific timeframe to get your work done. This helps to break your work down and give yourself a reward for completing each task as you go. Once you have, reward yourself and maybe catch up with a friend for an hour, or go de-stress at the gym. With each task completed (and in a timely fashion) you will power through the to-do list and be more focused at the tasks at hand. This will stop procrastination in its tracks!
3. Work when you feel most alert and efficient
Are you a morning person or more of a night owl? Make your timetable work for you, if you are exhausted make sure you sleep and just work later into the night. There is no point waking up super early to just procrastinate all morning. Listen to your body and work when you are on top of your a-game.
4. Motivation and positivity is key, maybe it’s time to change up your perspectives on tasks?
We read something really cool this morning and it went a little bit like this:
“Try replacing “I’m sorry” with “thank you”.
So instead of saying “I’m sorry I was late” say “thank you for waiting for me”.
Replacing negativity with positivity and gratitude breaks the “I’m sorry” cycle.
This in itself is powerful. Imagine if you could flip your mind into a positive place prior to starting your studies or assignments, if you could think of the positives about furthering your education and each task is one step closer to your ultimate life goals. With a motivated and positive mind, procrastination will become a thing of the past.
5. Reward yourself
Right now, you already overcome procrastination occasionally, right? Sometimes you have the willpower, you have the strength, and you get it done. Now, simply reinforce this behaviour. From this moment going forward, every single time you overcome the urge to procrastinate, every single time you manage to follow through, every single time you get something done, reward yourself. Rewards can be anything from internal praise, keeping an accomplishment list, or giving yourself some time off study and going to do something that makes you feel good and that’s just for you. You choose; this is your special reward!
Yes, procrastinating sucks, but beating yourself up over it only makes things worse. Instead, learn the ways of self-compassion. Create an environment that fosters growth and high achievement and you will be on your way to making procrastination a thing of the past!
Photo by Sander Smeekes on Unsplash