Why We Put Things Off

Have you ever stayed up all night to get something done because you waited until the last minute?  Most of us have experienced procrastination at one time or another. There are many reasons why people procrastinate:

  • fear of becoming overwhelmed because a project seems too big
  • fear of failing
  • lack of enthusiasm for a particular task or project

But when it comes down to it, the reasons don’t matter. You can overcome procrastination, because it’s just a habit and it can be changed.

How to Change the Procrastination Habit

Here’s a great tip that works for many of my clients. The next time you find yourself procrastinating about something, set a timer for 10 minutes and take the first step towards accomplishing it. This can be as simple as finding a file or making a list of the steps involved to complete a project. The point of this exercise is to just get started.

Most of the time you’ll be motivated enough to keep going after 10 minutes, but if you aren’t, you can give yourself permission to stop. Knowing you can stop if you want to is what makes this exercise so powerful and effective.

Action for the Week: Take action on something you’ve been procrastinating about and see if this tip works for you.