Procrastination Busters

Prune your to-do list of the non-essential items you know you’ll never do.
For that must-do task you’ve been putting off, just do it – ideally, the first thing in the morning. This frees your mental energy – often, not-doing something drains you more than doing it.

Identify a part of the disliked task that’s fairly pleasant – such as calling a colleague for information – and do that first, to get your feet wet. Or make a list of the various steps involved.

Schedule hunks of time to tackle work that requires concentration. Actually make an appointment with yourself. Let voice mail pick up your calls. You’ll make a lot of headway in a short time.

If the task is really objectionable, promise yourself you’ll tackle it just for 10 minutes, then if it’s killing you, you can stop. You may find it’s not so bad and can easily keep going until finished..

If you want to avoid being distracted by email or the internet, put your computer behind you. You’ll have to swivel around in your chair to check your email for the umpteenth time, or to Google something you’re only mildly curious about. Going to the computer will now be a conscious decision.

Avoid the temptation to shift from one half-finished task to another. This task-hopping is a form of stealth procrastination that many of us do without knowing it.

For digitally managing tasks with sub-tasks, watch for our upcoming article “Use Outlook to Keep Track of Multi-Part Tasks” in the next issue of this eLetter.

Some of the best procrastination advice is from Alan Lakein – pre-tech era, but still excellent.

Reprinted with permission from Jan Jasper. (c) Jan Jasper 2009. Jan Jasper is author of Take Back Your Time: How to Regain Control of Work, Information, and Technology, published by St. Martin’s Press.

About The PriorityPro
Natalie Gahrmann, an international expert, empowers professional women to ignite their passion, demonstrate personal leadership and exude greater confidence. Her background in business acumen and leadership development is instinctively applied through 1-1 coaching, workshops and keynote presentations. She can help you gain clarity, focus and direction so that you accomplish more of what's important to YOU!

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