As Seen in AMEX Open forum, USA Today, The Charlotte Observer, America's Premier Experts, the Daily

As Seen in AMEX Open forum, USA Today, The Charlotte Observer, America's Premier Experts, the Daily

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Procrastination Defensive Mantra

What do you do that makes you face your least enjoyable tasks? 

Every successful entrepreneur has an effective defense against procrastination.

There are things that need to be done in every business that no one wants to do. If those essential things aren't done, procrastination can kill a business. For me, my defense is a strategy I got pretty good at while taking my business Dance Yourself Fit LLC through the the Business Accelerator Coaching Program through People Biz and Count Me In.

For me the procrastination defense starts with a firm idea in my head of a vision for where I'm going with the business. 

Having a firm vision gives you two things:  the motivation and tasks.   It's that big picture vision for what the organization is going to contribute that provides the motivation necessary to overcome the procrastination.

With your mind on the long term vision, can you see a reason for actually accomplishing the annoying tasks?  

Those annoying tasks are on your to do list because you have a plan that comes from connecting the dots between where you are now and where you want to be in the next few months and years. Connect those dots in finer and finer elements to come up with "digestible work pieces."

 One skill that gets easier with practice is to recognize when you are procrastinating in the first place. When I see myself change windows on my computer to check my email instead of working on the finance docs I should be focusing on, my defense is a mantra that I have printed off and have taped to the wall next to my desk.  I read it outloud: "I am really, REALLY excited about where this company is going! In order to get to the end goals that I have set out for myself I have to do the hard work sometimes and NOW is one of those times. If I don't do this task now, I will be less likely to meet the goals I know I want to achieve."

Reading that out loud usually makes me click back to what's important and what needs to be done.

So to summarize here are 7 steps to accomplishing "those" tasks and stop procrastinating:

  1. Why are you doing it again? Not to get it done but what is a positive long term outcome?
  2. Remember who cares if you get this done and how it will affect your relationships with them. 
  3. Give yourself a time limit to accomplish part of the task.
  4. Use fear of disappointing others in your favor. Tell at least 1 other person that you are going to do task X and you'll be done by time Y.
  5. Make yourself a motto and write it on a sticky note on your desk. Leave it there until the time is up.  
  6. If you find yourself procrastinating (and it will happen to the best of us), repeat out loud, your procrastination defense motto. 
  7. Somehow, some way, please celebrate when you're done! 

What I'd your procrastination defense? Post your comments below.

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