Procrastination is something I think we have all been guilty of at some stage – for me it was leaving school assignments until the last minute and then staying up the night before frantically trying to finish it off. Chances are if you were procrastinating back then, you are probably still are now – I still do : )
Different people procrastinate for different reasons; some people put things off purely and simply because they don’t want to do it, they may think the task is pointless, boring or just too hard. Others however, start the project and may finish it off, or almost finish it off and not hand it in or send it off; these people are perfectionist’s, and want everything to be 100% right or the best, and it is that fear of failure that causes them to procrastinate.
On the surface procrastinating may not seem like a bad thing; some of us work well under pressure, but we are not really being efficient, while the added pressure and extra stress may be fast tracking you to burnout.
So what do we need to do in order to stop procrastinating and improve efficiency? Well here are a few suggestions to help you get the ball rolling.
Make a ‘to do’ list – write down all the jobs that need to be done for the day, month and quarter – that way everything is documented and you know what needs to be done. Having a white board or forward planner in your office is great for this.
Now you know what needs to be done, you can begin to allocate time to certain projects, assignments and tasks. Use you diary and block out periods of time to work on the big projects. This will see you finish projects well before their deadline and save you a ton of stress and maybe some sleep in the future.
If you are one of the people who want things to be perfect – snap out of it – remember that your human. Humans make mistakes, and you and your work do not always have to be perfect. For a lot of things near enough is good enough, and handing in or presenting what you have done is better than not doing it all.
We all procrastinate from time to time – it is normal. There will still be times where we leave things until the last minute, but by following the some of the suggestions above you will know what is ahead and what needs to be done – you have just have to do it!