Waiting to do tasks until the very last minute seems to be a common habit for most people. In fact, “about 95% of people admit to putting off work, according to Piers Steel, author of The Procrastination Equation.” To take that percentage and apply it to the business world, the numbers are mind-blowing! A recent study of 10,000 U.S. employees polled, revealed that the average worker self-admitted to wasting 2.09 hours each day on non-job-related activities. Considering the average salaried employee makes $39,795, that means procrastination costs employers $10,396 per year – per employee. It’s safe to say that procrastination has a large price tag.
Why do we procrastinate? There are many reasons and many excuses as to why we procrastinate. Maybe it’s out of fear? Lack of desire? Lack of commitment? Maybe it’s simply not something that, in our head, is worth doing? Whatever the reason, there are ways to overcome procrastination. We have the potential to rewire our brains to choose productivity over procrastination.
How do we change this procrastination into productivity? The solution is as simple as one word – motivation. The main cause behind procrastination is lack of motivation On a neurological level, procrastination is not the slightest bit logical — it’s the result of the emotional part of your brain… The logical part of your brain surrenders the moment you choose Facebook over work, or decide to binge another episode of House of Cards when you get home. We have the capability to change our attitude to drop the percentage of procrastination dramatically in our day to day lives.
We must create a habit of “doing it NOW.” If we do it right when we think about it, we’re more likely to get it done. It’s like listening to a catchy song, only to have it unexpectedly cut off in the middle and then have it stuck in your head the rest of the day. Starting a task means you’ll continue to process it — and this makes you more likely to resume the work later on. My mom always said, “if you start something, you finish it.” It didn’t matter if she meant the vegetables on my plate or my freshman year of college. We have a natural desire to finish what we start. SO START TODAY. Choose today to be productive instead of procrastinating.
At times, we don’t see or understand the benefit of completing the tasks that we put off. We find any excuse to not do these everyday tasks. This action of delaying or postponing something is called procrastination. Fortunately, we have to potential to overcome this bad habit. If we make the decision to “do it now,” that procrastination transforms into productivity! Productivity amplifies the efficient work within a business and in return, gives profitable results. Make the decision today to be PRODUCTIVE.
TURNING PROCRASTINATION INTO PRODUCTIVITY
Every day prioritize all of your tasks on your “To-Do List.” Rank them from most important to least important then STICK TO IT. Start from the top of the list and go down without skipping around.
You need accountability! The best way to hold yourself accountable is by having a deadline set for each task. Use your calendar!
Make smaller steps to accomplish the bigger task. There’s the saying, “How do you eat an elephant? Bite by bite.” Creating bite-sized tasks diminishes the overwhelming feeling and fear that comes along with a big project. Take it easy on yourself by taking one step at a time.
- Treat yourself! As you make progress, give yourself a reward.
Set milestones for each big goal. If you get to a certain point, reward yourself with some ice cream, or even a lap around the office. This gives you the motivation to finish!
There’s always a light at the end of the tunnel. We have to visual the end so we can pace ourselves to FINISH the task at hand. Plus, imagining the feeling of finishing is a reward in itself.