You're about to learn how to stop procrastination.
Dead in its tracks.
Procrastination has STOLEN years of your life…
Procrastination has STOMPED on your dreams…
SHATTERED your confidence…
Good. Because it’s time to get revenge.
Read on for five tips to punch procrastination right in the face.
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Step 1 To Stop Procrastination: Get Help
It takes a bit of courage and humility to ask for help. But when it comes to procrastination – I guarantee that whoever you ask will relate. And they might be glad of your help too.
So have somebody hold you accountable. When we're just accountable to ourselves it's easy to justify putting off or avoiding what we need to do.
If you've got to explain it to somebody else… not so easy.
Accountability can be as simple as announcing what you're doing on Facebook.
Or try a sprint – get on Skype with someone and work together. Even if you're in different countries – they know what you need to get done, you know what they need to get done, and you hold each other accountable.
There are apps and automated ways to do this – but you might prefer the human element.
Working with someone you don't know well can be more effective than working with family and close friends.
This is because – if you start making excuses – someone who loves you is going to want to let you off the hook. A work colleague will hold you accountable.
Step 2 To Stop Procrastination: Eliminate Roadblocks
If you want to get somewhere – eliminate the roadblocks before you get started.
For example – do you want to go running first thing in the morning? If you wake up to a freezing cold house – you're not going to get out of bed.
I have to admit this is my roadblock. I eliminate it by stashing my gym clothes under the bedcovers – so I can get dressed and THEN get out of bed.
Want to learn new skills to get better at business? Maybe you want to study design, investing, or productivity itself.
When you want to learn – you face roadblocks. There's too much information out there – and too few good teachers you can trust.
So get rid of all the barriers before you start. Find a course that's reputable – something carefully curated that you can go right through.
Step 3 To Stop Procrastination: Raise The Stakes
You'll act differently when you have skin in the game.
Have you noticed how many people gamble on big sporting events like March Madness and Super Bowl?
People want to feel involved with these events. How do you do get involved with a sporting event when you don't normally follow sports? Put money on the line.
When you pay money, you'll pay attention – so try betting on yourself.
If you're going to go to a gym – why not hire a trainer? Put some money on the line so that you actually show up.
If you want to improve certain skills – instead of limiting yourself to free videos why not upgrade to a paid course?
Think of it this way – if you keep putting off improving your skills, how much will that cost you? When investing in a course gets you to take action, how quickly will it pay for itself?
When you have skin in the game you're more likely to execute and do what needs to get done.
Step 4 To Stop Procrastination: Keep Score
This is about measuring progress and maybe introducing a bit of competition.
Tracking your progress works even if it's just you.
When you can see consistent progress – you don't want to break the streak.
If you've got multiple people working on a similar project – try keeping score and see how the spirit of competition motivates the whole group.
Use keeping score to your advantage so that you take action – and you'll punch procrastination right in the face.
Step 5 To Stop Procrastination: Set A Time Limit
Ever notice the amount of time that you allot for a project is equal to the amount of time it actually takes to complete it?
This is known as Parkinson's law. Work expands to fit the time available.
You can use this to your advantage by setting up artificial time limits. Even a self-set time limit is surprisingly powerful – it really drives you to push yourself to meet it.
Try using a simple kitchen timer – the ticking can help remind you to focus. Plus it's separate from your phone so there are no distractions on it.
However, you can use your phone timer. The point is leverage – that twenty-five or forty-five minutes of focused time to get things done.
Bonus: Wake Up Early
In the Marines we had a saying that we got more done before 8:00 a.m. than most people got done all day.
My point? If you want to stop procrastinating – start early. Start your day at 5:00 a.m.
In those early morning hours most of the world is asleep. Nobody is bothering you – so you can stay focused in on what you really want to get done.
Bonus: Focus On One Thing
If you want to get something done in a short amount of time – you need to focus in on one thing.
Multitasking is a lie.
If you hear anyone telling you they can multitask – they are a liar.
Human beings can't multitask. They just switch from one project to another. And believe me – there is a switching cost.
When you take your focus off one thing and go on to another, you never really have a chance to get into the zone – to zero in and focus like a laser.
A laser will cut through steel – regular sunlight is just going to warm it up.
You want to be that laser. You want to be that concentrated beam of light that cuts through steel.
Summary – How To Be Laser Focused
Here's a quick cheat sheet so you can remember the steps to stop procrastination.
These do work – and they will work for YOU when you give them a chance.
- Get Help
- Eliminate Roadblocks
- Raise The Stakes
- Keep Score
- Set A Time Limit
- Wake Up Early
- Focus On One Thing