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Procrastination bust!

“Maybe I could write this article tomorrow…” Tomorrow comes, and there you go again. It’s time to pull up your bootstraps!

Procrastination, the long-winded word has a lot to trip you up with. It means to put off, or defer an action till another day in time. Instead of tackling first things first, you prefer to squander time just because you are in no mood to work.

You may prefer to take on inconsequential tasks like answering mail, making telephone calls and justify this by calling it ‘priority’. At the end of the day, major tasks suffer as a result and you are in the ‘last minute rut’ again.

Here are some ways to fight back.

• Toughest ones first: A particular part of a project may seem the toughest, or a certain task may loom ominously in the background- that’s the one to tackle first. This will help ease the nagging concern and help you do the other jobs better. As the feel good factor takes effect, your confidence levels will also reach a new high.

• Check listing: One effective way to prioritise your work is to draw up a checklist where you list the jobs in their order of priority. Make sure you keep it in a handy place so that you can update it on a daily basis. Allot more time for the major jobs and marginalise the minor ones.

• When emotions interfere: Maybe you have failed in the first attempt and your emotions are riding low as a result. Just because you lack the backing of a success does not give an excuse to procrastinate. If you have to improve and enhance your skills to equip you, now’s the time to do it. If you are going through a crisis- it could be a personal loss or a disappointment, and it becomes extremely overwhelming, take time off to get over the loss. This will help speed up the recouping process. Give a hint of it to your colleagues, you might find yourself the support and sympathy you need.

• Mission impossible: When tasks make you stagger, and impending jobs loom large, you may be tempted to buckle under the pressure and give in to procrastination. Don’t think of the task as a Herculean one, but break it down into smaller manageable tasks. If it means you have to delegate some work to your co-worker or subordinate, then do so.

• Perfection: The benchmark Strive towards Perfection and don’t ever compromise on quality. There’s no use doing a hotch-potch, rushed up job of it. So make sure you deliver top quality work, even if you have to work overtime towards this.

• Don’t pass the buck: Don’t try and blame circumstances or people for your inefficiency. You may say, “if only I had got that promotion, I would have given more towards my job”. Stop the ‘ifs’ and ‘if onlys’ and get on with the job and you’ll be surprised at the work you are actually capable of!

• Reviewing helps: Analyse your performance at the end of the day and try to plug those leaks. There may have been ways you could have done a better job. Try and implement improvements the next time around.There is hope for those who want to beat procrastination. According to research it happens to be one of those habits most amenable to change.

There’s a way out for those who want to change and half the battle is won for those of us who have made up our mind to fight procrastination.

Posted in Careers & Employability, Talent & Skill Development.

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