An insightful 3 step guide provided by a Psychology enthusiast.
Have you ever been in a situation where you’re about to start an important task and right when you’re about to begin you start thinking about all the other things you’d rather be doing such as cleaning your apartment, organizing your kitchen, doing the dishes, feeding your dog?
Well, you’re not alone!
Procrastination is a perfectly normal response. We’re hardwired to respond to stressful situations in a binary manner meaning we either fight or run. Unfortunately, no matter how much we avoid, eventually we’ll have to confront the procrastination demon we’re running away from.
Procrastination is essentially us running away from our responsibilities.
As a college student who’s number one priority is doing well in school, I’ve managed to master these simple yet challenging techniques. Here’s a list of things you can do to challenge your inner critique and get stuff done!
1. Figure you why exactly you’re putting off doing something
Sometimes we avoid working on something simply because it seems like too big of a mountain to climb. Maybe you find yourself feeling overwhelmed by all of the stuff you have to do.
The best way to tackle that is to take a deep breath and just START!
You can either start with what’s due first or what is worth the most. Keep in mind that the cliche quote “It always seems impossible until it’s done” is a cliche for a reason.
If you’re still conflicted about where to start — break down the big task into smaller more achievable goals. Make a list of things you know for a fact you can get done today. One of the benefits of having smaller goals is that it’s quantifiable. As you check them off it feels good and you get a sense of accomplishment.
If you’re working on a passion project like launching a blog, learning a new language — setting a deadline can be a lifesaver! More often than not it’s better to just have things done than to have them be perfect.
2. Prevent a wandering mind
Although phones are incredibly useful, they can also be a huge distraction.
Whenever you sit down to do work, turn off all unnecessary notifications that could distract you and if possible, completely turn your phone off.
You’d be surprised at the amount of time you instinctively check your phone to distract yourself from your task.
3. One task at a time
Having multiple projects going on at the same time is completely fine but while you’re working, you should focus on one.
Something that helps with this is incorporating the Pomodoro Technique.
The Pomodoro Technique is a time management system that encourages people to work with the time they have — rather than against it. The idea is simple. Using this method, you break your workday into smaller chunks (usually 25 minutes) separated by five-minute breaks. These intervals are referred to as pomodoros. It introduces a sense of urgency so rather than feeling like you have unlimited time, you’re given a chunk of time to make as much progress as you can.