Do you have a job to finish but you rather spend an hour talking on the phone or scrolling on social?
Well, procrastination is what you choose to do when you avoid doing something else that you must do or is of great importance to you. People usually choose to ignore important tasks that are less pleasant in favor of other tasks that they enjoy. However, those tasks are important for a reason, and in this post, we are going to share some of the best tips to help you stop procrastinating.
All people are prone to procrastination, thus there is so much talk about this issue. We are all guilty of looking out of the window on a beautiful summer day instead of working on a boring excel sheet full of numbers. Some people, though, give in to this impulse of avoiding the important tasks far too often. People who are most prone to procrastination usually are less productive and hardly ever accomplish their goals.
Although procrastination is something common for almost all of us, when it becomes a habit, it might be the source of more serious problems. In these cases, procrastination might lead to loss of motivation for life, depression, and anxiety. Once procrastination leads to such issues, looking out for some professional advice might be the right choice.
However, in most cases, procrastination could be dealt as another bad habit. Hard to beat as all bad habits but yet not unfeasible. It just needs willpower, determination, the right guidance, and, of course, consistency in your attempts to win. So, what are those tips to help you stop procrastinating?
“The scholar’s greatest weakness: calling procrastination research.”Stephen King, 11/22/63
Read also: 8 Useful Tips to Gain the Power of Building Consistency
Tips to Help You Stop Procrastinating
1. Understand That You Are Procrastinating
Apart from the fact that procrastination itself means we ignore one important task in favor of another more pleasant one, we are usually also tempted to ignore the fact that we procrastinate.
We usually find silly excuses we say to ourselves like “once I eat an ice cream I will have more energy” and then “once I make another coffee I will be ready” and so on. Whatever you choose to do instead of that important one, understand all you do is procrastinate.
Read also: How to Be Happy with Yourself and Feel Happy Alone
2. Understand Why You are Procrastinating
Why do you procrastinate? Is it that the task is really that unpleasant or you just don’t know how to do it and where to start from? Could it be that you need to look into it before you work on it? Do you simply find it boring? Do you worry you are not good enough to pool it through?
Whatever it is, just identify why you don’t wish to work on it and you rather do something else instead.
Read also: This is How Slow Living Benefits Your Life
3. Accept That Sometimes You Are Not That Productive
Sometimes you understand you are in lack the energy you need to accomplish something. You might have had poor sleep or you have a headache. You might have other issues in your mind that you simply cannot concentrate on anything.
Well, it happens to all. Understand that these days, you are just less productive. Procrastination is something different. Even on those days that your energy levels are low, you can still work on important tasks. Maybe doing some organizational work or just some simple steps of the process. Whatever you find most feasible.
Read also: Do you Lack Self-Confidence? 5 Tips to Boost it
4. Start Working
In my opinion, the best of all tips to overcome procrastination is to start working on this task you try to avoid. Just commit yourself to work on it for 5 minutes. Usually, the hard step of the process is the first one. Once this first step is made, usually, you will find yourself working for more than 5 minutes and having already accomplished something.
5. Work Clever, Not Hard
If your energy levels are high in the morning and you spend this time of the day procrastinating and doing all the fun stuff, probably you will spend the rest of the day feeling overwhelmed by this important task you cannot pull through.
Choose to work clever rather than hard. Use your more energetic time within the day to work on this task that you procrastinate, even if it is just for 5 minutes. If you offer this time during your more productive time of the day, you will make progress. After all, once you are done with the important ones, you can then have the rest of the day available for all the pleasant ones.
Read also: How to Recharge Yourself Emotionally – 8 Ideas to Help
6. Take it Easy
Most of the tasks you procrastinate working on might probably seem hard or too difficult. However, even the most demanding tasks can be broken down into smaller, more manageable, and easier to handle tasks. There is no need to start with what you do not know. Start with the steps you already know how to pull through.
Take those first easy steps and after completing them, you would have already made some progress. This progress could become your motive. You could then dedicate the rest of your available time to figure out the rest.
Read also: 6 Reasons To Stop Looking For Your Purpose in Life
7. Take Breaks
Make sure you take enough breaks while working on something you procrastinated on for too long. Working endless hours on a task you were already trying to avoid will only make you want to avoid this task even more next time. Work on small productive chunks of time and see your task progressing.
8. Overcome your Fears
When I talked about understanding the reasons you procrastinate, I made some questions. Most of these questions show some kind of fear, fear that we know little, fear that we are not enough to pull something through.
All these fears are equal to the well-known fear of failure. Everyone is afraid but yet some people move ahead and overcome this fear. Fear of failure usually makes people over-analyze things instead of taking any action, which leads to paralysis by analysis.
Some other people might even be afraid of the fact that they might succeed. They actually feel like they are not worthy of success and all they do is self-sabotaging themselves.
Read also: How to Identify Analysis Paralysis – Best Tips to Win It
9. Identify that Procrastination is Not Laziness
Everyone procrastinates now and then. Some people do it more often compared to others, yet that does not mean that someone who procrastinates is lazy. If you think so for yourself, maybe you have also believed it and convinced yourself that this is how things are and you are lazy.
Procrastination does not mean laziness. Thinking of yourself as a lazy person because you do so is another wrong perception that you should change.
Read also: Perception is Reality – 4 Tips to Help You Alter it
10. Reward Yourself Each Time You Beat Procrastination
Promise yourself that if you work on this boring important task for one hour, you will have a small candy or buy yourself a coffee. It does not have to be something big. It could just be a small motive. Something you can long for while working on something you do not like that much.
Read also: You Strive For Perfection? Successful Aren’t Perfectionists
11. Validate Your lifestyle
Could it be that you really have a lack of energy, thus you always prefer to procrastinate the important tasks you must work on? Do you get enough sleep every night? Is a healthy diet and exercise part of your life or not?
Maybe you do not procrastinate because you prefer to do something more enjoyable instead. It could be just that you should blame your lifestyle for this lack of energy.
Read also: What Nobody Tells You About Life – 20 Facts to Know
Final Thoughts on Tips to Help You Stop Procrastinating
For most people, procrastination is mostly a bad habit they must work on in order to change. Be aware of the fact that you are procrastinating and identify why you are doing so.
I hope the tips provided in this post will help you deal with procrastination and start working on all your important tasks.
“Only put off until tomorrow what you are willing to die having left undone”Pablo Picasso
What do you do to beat procrastination?
I would love to read your thoughts in the comments below.
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55 thoughts on “11 Best Tips to Help You Stop Procrastinating”
Knowing why we hold back makes a difference Eri. As I hesitate I like to figure out….why? Fear is always the reason. However, close analysis may reveal the specific type of fear appearing to hold me back. Dive in. Look at your mind genuinely. Find the fear. Feel it. Moving forward, you will move into action freely once you ID the cause of holding back.
I couldn’t agree more with you Rayan. Definitely to identify why you are proceastinating something is the most important step to move forward. Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂
What a great topic and article. Every point you mentioned made me go, ah yes. Haha.
I can be a master procrastinator, but I do sometimes apply the 5 minute advice and just start. I also realize that when it is something that I really like or care about I can work for hours easily.
The 5 minutes advice really works. That is what I usually do also. Than you for reading and commenting!
I love all of these ideas! It is indeed hard sometimes to accept that I cannot be productive every day, especially when I want to do so much. I often feel guilty whether I’m procrastinating or not. I need to remind myself that I’m just low on energy. Thank you for writing this beautiful post x
It is hard not to feel guilty. I know… Thank you for commenting 🙂
Honestly, I didn’t know a lot about it before but once I understood it. It helped me to find a way to deal with it
Glad you found it helpful. Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂
This is a great post. We definitely agree that just recognizing procrastination and why goes a long way in overcoming procrastination. Thank you for sharing this.
Thank you so much for reading and commenting 🙂
I always considered procrastination to be laziness to some degree. I think everyone have put off starting a task. but as you said when procrastination becomes a habit, it creates problems. Thanks for sharing these thought provoking tips. We all will benefits from them.
The hints and tips you’ve shared are so useful! I go through cycles of procrastination so I will remember these ideas the next time it hits!
Procrastinating used to be one of my bad habits. I get rid of it by using positive affirmations. Btw, thank you for sharing your tips.
I can sometimes be guilty of procrastination, so I find setting small goals and targets to keep me on track helps. Thank you for sharing your tips.
Small goals to help indeed. Thank you Lauren!
Great post as always Eri. I struggle with procrastination at times. I know I’m doing it, I know why I’m doing it. Many times it comes down to the task or project while ‘important’ isn’t anything that I ‘care about’. That is the root of many struggles for me – I can’t make myself care.
I can totally understand what you mean. Thank you for commenting 🙂
I desperately needed this! My procrastination has been so bad since I got a full time job. I just want to come home and chill in the evenings and end up putting everything off until later. But it’s ALWAYS later.
Oh I know this feeling… Procrastination comes so natural when you already feel tired that you must fight to beat it.
This honestly couldn’t have come at a better time for me! I’m awful at procrastinating but I have some really big exams coming up soon and I really need to get on top of my revision. I often find that once I’ve started I’m ok, it’s just getting the motivation to do that! Taking breaks is super important too. Thank you so much for sharing!
I am glad my post came at tge right time for you! Thank you ❤️
Procrastination plays with our emotions. We put off doing tasks for many reasons, even when we know the delay will wreak havoc with our minds until it’s completed. But as you said, it’s identifying what causes us to delay—approaching the task in bite-size chunks and when we have the most energy.
You summed the important steps up efficiently. Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂
What a perfect post as I’m sitting here procrastinating about housework, my most hated chore. Thank you for kicking me up the bum
Haha, I also procrastinate a lot on this one. My pleasure!
Oh I’m definitely guilty of procrastinating. I love your suggestion of just working on something for a few minutes, though. More often than not, when you do that, you’ll end up continuing the work and getting more done.
I think this is the most powerful tip of the list. Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂
Procrastinating reading your post :’) I usually turn on productive music to overcome procrastination. Something energetic and upbeat.
Haha! Glad to read you have found something that works for you!
Great tips for dealing with procrastination. I get this often.
We all do so. Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂
Great post! I am definitely guilty of procrastinating. There are a few things that have helped me: recognizing it (like you say) and just starting. It’s so true that just getting started is the hardest part. And then, you get that great feeling of having accomplished something, and sometimes that is enough to keep going!
Thank you Colleen 😊
Great tips – love the one about fuelling your body.
I love these tips
These are great tips. I love the idea of working smart not hard. I definitely want to try and work more like this.
Thank you for reading and commenting Kelly!
Brilliant article, thank you for sharing! I bet most of us can relate to it, but your points are all very important in tackling it. I need to take a deep bow for my mum when it comes to this: she successfully drilled it into the core of my brain that “If you get it done now, it’s DONE! Then you don’t need to think about it, let alone do it anymore”. Her voice in my head has taught me to avoid procrastination often, not always. Taking a break is also a very important point, as you mentioned: nothing good ever came from forcing it 🙂
Teresa Maria | Outlandish Blog
You have a wise mam Teresa. Thank you very much for your wonderful comment 🙂
I struggle so much with procrastination, it’s insane. I’ve been adding more movement and productive music to help me get through it all.
When it becomes a bad habit it is hard to deal with. Thank you for reading and commenting!
I find that talking to others about what I’m procrastinating about helps a lot. I usually get a lot of different ideas on how to look at things which inspires me.
Crystal | http://www.amazingbaby.app
There are so many things that we may put off but if we keep doing so now these things can become a whole lot more to get accomplished. You made great points in the post. Enjoyed reading your post. My question is: “Why put off for tomorrow what you can do today.” Also, take one day at a time and accomplish what you can (set goals) remembering tomorrow is not promised ☺️
Pastor Natalie (ExamineThisMoment)
Great tips and I think understanding WHY you’re procrastinating is a really good one. There’s a reason, more often than not. And the sooner we find out why and how to manage that, the quicker we can stop procrastinating!
Thank you Jenny! I am glad you liked it.
Lately, I’ve been procrastinating so much and funnily enough, ‘just starting’ is what often works best for me. To just force my self to sit behind the computer and start typing, even though the start is rubbish.
I think starting is the best tip also. Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂
I think your best tip is your suggestion to just sit down and try working on something; I find that by starting, I cannot stop and that really helps get me out of a procrastination rut! <3
That is what works best for me also Jaya. Thank you for commenting 🙂
Very good article and important suggestions regarding procrastination. There may be some things that can be postponed but we must be careful to recognize when we may be procrastinating very various reasons. Thank you for sharing. ☺️
Pastor Natalie (ExamineThisMoment)
I am glad you liked it Natalie. Thank you for reading and commenting 🙂
All these tips are fabulous and can be life-saving to many of us. Number 3 and 4 were my favorites. I try to tell myself to just give it a go, even if it is for only 20 minutes. Using the Pomodoro technique in this regard has also helped me. Thank you for sharing this wonderful and helpful list!
I do agree Vanessa that just starting with something is a great way to beat procrastination. It is also my favourite of all tips. Thank you for commenting ❤️