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Procrastination is a challenge for all of us – no one is excluded.
Why do we procrastinate?
- We fear feeling bad. Napoleon Bonaparte said: “He who fears being conquered, is sure of defeat” We don’t want to feel bad, so we avoid it.
- We postpone starting. We delay the start, because we believe we need more information, research etc. These are just excuses. If we do not start, then we do not fail.
- Lack of self-discipline. “In reading the lives of great men, I found that the first victory they won was over themselves…self-discipline with all of them came first” said Harry Truman. We need to change habits and make them rituals. Achieve that 1% extra every day.
- Waiting for perfection. Nothing is perfect, and waiting for perfection can paralyze us. It is simply an excuse. Apply principle of – ready, fire, aim, not the more common version!
- We fear success. We can sabotage our own success. Success brings the responsibility of change, and we are not comfortable with change.
5 Tips to overcome procrastination:
1. Don’t blow it out of proportion. If you want to make an easy job hard, put it off. We let our emotions – how we feel – dictate our decisions. That is a poor strategy for your life. Your emotions will change once you get going. Don’t dwell.
2. Quit thinking and just do it. Martin Luther King said: “How soon not now becomes never”. Over thinking something can be it’s undoing – the more I wait for the “right time” it never comes. Get into the “lean” concept – get going and evolve along the way.
3. Make a decision. Just make a decision and move forward from there. Remember what Theodore Roosevelt said: ““In a moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing to do, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing.” You get momentum and gain a positive self-image when you make a decision and take action.
4. Take the first step. The act of taking the first step changes your state of mind – you have momentum, you are on your way. Stop worrying if it is the right step – it is just the first step. You can correct afterwards – don’t be rigid in your planning.
5. Finish it. An uncompleted task is draining you psychologically and energetically – it stays in your subconscious. Like trying to drive with the brakes on.
Procrastination is a choice – it is choosing to allow a thief of your life and your goals enter your world through an open door.
If you would like to sharpen your skills as a leader and a manager, then why not take advantage of a free 45 minute session which will give you actions you can take straight away to make you more effective. Then go to www.johnmurphyinternational.com/call to schedule that session.
Thanks to Jodey Smith, my podcasting technical genius, who does all the bits I don’t like for me – the editing, the uploading etc. He is a gem and can be contacted at JodeySmith.com.
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