I know, I know, procrastination is the last thing you want to talk about, especially in the crazy times we're in now. In fact, you may not even realize when you're procrastinating because it's so easy to do! At 21Ninety, we're here to tell you about a few reasons why procrastination exists and what you can do to fight it!
There are some tasks that seem so overwhelming that we may decide to just do it tomorrow. But then, tomorrow becomes the day after that and the day after that and the day after that until, suddenly, you're looking at 49 tasks with a deadline of right now!
Have you ever been in the middle of an utterly mind-numbing task? It's totally reasonable to decide you'll finish it later. After all, there are way better things you could be doing right now instead of typing up article summaries. You're positive you'll remember to do it; you just need a quick break.
Maybe it's not as deep as a fear of failure or feeling unprepared. Maybe it simply slipped your mind that you have a homework assignment due at 11:59 pm. Now it's 11:51, and you're panicking.
Whether you're procrastinating for any of these reasons or for an entirely different one, there is a solution! The first thing you should do is practice a bit of self-compassion. We all have that berating little voice in our head, the one that's overly critical no matter how hard we try. Learning to ignore that voice, or even better, to turn it in a positive direction, is an excellent life skill that can take you far.
The next thing to do is write it down! In this digital age, we have all kinds of apps and alarms at our fingertips, but there's nothing quite like seeing something in your own handwriting. For me, planners have been a lifesaver. Whether a spiral-bound hardcover from your favorite Etsy shop or a notebook you picked up on sale at the grocery store, having a physical list of tasks makes them seem that much more accomplishable.
The final tip is to make sure your tasks are SMART- Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Time-based. Will you be able to write an entire business proposal in half an hour? Maybe not. How about the outline? That's more like it!
Of course, there are several more things that you can do to battle procrastination, but hopefully, these three tips will get you on your way to living a more productive and self-compassionate life!