William James said, “Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task.” Does this sound familiar? Let’s imagine that you receive a project at work that is due in two weeks. Because you have done this type of project before, you already know that it will take about three days to complete. Do you start prepping right away? Are you gathering information from your resources now, because you might realize that other responsibilities will surface before the due date? Are you thinking that some of the people you’ll need to talk to might be unavailable or necessary supplies could be out of stock? Pondering this exercise further, will you wait until three days before the drop-dead date, suffer through extreme stress and anxiety, wonder aloud why you chose this line of work at all and angrily curse your supervisor for even thinking about assigning you this project? If you selected the latter, please read on…
Seize the Day…Tomorrow!
How would you know if you procrastinate? Take the test. One might think that procrastination is nothing other than laziness, a lack of willpower or loss of ambition. In truth, procrastination is simply a habit that has some specific origin and may have been within us for a good long time. Is there hope? Of course, however, it will require a modification of behavior that will take some effort.
Why do we procrastinate? Sometimes fear, stress, perfectionism or lack of motivation can be the culprit! Procrastination in general may not necessarily be a bad thing. If it starts to impede normal functioning, one might need to take a different look. If there is suspicion that this might be the case, discovery and understanding of what creates the procrastination would be advisable. Thinking through the cause of the malady will assist in determining the action necessary to combat it. When does it occur, how do you feel, what eventually gets you through it, and so on. If all else fails, take the simple approach.
Time for a Change of Habit?
Is the term “work-life balance” an oxymoron? There are those that would suggest that it doesn’t have to be. A person might utilize some additional planning skills and strive to be more forward-thinking in order to create a better balance of work, play and rest. Researchers state that most Americans spend more time planning their vacations then they do planning other parts of their lives. Imagine spending a month deciding the content of a weekend trip to Orlando, while selecting the entirety of your retirement portfolio within two hours! Scary! When you assemble your plans for the upcoming year, do you plan your time off first? Not only will it likely guarantee that you will take your vacations, it allows you to have that wonderful time to look forward to throughout the year.
While at work and to remain productive and focused, consider your workspace. Is it relaxing and conducive to being creative, or is it cluttered and stressful? There are those that start with nothing on their desks, similar to an artist and a blank canvas. Adding pictures of loved ones, plants and less extreme lighting are ways to help improve concentration. Additionally, playing soft music may aid in establishing a more productive work environment. For other suggestions, turn to “Relaxing Your Workspace.”
Giving yourself enough rest is necessary to fight the war on procrastination, along with proper diet and exercise. No matter how well your mind is prepared, if you are unable to perform physically, you will only realize minimal success. In some circumstances, poor time-management skills can also be a cause of procrastination. Good personal productivity is always a benefit to maximize goal attainment. For assistance in this area, go here.
As the old joke goes, “How do you eat an elephant?” “One bite at a time.” Large projects (and sometimes, even smaller ones) create much stress based on their size or complexity in our mind’s eye. Many times, these seemingly overwhelming tasks are easily dispatched by viewing them as many smaller projects and attacking them in that fashion.
If all else fails, enjoy the words of Vincent T. Foss, “One of the greatest labor-saving inventions of today is tomorrow.”
With that, friends, I’ll leave you with this;
You’ve got to SEEpositive to BE positive!
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