Archive for December, 2009

Is Procrastination getting in the Way of your Destination?

Procrastination most often is one of the show stoppers between us moving forward on those things we should be completing or staying stuck in the “same ole same.”   

Procrastination is common for many of us and according to Pier Steel, a human resources professor at the Univ. of Calgary’s Haskayne School of Business, 95% of us procrastinate  with 15% to 20% being chronic offenders.*  His study also shares that people who procrastinate underperform in every area of their lives from health to finance. What this screams out loud is that because we are all prone to it, we should really beef up our ability to manage through procrastination.

Knowing the end result or negative impact of procrastination helps in our ability to manage this challenge.  Procrastination can result in: missed opportunities, increased stress, poor performance, and wasted time that will delay your progress towards your goals.  It is often rooted in distractions, fear of failure and lack of self confidence.   Sadly, each time you put off tasks, you are strengthening your habits around procrastination. 

Try doing the following in managing procrastination:

1)   Be clear on what it is you are giving up by procrastinating. In many cases, it is your dream job, advanced education and growth opportunities and/or reducing your quality of life.

2)   Eliminate your distractions.  What’s pulling you away from the prioritized tasks?  This may include shifting some of the hours spent on facebook or TV to hours spent on key tasks that are on the path towards your life goals.

3)   Address the “thinking” behind your procrastination at the root.  We are what we think. Are your thoughts getting in the way of your success?

4)   Make a complete list of all of the things you have been procrastinating on.  Commit to completing 1-2 items per week or an appropriate schedule that you can accomplish and stick to like glue to keep things moving.  Set up small celebrations and/or rewards that will keep you encouraged to continue moving forward.

5)   Enlist a coach or friend. Share your list with them and ask them to aid you in staying accountable to your list.

Don’t let procrastination get in the way of your destination.  We become our habits and procrastination is not something we want to become because “procrastinators underperform in every area of their lives.”

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