The fact is that most of us procrastinate on something or the other. The bigger fact is that most of us somehow don’t procrastinate when we want to watch extra television, chat non-sense with colleagues at work, sleep-in an extra hour even when we are pressed on time, or when we have to find that additional three hours for the new movie in theaters which everybody has been talking about. I am definitely not saying not to conduct the activities mentioned above (talking non-sense is an exception), but I and am guessing even you might also be wondering right now how is that most of us always find time for such non-productive activities?
Psychologically speaking, somehow our brain picks up unproductive habits faster than productive habits. But numerous studies all over the World also prove that habits can be replaced. If you exactly and completely aren’t proud of where you and your life right now are, you will have to put in more effort with more self-discipline and self-control than what you are right now to kill procrastination. The following five routines will help you do exactly that (only if you have the willingness to):
- Instead of eliminating a habit, replace it. For instance, if you like sipping on that soda after dinner, replace it with a healthy beverage. This ensures that your curb of a liquid is still getting fulfilled, yet you are replacing an unhealthy habit.
- Set a trigger when you are tempted to slip in to your old pattern even after consciously being aware of it. A trigger helps you break the pattern. It may be a clap of hands technique (courtesy the great Zig Ziglar) wherein say, for instance, you are tempted to press that snooze button to ‘not’ get up; it may be playing a song, delegating a sign when you catch yourself procrastinating, or might even just be jumping. The key here is setting some sort of a trigger to break your unproductive pattern of thoughts. By doing so, it creates room for a new pattern.
- Try to change minimum one and maximum three habits in a month. This not only makes your goals realistic, but also achievable filling you with a sense of confidence that you can because the wonderful thing is when you change that one habit, well, you have changed it! You achieved your goal which fuels you with the energy to push at a bigger goal harder. Start small and build.
- Reward yourself when you beat procrastination and do what you planned to do. Tying rewards to your goals will motivate you to keep pushing.
- Last, but not the least, write your goals down and read them every day. Doing so, every day transfers the information from your conscious to sub-conscious mind which helps the cause of acting on your goals which in the process involves killing procrastination. Repeating the all famous Steven Covey principle from his best-selling book ‘7 Habits of Highly Effective People’- ‘Begin With the End in Mind.’