With big deadlines looming and stress accumulating, it can be easy to fall into the trap of procrastination. Instead of working, you spend time on social media or browse the internet for the latest recipes and cat videos. We’ve all been there.
But how can you fight the urge to procrastinate and get back to work? After all, even if you manage to get the work done, procrastination can cause extra stress or make you unable to turn in your best work, especially if you feel rushed and out of time. The good news is that there are simple steps that you can follow to eliminate procrastination from your life. Here are five ways to stop procrastinating and get back to your work.
Go to a Designated Work Area
Working in front of your TV at home or around talkative colleagues at work is a surefire way to succumb to the urges of procrastination. If you want to stay productive, you need to place yourself in an environment that allows you to stay focused on your work. In most cases, this will be your own office, but if you do not have one, find a place to designate as a work area. If you have a productive area for work, you become separated from the social parts of your life, allowing your mind to focus on the tasks at hand.
Once you’re in your workspace, it is important to eliminate remaining distractions. When you go to your work area, take only what is necessary and leave behind things that can easily derail your train of thought. If you are prone to picking up your phone to play games or check Facebook, leave it in another room. Don’t facilitate your urge to procrastinate by placing the phone next to your keyboard and in plain sight.
Additionally, make sure your friends and family know your work schedule. If they are constantly contacting you throughout the day, it can be hard to stay on track and finish your work without distractions.
Break Your Work Down
If a specific assignment or project seems too large to complete, break it down into smaller, more manageable steps. It’s a lot easier to stop procrastinating if you have a specific item in mind than if you are thinking about the project as a whole. If you need to brainstorm new ideas for a product, focus first on listing needs or resources instead of thinking about the finished product.
Have a timeline for when you want to accomplish certain tasks of the project. Not only does this force you to plan and manage your time, but it gives you smaller things to work towards rather than the final deadline, which probably seems far away, especially near the beginning of the project. When you create closer deadlines and goals for yourself, you’ll have less time to get distracted and lose focus. Write down your goals and tell your friends so that you can hold yourself accountable.
If your procrastination stems from being uninspired, go find your inspiration. Surround yourself with hard-working and resilient individuals. Simply being around productive and motivated people can inspire you to work harder or get started on achieving your next goal. Write motivating quotes on sticky notes and post them around your office, and read inspiring blogs online. Surround yourself with inspiration of all kinds to stay focused, motivated, and productive.
Even when you are low on motivation or energy, simply sitting down and starting the task is the best way to combat procrastination. The next time that you feel the urge of procrastination, use these tips to get you back on track and working towards the completion of your projects and assignments.