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Wednesday 14 April 2021

Tips for Avoiding Procrastination & Just Getting Started

As the old saying goes, “procrastination is the thief of time.” For just about everyone, at least some of the time, procrastination rears its ugly head and prevents us from achieving our full potential in our personal lives, in our professional lives, with regards to hobbies, and even in terms of our interpersonal relationships.

When push comes to shove, however, hold-ups, delays, and “obstacles” often have more to do with our mindset than with the practical realities of the situation. If your air conditioning unit has broken down, for example, there is a 24 Hour AC Repair available to get that issue resolved quickly – and yet these sorts of errands often go ignored for a prolonged period of time. Here are a handful of tips for avoiding procrastination and just getting started.

Focus on your breathing for a couple of minutes to get out of your head and back into the present moment 

Procrastination can often be driven to a significant degree by our own thoughts about the task at hand. Often enough, once we actually get started we find that the difficulties we imagined to be so severe are nowhere near as hard to overcome in reality as they were in our own minds, and the dread we might have felt at the idea of sitting down and working often proves to be unfounded.

One of the first things to try when you feel the urge to procrastinate, therefore, is to focus on your breathing for a couple of minutes – and to take deep breaths, as well – in order to bring your awareness back to the present moment and get yourself out of your own head.

 Do a bit of preparation in advance, so that there is minimal resistance to actually getting started

The likelihood that you will be caught up in a spiral of procrastination goes up sharply if there’s a lot of “practical resistance” to getting started on a challenging task. On the other hand, if you’ve done a good deal of preparation in advance, and you can essentially just turn up and get going with minimal hold-ups, it will be much easier to overcome that tendency to procrastinate. “Preparation” will mean different things in different contexts. It might mean leaving your gym bag packed the night before, doing preparatory research for a big project, or tidying up your office desk.

Take active steps to improve your sleep and energy levels

If you are feeling exhausted and are struggling with flagging energy levels, it’s very likely that you will be a lot more prone to procrastination than you would be if you were well-rested and energised. Although it may seem like a bit of a roundabout thing, taking active steps to improve your sleep and energy levels – and to maintain a regular sleep schedule – can work wonders with regards to helping you to get things done in a timely manner.

As a rule of thumb: the more exhausted you feel, the harder it will be to motivate yourself to get started on anything that requires effort.

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