Fact: 1 in 5 People Procrastinate Their Lives Away; So If You’re One of Them Stop Procrastinating Now!

I’m not making it up – that’s right, 20% of the population struggle with procrastination and would LOVE to stop procrastinating now!

Typically, procrastinators are poorer than everyone else, less healthy than everyone else, less happy than everyone else and more depressed (because of their procrastination) than everyone else!

And if you are an adult sufferer of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), then you’ll likely be one of the 94% of the people with ADHD who suffer from procrastination!

Procrastinators tell themselves lies.

That they are perfectionists who work best under pressure.

That work done at the last-minute is their ‘best’ work.

The truth is last minuted work is often full of mistakes and ‘perfectionism’ is just another excuse for doing nothing!

Procrastinators who can’t stop procrastinating now, inconvenience and annoy other people who love them and/or are depending on them to deliver on productivity.

Personal and professional relationships suffer. Mail doesn’t get opened, bills stack up and penalties are incurred.

Worse, procrastinators KNOW they are procrastinating. They lose their sense of self-worth, punish themselves and feel like they are almost at war with themselves for not getting things done that they really want done!

Even worse, procrastinators rarely have sympathy for OTHER procrastinators who won’t stop procrastinating now. Even though they recognise the behaviour; because they despise it in themselves and they can empathise with the symptoms in someone else, they won’t condone it.

Does this mean that all procrastinators are doomed to have drab, wretched lives if they can’t stop procrastinating now?

Heck no!

Some very famous people have been lifelong procrastinators! Douglas Adams for instance, the author of ‘The Hitchhikers Guide To The Galaxy’ said “I love deadlines – I love the whooshing sound they make as they go by.”

When Adams died at the tragically young age of 49, he was 12 years late on his ‘latest’ book!

So, are you ready to Stop Procrastinating Now?

Because, here’s the good news… procrastination is a behaviour – it is NOT who you are!

ALL behaviours can be changed if you are committed to doing it!

As a life coach I often come across clients who are desperate to stop procrastination now and yes, I’m absolutely guilty of being one myself! So I can certainly empathise if you are one of the 1 in 5 who are!

So, here are my top 5 tips to help you stop procrastinating now!

  1. Give up on being a perfectionist! It’s time consuming, unachievable and it’s a classic excuse for never starting! Take massive IMPERFECT action!! Completion of the task is often wayyy better than perfection of the task
  2. Chunk things down – OVERWHELM is a huge cause of procrastination – so chunk things down into specific, easy to achieve, actionable steps. Focus on completing the steps one at a time – and before you know it… you will reach your ultimate outcome!
  3. Identify the challenge! Whilst you are thinking about the task you are NOT doing – but know it has to be done – ask yourself…”what is it about this that is making me feel so uncomfortable?” – if it’s not that it needs chunking down, it’s likely to be some feeling of emotional uncomfortableness and/or fear that is holding you back.  Just KNOWING what the real challenge is – will help you identify the differences between a real challenge and an irrational fear.  Now you’ve identified it – you NEED to get past it!
  4. Think about the consequences! When you are indulging in short-term pleasurable distracting behaviours that are keeping you from what REALLY matters, you need to be asking yourself questions like;
      1. What is this costing me now and in the future if I don’t do it?
      2. Who am I hurting?
      3. Who am I letting down?
      4. Am I harming myself if I don’t get it done?
      5. What else is this going to cost me?
      6. Where will my life be a year from now, five years from now, ten years from now if I continue to procrastinate!
  5. Where will my life be a year from now, five years from now, ten years from now if I continue to procrastinate!
  6. Get yourself a Pomodoro timer – software or physical. And break your day down into 25 minute bite size pieces! Assign specific projects to blocks of time that you have chunked down into pomodoro 25 minute chunks (25 minutes of focused, non-distracted work followed by a 5 minute energy break and a 20 minute break every 3 or 4 pomodoros).

Now this list is by no means an exhaustive way to stop procrastinating now. However, I bet there are 5 ideas which if you follow them WILL make a positive impact on your life.

Will they ‘cure’ you of procrastination and REALLY stop procrastinating now? In my own experience, there is no single ‘cure’ or magic pill…

You have to WORK at them every day!

Commit to changing your behaviour!

Most of all… focus on number four – the consequences if you DON’T change!

People are motivated by only two things; the pursuit of pleasure or the avoidance of pain. The more PAIN you can associate with procrastination and the more pleasure you can associate with taking action to change your life – the more success you will experience.

If you want further assistance to stop procrastinating now, from time to time I have vacancies for new coaching clients.

Drop me a line if you want to stop procrastinating now and to discuss my availability and fees.

Remember, if you want change in your life….
The Change Begins With YOU!

Robin J Emdon

 

 

 

 

 

Robin J Emdon
Success Coach & Attraction Marketing Professional
Skype: lifemaestro
Email: [email protected]

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Robin J Emdon

Life Coach, Professional Online Marketer & Coffee Snob
Online Marketer - Entrepreneur - Bad Joke Teller - Life Coach - Interweb Addict - Single Dad - Retired Retail Stores Owner - Honest to a fault - Dream Builder - Straight Talking - Works From Home - Student of Philosophy and Psychology - Passionate About Life - All Round Good Guy & Cappuccino Lover.

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Comments

  • Very good article and good advice. It’s like you got into my head. lol

  • We’ve written about procrastination in our book ‘Living a Laptop Lifestyle’, and ask our readers what are their most expensive words. That is, what are the ‘excuses’ that they are making to themselves to avoid taking action or doing something now, rather than tomorrow. So procrastination is one of those expensive words.

    • It most certainly is Greg or Fiona! It most certainly is! And is sooo many ways! Thanks for the comment! 🙂

  • David Verney

    Great post. Thanks for sharing this one. I am a real procrastinator. I need to pick up the phone and make some business calls, but something is stopping me. I guess it’s the worry of rejection. I need to tell myself that not picking up the phone in the first place is rejecting myself.

    • Hi David and thank you for your comment and very honest share. My challenge to you regarding the business calls is to work through the steps I’ve outlined in the article. Pay particular attention to fully engaging with the feelings of ‘loss’ you will experience when asking yourself questions about what it is costing you by NOT making those calls? Lost income, lost self-esteem leading to potentially damaging significant relationships in you life. And think it through… longer term…what will it cost you a year from now? Five years from now? and so on.

      Then compare THOSE feelings with imagined feelings of ‘rejection’ from making those calls!

      By the way… i don’t think you are rejecting yourself when don’t pick up the phone. Something about that statement feels equally disempowering to me. I think you are doing what we all do. You are simply trying to avoid pain (the other primary motivator being – to gain pleasure). In this case, you may not have thought things through. There is clearly MORE pain with NOT making those calls than if you do. It’s just deferred pain!

      So, get your pomodoro timer and decide…how many blocks of 25 minute relentless calling am I going to do this session? Maybe start small… just do 1 block of 25 minutes today and celebrate that you did it! Then do 2 blocks tomorrow and celebrate again! And so on…

      Good luck David! 🙂

  • Antonette Bailey

    Hi, really good article and appreciating work. Thanks For Sharing. Keep up the Good Wor and keep writing the wonderful article like this.

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