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How to deal with Procrastination

Procrastination by its very nature is the chasm between what we want to do and actually what we do. Procrastination is not laziness. It requires a great deal of energy to desire something then fight yourself to follow through with it.

There are two causes of procrastination. The first is that we don’t really want to do it enough. The second is that the task involved is so immense that we become overwhelmed to the point of paralysis. Let me give you an example. You would like to study for a difficult course.

Ask yourself How much do you need that qualification. If you really want it you start to look at what is required. That is scary. The fear of the amount of study and the agony of having to learn loads of complex stuff can put you off.

I used to find this when studying for exams. My problem was the text book. I would start to look through the book and focus on all the stuff I didn’t know and soon became overwhelmed by the amount I needed to learn.

In Mathematics this was very relevant. I went form the worst grade to the top grade in one year simply by ditching the textbook. Sounds odd doesn’t it. I am not saying you should throw away your books but think about how you process information and how you can find an alternative study technique.

The trick I have discovered is to break down your study into small components. On learning a part for a play I became overwhelmed with the number of lines I had. I used this same technique of adding up the number of days and dividing the number of lines by that number and doing no more.

This method should be time restrained and can be useful for any activity. When you go to bed you might make a list of all the tasks the next day. In the morning subdivide those tasks into a series of small groups. Put a time against each group. For example By 9.00 Am I will have gotten up, had breakfast, showered and looked at my emails. At nine make another list By I will have done my two mile walk and have made three business phone calls. Try to do the quick easy things first as it gives you confidence for the harder things.

Some days I have seven mini lists completed each one time framed. By doing this I get at least 75 % more completed in the day.

Peter Bull.

Published inIdeas Worth Consideration.