by Jeffrey Levine
Procrastination is one of the great challenges we all face constantly that state of limbo where we keep meaning to do something but never seem to get around to it.
And, as we ve all found out the hard way, how we get things done can often make or break our business.
So how can you solve this for yourself?
I think the Yoda model works. You know, Yoda from The Empire Strikes Back. He said: “There is no try, there is only do, and not do.”
If we look at procrastination through Yoda s eyes, there IS no procrastination. There is only “doing, and not doing.”
But, if we re honest with ourselves, we re often attempting to fool ourselves. To convince ourselves that we really DO mean to do the task. When the truth is – we re just “not doing.”
When we say we re procrastinating getting started on our new exercise program, we re just not exercising. When we say we re procrastinating getting our accounting books caught up, in fact, we re just not doing it.
To end procrastination once and for all, try these 2 steps:
STEP ONE: Remove the word procrastination from your vocabulary, and replace it with the following two statements:
1. I am choosing not to .
2. As a result of that choice, I am choosing .
Sentence #1 is the task you re avoiding.
Sentence #2 is the result.
I am choosing not to exercise. As a result of that choice, I am choosing a less healthy lifestyle.
I am choosing not to update my Quickbooks. As a result of that choice, I am choosing to stay uncertain about my finances.
I am choosing not to focus on marketing my business. As a result of that choice, I am choosing to believe that business will just show up on its own.
Making this shift in your thinking helps you get clarity about your choices and the results those choices get you. As long as we fool ourselves into thinking that we re procrastinating, we stay in limbo, and no progress gets made.
STEP TWO: Make a more powerful choice. A small one something that s easy to do, something that you can do this very moment, and quickly. For example:
1. Instead of Exercise, try just getting up and taking a walk.
2. Instead of Updating my Quickbooks pick one thing to do, like Finding my bank statement and putting it on my desk, or entering my credit card statement into Quickbooks.
3. Instead of Marketing make three phone calls.
When you procrastinate, you are choosing to make something NOT happen, which I know sounds kind of funny. You can end procrastination by getting clear about what you are not doing, and the result of that choice, and then choosing a small action to take.
Clarity then action.
So try these two simple steps and let me know what happens.
To get more help from Jeffrey, visit him at ClarityandAction.com – you’ll see free information to solve work issues and grow your business – and you can reach him directly for private coaching.