May 9, 2023
Crushing Procrastination: Practical Strategies to Overcome It

Welcome back to our blog, "Crushing Procrastination: Practical Strategies to Overcome It". Today, we're going to work together to tackle one of the most common obstacles to productivity: procrastination. I'm excited to share with you some actionable tips and tricks to help you overcome procrastination and get things done. In this Mindset Mastery Class, we'll dive into some of the underlying reasons why we procrastinate and discuss strategies to make the process more manageable. Whether you're someone who struggles with procrastination or just looking to optimize your productivity, this class is for you. 

While there's no magic trick to crush procrastination, we'll work together to develop effective techniques that work for you. If you want to learn more about the reasons behind procrastination, make sure to listen to the 'How To Stop Procrastinating No Matter What' podcast. Additionally, if any of the reasons we discuss resonate with you, go ahead and leave a review after listening. Your feedback will help our podcast reach more people who may benefit from it. So, let's get started on crushing procrastination with practical strategies that you can implement right away.

(To access the free training video on this topic and future ones, sign up here.)

Why We Procrastinate: Understanding the Reasons

Procrastination is a common experience that most of us have encountered at some point in our lives. However, understanding the reasons behind our procrastination can be challenging. In this blog post, we'll explore some of the common reasons why we procrastinate and how we can overcome them.

Habitual Procrastination

One of the reasons why we procrastinate is because procrastination can become a habit. When we have a task that we don't care about, we put it off until the last minute, and when our back is against the wall, we get it done. This creates a pattern of behavior where we wait until the last minute to take action, even when it's not necessary. To overcome this pattern, we can try to create a sense of urgency, even if it's artificial, to motivate us to take action sooner rather than later.

Lack of Clarity

Another common reason for procrastination is a lack of clarity. When we have too many choices or options, it can be challenging to make a decision and take action. Creating constraints, such as time limits or limited options, can help us to narrow down our choices and get more clear on what we want. This can help us to overcome our indecisiveness and take action towards our goals.

Going After Lesser Goals

Sometimes, we procrastinate by going after lesser goals instead of focusing on our bigger goals. This can happen when we spend time on menial tasks or things that don't contribute to our bigger picture. To overcome this, we can set aside specific times for these tasks and limit the amount of time we spend on them. This way, we can still get them done without taking away from our bigger goals.

(To access the free training video on this topic and future ones, sign up here.)

Fear of the Unknown

Fear of the unknown can be one of the biggest reasons why we procrastinate. When we don't know what the outcome will be, we may avoid taking action altogether. To overcome this fear, we can focus on taking small steps towards our goal, rather than worrying about the final outcome. We can also remind ourselves that failure is a part of the learning process and that taking action, even if it doesn't lead to the desired outcome, is still progress towards our goal.

Lack of Belief

When we lack belief in ourselves or our ability to achieve our goals, we may procrastinate out of a sense of doom and gloom. To overcome this, we can focus on evidence to the contrary of our belief and remind ourselves that others have achieved what we want to achieve. We can also break down our goals into smaller, achievable steps and celebrate our progress along the way.

Understanding the reasons behind our procrastination can help us to overcome it and take action towards our goals. While it's not always necessary to know why we're procrastinating, gaining insight into our behavior can be useful. By creating constraints, focusing on our bigger goals, and taking small steps towards our goals, we can overcome procrastination and achieve the success we desire.

Another Way to Shift Doom and Gloom Beliefs: Taking Smaller Steps

When we're feeling overwhelmed or stuck, it's easy to get caught up in a doom and gloom mentality. We may feel like we're not making progress, or that we're never going to get to where we want to be. But instead of succumbing to these negative beliefs, there are small steps we can take to shift our mindset and move forward in a positive direction.

One such step is simply reaching out to a prospect or client with a follow-up message. It doesn't have to be anything elaborate, just a quick "Hey, how you doing?" can often yield positive results. The recipient may reply with enthusiasm, sparking a renewed sense of motivation and inspiration.

In those moments when we feel like we're not making progress, it can be helpful to zoom in a little bit and focus on how we can make the task at hand easier. This might mean breaking it down into smaller steps or finding a way to work that aligns with our preferences.

Preferences are a crucial factor in any undertaking, yet they often go overlooked in business, personal development, and mindset advice. If you dislike sales calls, for example, you could find ways to make them more palatable to you. Perhaps you could open the call by acknowledging your discomfort and focusing on the prospect's needs instead of your own.

(To access the free training video on this topic and future ones, sign up here.)

The key is to take something you don't like and find a way to make it more enjoyable or aligned with your preferences. We have the power to do this, and it's important to remember that our preferences are valid and worthy of consideration.

Another approach is to evaluate opportunities using the "hell yes or no" rule, as coined by mentor Dan Nicholson. If something isn't a "hell yes" for you, consider whether you can make it into one. Is there a way to modify the opportunity to better align with your preferences or needs? If so, you may be able to turn a "no" into a "hell yes."

By taking these small steps, we can begin to chip away at our doom and gloom beliefs and move forward in a more positive direction. It's important to remember that progress doesn't always come in leaps and bounds – sometimes, it's the smallest steps that make the biggest difference.

And Ultimately We Can All Still Procrastinate. It's Fine. Just Do It for Less Time.

Let's face it, procrastination is a natural part of life. We all do it, and that's okay. The key is to do it for less time. Instead of putting things off for days or weeks, try to cut that time down to hours, or even minutes. By doing this, you'll avoid the guilt and shame that comes with prolonged procrastination.

Procrastination Can Be Scary, But It Doesn't Have To Be.

Sometimes we procrastinate because we're afraid of the unknown. We don't know what the outcome will be, so we put it off. But the longer we procrastinate, the more anxiety and stress we create for ourselves. So, instead of avoiding the task altogether, try to face your fears head-on. And remember, the longer you procrastinate, the scarier the task becomes.

Let's Procrastinate on Self-Doubt.

Self-doubt is another form of procrastination. We put off doing things because we don't believe in ourselves or feel we're not ready. But what if we procrastinated on self-doubt instead? What if we focused on the things we do well and the positive aspects of our lives? By shifting our focus, we can reduce the amount of time we spend procrastinating on self-doubt and increase the time we spend being productive.

(To access the free training video on this topic and future ones, sign up here.)

Listen to the Full Podcast on Procrastination.

If you're struggling with procrastination, know that you're not alone. There are many resources available to help you overcome this common challenge. One great resource is the "How to Stop Procrastinating No Matter What" podcast. It's packed with scientific studies, stories, and practical tips to help you overcome procrastination. But remember, don't use the podcast as an excuse to procrastinate. Listen to it during your downtime, when you're taking a walk or doing something else.

Procrastination is a natural part of life. But by doing it for less time and focusing on the positive, we can reduce the stress and anxiety that comes with procrastination. So, the next time you catch yourself procrastinating, try to take a deep breath, refocus, and get back on track. You'll be surprised at how much you can accomplish when you're not weighed down by procrastination.

How to Stop Procrastinating: The Shot Clock Exercise

Are you tired of procrastinating and not getting things done? Do you wish you could magically become a productive and efficient person? Well, while there may not be a magic wand to wave, there is a simple exercise that can help you stop procrastinating and start taking action.

Introducing the Shot Clock Exercise. Inspired by the time constraints in basketball, this exercise challenges you to set a timer for a short amount of time, say 10 or 15 minutes, and focus on completing a task within that time frame. Just like basketball players have to shoot the ball before the shot clock runs out, you have to complete your task before the timer goes off.

This exercise is designed to help you overcome the paralysis of analysis and just take action. It's a way to break through the mental barriers that keep you from getting started, and to help you build momentum towards your goals.

But don't worry, you don't have to be a basketball expert to benefit from this exercise. The Shot Clock Exercise is easy to do, and you can customize it to fit your own needs and preferences.

The exercise is broken down into different categories and prompts, and on pages three and four of the worksheet, you'll find ideas and examples to help you get started. However, before you dive into those, take some time to brainstorm your own ideas. What are some tasks or goals that you've been putting off? What can you realistically accomplish in a short amount of time? Let your own brain guide you in coming up with tasks that are most important to you.

(To access the free training video on this topic and future ones, sign up here.)

Remember, the goal of this exercise is not to complete everything on your to-do list in one go. It's about taking small, manageable steps towards your goals and building momentum. And just like Michael Jordan didn't let the fear of missing a shot stop him from taking the ball, don't let the fear of not completing everything on your list stop you from taking action.

So give the Shot Clock Exercise a try and see how it can help you stop procrastinating and start taking action towards your goals. The worksheet is fillable online, or you can print it out if you prefer to handwrite. And you can reuse it anytime you need to get out of a funk and get things done.

How to Use the Shot Clock Exercise Sheet to Boost Your Productivity

The Shot Clock Exercise Sheet is a powerful tool to boost your productivity, but it's even more effective when you use it in the right way. Here are some tips on how to make the most of this sheet and get the most out of your time.

  1. Fill Out the Sheet on Your Computer

The Shot Clock Exercise Sheet should be fillable right on the computer. Of course, you're always welcome to print it out if you really love handwriting, it's an option for you. By filling out the sheet on your computer, you can save it and reuse it anytime you need to get out of a funk.

  1. Use Different Categories and Prompts

The sheet is divided into different categories and prompts, such as Vision, Work, Leadership, Thought Leadership, Creative, Health, Mindframe, and Relationship. Each category has its own set of prompts to help you focus on specific areas of your life and work. Take advantage of these prompts and use them to spark your creativity and focus.

  1. Brainstorm Your Own Ideas

Before you look at the ideas and examples provided on pages three and four, try to come up with your own ideas. What do you really need to focus on right now? What are the big picture items that will move the needle forward in your life and work? Write them down and see what you come up with on your own. Your ideas might be more useful to you because it's your brain saying, "Hey, you know, we really need to do this."

  1. Set a Time Limit

Set a time limit for each prompt, such as 20 minutes. This will help you focus and prevent you from getting stuck in analysis paralysis. See how fast that time flies by and watch your productivity soar.

By using the Shot Clock Exercise Sheet in this way, you can make the most of your time and achieve your goals with greater ease and productivity. So why not give it a try today?

In conclusion, taking action is the key to overcoming procrastination. Use the tool we discussed today to identify specific actions you will take within the next 24 hours or even 24 minutes. Don't forget to come back and log your results, celebrate the little wins and take note of any resistance you encounter. Accountability is crucial, so feel free to reach out for support and share your progress with others. Remember, encountering resistance is a gift that presents an opportunity for growth and learning. Thank you all for your time and attention today, I appreciate each and every one of you. Let's continue the conversation and support each other in our Facebook group. Same time, same place next week. Have a great day everyone!

(To access the free training video on this topic and future ones, sign up here.)

Laura Catella | Mindset CoacH | Founder of Diamond Day Mastermind
You might also be interested in these...
Unlocking the Power of Focus: Overcoming ADHD and Thriving in a Distracted World

Join us live every Tuesday at 9:30 AM PT: Join me for an eye-opening discussion on focus, ADHD, and reclaiming your productivity. Don't miss out on this transformative session! In this post, we'll delve into: My personal journey of being diagnosed with ADHD at 34. Discover why I initially doubted the diagnosis and how it finally clicked once I understood the truth. Exploring how distractibility can serve as a coping mechanism for stress and trauma, unraveling its hidden potential. Breaking the misconception of laziness and uncovering the truth behind the "wall of awful." Learn effective strategies to conquer it and kickstart tasks with ease. Tapping into the superpowers of "lack of focus" when harnessed skillfully. Unleash your true potential and embrace the unique strengths it offers. Thriving strategies for those with ADHD or anyone feeling pulled in multiple directions. Gain practical insights to find balance and flourish. This post is not limited to those with ADHD – it's for everyone seeking to enhance focus and productivity. Join us for an empowering discussion that will redefine your relationship with focus and equip you with the tools to thrive in today's fast-paced world.