Can’t seem to figure out how to get yourself to stop procrastinating on all your creative projects? Oftentimes, procrastination stems from the deep-seated fear that we are “not good enough”.
To that we say: NOT TODAY, SATAN.
Before we dive into some ways to keep your procrastination to a minimum, it’s important to note that your productivity does not define you. In no way are we promoting that you need to be productive 24/7 to be a valuable member of society. In fact, we recommend reading this article by social psychologist Devon Price about how laziness actually does not exist.
If you think your procrastination might be mental illness related, try checking out our blog post on dealing with mental illness during a pandemic before you dive into the methods below.
Here are a few tips for starting to tackle all your shilly-shallying shenanigans:
- Start by starting. Look, we know how hard it is sometimes to just even begin a task. Oftentimes, all it requires is just taking the first step. Do you ever put off a task for eternity, only to eventually do it and see how quick and painless it was? If your task is something that requires a little more of a substantial effort, try breaking it down into smaller, more manageable tasks. Start with setting a goal to complete one sub-task per day. This gives yourself a sense of accomplishment and eases “productivity guilt”. Sometimes, once you get the ball rolling, you may even find you are able to tackle more than your given task for the day (which, can honestly make you feel like a real-life superhero).
- Create for 5 minutes. If you are looking for a way to get yourself to start that painting/that book/that song/that poem you keep putting off again and again – the easiest way to curb procrastination is just by getting yourself to create anything for just 5 minutes. It doesn’t have to be the most amazing thing you’ve ever made, so take that pressure off of yourself. Just sit down (or stand up, if that’s how you work best) and create something to get yourself in the zone. More often than not, once you start going for at least five minutes, you are able to keep that momentum going. Don’t be hard on yourself if you can only bring yourself to create for 5 minutes though – that’s 5 minutes of productivity right there. 5 minutes of creating a day is better than no minutes. Be proud of yourself – no matter how “little” your achievement might seem. (Spoiler alert: no achievements are too small).
- Get rid of distractions! Seriously, put down your phone. Lock it in the other room. Get rid of anything and everything. Do what you need to do to focus. Feel free to check out our super handy blog post on apps that can help minimize your distractions here.
- Designate a space solely for work. We all fall victim to wanting to work in our bed. Especially during quarantine, it’s so easy to just grab our laptop and snuggle under our blankets and work from home that way. However, designating a specific space for you to buckle down and tackle your to-do list (that’s not your bed) will actually help boost productivity and minimize procrastination by training your mind to get ready to work once you are in that designated space.