Procrastinate at your peril – it can seriously damage your health!
As the new year approaches, you could be forgiven for delaying starting anything new now, but you can give yourself a head start for 2018 by starting to understand what it is that causes you to procrastinate in the first place. As a consultant, you have more opportunity than most to reinvent yourself, as most people won’t know you too well so you can be whoever you want to be.
In this blog we are having a bit of a change – we have created a worksheet for you to work through about yourself to understand why you might put things off. We are encouraging you to reflect and be absolutely honest with yourself.
Q1. Understand why you procrastinate: Try and understand the root cause of your hesitation. Whether it’s boredom (completing a tax form), too difficult to maintain (losing weight), too complicated – what’s your reason? In your field, many of you will be perfectionists – this can really get in the way of getting on with it. Do you know what ‘good enough’ looks like?
Q2. Face your fears: are you afraid? Fear of failure is a big barrier – we all want to be the best we can be and doing something we are unsure of can reveal that we weren’t exactly who we said we were. (Psst I have a secret for you – we all fall into that trap!) Talk it through with a ‘listener’, get to the bottom of it and then…
Q3. Set yourself a goal to achieve it. A clear goal, write it down, set a date to achieve it, be clear on what success looks like. Check it – is it realistic, will it matter if you don’t do it, who will it matter to? Is it something that you can control? (If it isn’t, the gate is open to leading you to procrastinate further).
Q4. Break the goal down into baby steps. These should be steps that you can achieve without the help of anyone else if possible. Ask for help if you need it.
Q5. Is your workspace productive? Is there room to do what you need to do and have you set the time aside to do things properly? Are you hot / cold / hungry/ tired? Make it work.
Q6. Do you get on your own nerves with your failure to get on with it? Try visualisation. For this you need to look into the future and see what life is like for you and those around you when you have done what you are avoiding. Have a go – do you like what you see?
Make it happen – sit down and work through these points and you will have a much clearer picture at the end than you do right now!
Penny Whitelock FinstLM
Director at www.crystalclearbusinesssolutions.co.uk