5 Creative Ways to Overcome Procrastination

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5 Creative Ways to Overcome ProcrastinationAre you looking for some tips to help you overcome procrastination?

Are you tired of hearing the same old productivity tips over and over again?

Procrastination can rear it’s ugly head when you least expect it.

It can show up in different areas of your life, be it work, school, errands, personal projects, and more.

That’s why it’s such a good idea to be prepared and have several different procrastination-fighting options available to you.

In this post, I offer five unique tips to help you overcome your procrastination and get things done today.

Use one or more of these tips to push past your resistance and get your work done.


Make a list of teeny-tiny tasks.

Does the thought of working on a large task seem less than inviting to you? If so, stop trying to do absolutely everything in one sitting! It’s perfectly okay to break your work up into several teeny-tiny steps. After all, it’s far better to take several small steps forward, than to not move forward at all. Once you start completing and adding up those tiny tasks, you’ll realize you’re well on your way to completing your final task.

Let’s say you need to organize an upcoming birthday party. You’re probably not going to complete every single aspect of your planning in one afternoon. To get started, you could make a list of really simple tasks that, no matter how small they seem, will help you make a dent in your work. How making a list of 10 people to invite to the party? Done. What about selecting a cake flavor for dessert? Done. How about writing down five songs to add to your party playlist? Finished!

The next time you’re feeling overwhelmed by your work, think about how you can break up your current tasks into even smaller tasks. All that’s left to do is work on one small task after another. Simple, right?

Create a reward board game.

If you’re really dragging your feet when it comes to doing your work, why not create a couple of juicy rewards for yourself? You can create a little reward board game that includes a list of tasks, followed by a mini-reward. The idea here is that you do your work for a certain amount of spaces, or tasks, and then claim your little reward. When you have all of your rewards lined up and staring you in the face, it might give you the motivation you need to start working.

Now, keep in mind, these rewards don’t have to break the bank. They can be small rewards that bring a smile to your face or make you feel good. You could schedule a relaxing bath at home, go out for your favorite latte, buy a couple of new songs on iTunes, hold an impromptu dance party, watch an on-demand episode of your latest binge-worthy TV show, hug your pet, or call your best friend on the phone.

Work alongside a work buddy.

Are you motivated to put your back into your work when you’re working alongside a diligent and industrious person? If so, you may want to temporarily work in the same room or area with a friend or acquaintance whom you know will keep you on task. Now, the caveat of this tip is that you must be strict in your selection of a work buddy. Ideally, you should work with someone who is amendable to this type of arrangement, who is 100% serious about doing their work, and seeing that you do the same.

Once you’ve found a work buddy, you can agree upon a specific time and location in which to meet, and come ready and prepared to do your work. Set a timer for as long as you’ve scheduled yourselves to work, and then get to it! When the timer goes off, you can review your progress, make plans for your next work session, and revel in the successful completion of your most recent task.

Find another way to get the work done.

Sometimes the resistance that comes about when you’re working on a project or an assignment is that you don’t particularly care for the prescribed method of getting work done. Sure, you may not like writing, researching, brainstorming, or reading, but that certainly doesn’t mean you can’t get the job done. In cases like this, it may bode well for you to complete the task at hand by using an alternative work method.

What are some alternative work options that would make the task at hand just a little less stressful, annoying, or frustrating? You are only limited by your imagination. Here’s a couple of ideas to get you thinking…

If you dislike brainstorming on your own without any prompts: try doodling a few images, pick a couple of words out from the dictionary so you can play a word-association game, or cut out colors or images from magazines.

If you’re planning recipes for a menu but get turned off by reading cookbooks: watch a cooking show or video on YouTube, visit a new food blog, or hop on to Pinterest for some meal inspiration.

If you don’t like reading: see if the book or text is available as an audiobook, or use your computer or other digital device to select the audio narration function.

If you don’t care to write: try recording your thoughts into a digital recorder or note taker and have the device translate it to text for you.

Read the directions.

Sometimes, the easiest thing you can do when it comes to doing your work is to simply read the directions. It’s a convenient way to set the foundation and tone of your work, as well as reinforce basic concepts, safety issues, and practical concerns. In essence, you are taking the time you need to set yourself up for success. And isn’t that a step in the right direction?

Okay, so how can you “read the directions” for your work? You could review the ingredients and instructions for a new recipe, review an appliance set-up manual, read the assembly instructions for a piece of furniture, or, you guessed it, read the instructions or guidelines that came along with your project, assignment, or problem set.

Likewise, you could watch a video, read a tutorial, or ask someone for their personal thoughts or professional experience with the task at hand. It all counts towards being more informed about the work you’re going to perform.

How about you? What methods do you use to beat procrastination? Which of the methods above do you think will work well in one of your more recent projects? Join the conversation and leave a comment below!

Follow Rashelle:
Rashelle Isip is a New York City-based professional organizer and productivity consultant who helps people get organized so they can stress less, have more fun, and be happier at home. Her work has been featured in Good Housekeeping, Fast Company, Cosmopolitan, The Washington Post, Business Insider, and The Atlantic. Get access to her free guide, 10 Simple Ways to Make Your To-Do Lists More Effective, by clicking here.
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