• Are you overwhelmed with so many things to do that you end up doing the wrong things?
  • Does just thinking about your list make your jaw clench and adrenaline run riot?

Like many of you, I always have an endless To Do list and more work than I can reasonably handle. Or do I?

When I finally write down my list, it never looks so bad. Sure, it’s too long but at least I know what I need to worry about, rather than worrying about the unknown. But still there is a problem.

Procrastination

In fact I should be doing my invoices but instead I’m writing my blog. Ironic, huh. Like many other enormously capable people, I take on too much and set myself high standards. But sometimes I just don’t seem to be able to get on with the important tasks I should be doing. Sound familiar?

So how can we cope with procrastination?

Take great advice from an expert! I love Get-It-Done Guy aka Stever Robbins. He’s a highly successful entrepreneur of 9 start-ups, including FTP software (for the geeks amongst us). He has recently published 9 Steps to Work Less and Do More (on special offer) that pulls together all the best bits from his funny yet insightful podcasts and columns.

Top tips on Procrastination

1) Make things into habits. Turn jobs into habits. The last Friday of the month, I always do my expenses (in my dreams!).
2) Link habits to spaces. When I sit here, I do these tasks. When I’m travelling, time spent waiting to board planes is time to do expenses paperwork, check my calendar or write proposals.
3) Use incentives and pressures (carrots & sticks). If I finish this task by 9.30 a.m. I can treat myself to an expresso but if it’s not done until 10.30, I’ll buy the whole team coffees.
4) Speed date your tasks. Make a short list of the things you are procrastinating doing. Using a timer, spend just 5 minutes on each one. Once you have started a task, it’s easier to get it done. Before you start it’s like a huge tiger but once you’ve started, it becomes a pussy cat.
5) GET ON WITH IT! Sometimes you just have to force yourself to do something. If you are finding that this is getting more frequent, maybe you need to take a few steps back from your life and work out why you’re not your usual capable self. Would a day off or fun event help get your mojo back? But that’s another topic entirely!

Right, now what was I doing? I know, invoices. Maybe I need a tea first or how about tackling that washing……

What works for you? You can leave a comment to share your ideas with other readers.

To read/listen to the tips from the master himself, check out speed dates your tasks and beating procrastination.