In case you’re not familiar, procrastination is this evil thing where you can’t get any actual work done because you’re too busy putting it off to do stupid things that you don’t need to be doing. Confession: I might be the world’s biggest procrastinator. I am constantly leaving things until the last minute… and then rushing around like a maniac trying to get those things done. In high school, I once put off a 20-page research paper until the night before it was due. The night before! I thought my parents were going to kill me.
Procrastination sucks for a few reasons. It leaves you feeling pressured, stressed and anxious. It affects the quality of your work because when you’re rushing to get something done, you’re much more likely to create silly errors. It also leaves virtually no room for bad luck of any kind. Say you put a paper off until the night before, like I did. What happens if your computer mysteriously breaks? Or your printer stops working? Or you get sick and have to go to the emergency room? The worst part is, stuff like this only happens when you’ve procrastinated.
So, yeah, it’s not ideal. Although I have yet to conquer my procrastination (today I read roughly 10 BuzzFeed articles before I started writing for Gurl, but please don’t tell my boss that), I have learned to live with it in a way that is manageable. So, to help you guys out, here are 8 tips on how to stop procrastinating. You’re welcome.
Remove Distractions By Finding A New PlaceThere are tons of distractions out there that will tempt you to procrastinate, especially when you're working on the computer. Trust me, I battle with it every single day. If you're trying to get work done at home, find a place where you only do work. For me, that's my dining room table. I don't sit there unless I'm eating or working. Once I sit down there with my computer, work comes naturally. But if I get comfy in bed, work doesn't come so naturally. So, pick a spot that is quiet and distraction free - it doesn't even have to be in your house. It can be at the library, somewhere peaceful outside or wherever. Source: ShutterStock
Make A To-Do ListA lot of the time, procrastination is about being disorganized. I know that, for me, to-do lists have helped a tremendous amount. Every morning when I get into work, I make a list of what I need to get done. This keeps you so much more organized, helps remind you of things you might forget about and also leaves you feeling satisfied when you check things off. Ah! Source: ShutterStock
Give Yourself DeadlinesOne of the biggest reasons I procrastinate is because I actually work better under pressure. I don't know why, but I enjoy it. When I have too much time to get stuff done, it bores me - which is why I leave things to the last minute. If you're the same way, try giving yourself deadlines. If you have a paper due in two weeks but you'd like to get it out of the way, sit down one day and say, "okay, I have three hours to get this done and that's it." It may not be a technical real deadline, but it still might give you the feeling of working under pressure. Source: ShutterStock
Give Yourself Timed BreaksSometimes procrastination is about being bored with what you need to get done and just wanting to do something fun. If that's the case, give yourself some timed breaks. Set a schedule of doing homework for one hour, with a half-hour break followed by another hour of work. This will help you break up your time and make things a little easier. But be careful - if they're not timed, it could likely turn into a very long break and before you know it, you're procrastinating again. Source: ShutterStock
Plan Things To Do When You're Done With Your TaskI know this sounds really weird, but another big reason I procrastinate is because I'm always afraid of being bored with nothing to do. I would rather be working quickly to get something done than getting everything done early with hours left of nothing to do. Does that make sense? If it does, then do this: plan stuff you can do once you're task is completed. That way, you won't feel like you're going to be completely bored afterwards. I always do this and it works. Source: ShutterStock
Get Someone To Help YouSometimes we just need other people to give us an extra push. Whenever I have something to do that I know is going to be difficult to get done, I tell my mom about it. She knows how to nag really well (love you, Mom!), which usually makes me do stuff. Or, I ask my boyfriend to convince me. Sometimes I just need other people to tell me to get myself together. Source: ShutterStock
Give Yourself Rewards When You're DoneGive yourself something to look forward to for when you complete your task! Tell yourself that you can ONLY watch those episodes of New Girl if you do your homework first. Or that you can ONLY go get ice cream if you study for an hour. It makes time go by a little faster and will make you work harder. Source: ShutterStock
Just Talk Yourself Into Doing ItAt the end of the day, you may just need to talk yourself into doing whatever it is you're putting off. Sit down and get your head straight! Force yourself to do it, even if you don't want to. Even if you're not enjoying yourself, some stuff just needs to get done. Source: ShutterStock
Do you have problems with procrastination? How do you stop procrastinating? What tips did I miss? Tell me in the comments.