...Hello unbreakable focus.
“Those dishes? For sure. I’ll do them later today...", "The Laundry? Of course! I’ll fold those clothes tomorrow...” as you turn and look at the full basket that’s been sitting on your bed for the past two hours. Sound familiar?
These are all pretty common, every day thoughts of procrastination that the average person has. At the time they feel a great idea, even when you have every intention on getting those tasks done but in reality, I think that we can all agree, for the most part, they do no good.
Unfortunately it's not just the little things we put off. "Food prep? Oh ya, I’ll start prepping my meals next Sunday...", "As soon as it gets a little warmer outside, I’m going to start going for walks, maybe even a jog here and there." Meanwhile ", weeks have passed, summer days have come and gone and any plans on food prepping or exercising have gone unmet.
Some of the reasons that we push these tasks to the side are:
-We are afraid that we’ll be successful and need to take on bigger tasks.
-We lack the confidence that we can get the job done.
-We are afraid of what others may think about us.
These are just a few excuses that we try to use as justification for putting things on the back burner. After all, we LOVE comfort and certainty. Unfortunately though, comfort and certainty doesn't always lead to getting things done.
So, how do we tackle procrastination?
1. Get it done right away.
Ask yourself, “How long will this take me?” If the answer is less than 5 minutes, then suck it up and just get it done. Plain and simple. That’s one less thing that will be weighing on your mind before you go to bed. One step closer to some much deserved 'you' time. One step closer to clarity...
2. Set a specific time block for each specific task.
Tell yourself that no mater what happens, I need to give this one thing as much focus as possible for the next (insert time block here). Anything else that comes up is a distraction. The task at hand should be the one and only thing that you devote your full time an attention to. Also, take note of when you feel the need or urge to do something else while you are in the middle of this. Are you hungry? Tired? In pain? Take note and act accordingly for next time. Remember, we are always collecting data.
3. Use any motivational material to keep you at it.
Once you have paused for a second to collect that data just mentioned, go right back to completing what it was that you have time blocked for. Practicing this enhances focus in all things. If necessary, grab that motivation that you have set for yourself. Use this as a trigger to get you back on the right foot. This can be a video, song, visual aid or quote. Play the song that motivates you in the background or print that quote and post it on the wall, somewhere you'll see often to be reminded to be productive.
Focus is one of the most difficult things to master. With consistent practice and application, though, you will be surprised with what you are able to accomplish.