How to avoid procrastination

Let’s face it, procrastination has affected us all at one point or another . No matter how much you try to be punctual and productive, once in a while you’ll end up delaying your tasks for later. Chances are, you are procrastinating right now. (Is there something more important you’re supposed to be doing?) As a student, procrastination is a daily occurrence for me. As much as I try to finish up my work, the lies of “just one more episode” or “just one more chapter” always win. According to research, the reason we procrastinate is due to our brains being overwhelmed with conflicting emotions, and struggling to prioritise the task at hand. We fear we might fail. So we just don’t pick up our tasks at all, and convince ourselves we’ll do better tomorrow. Some days we’re just feeling down, and might not feel at our best. Occasionally, a day or two’s rest is totally fine. However, if you find yourself putting off your tasks every day, then here are a few ways to avoid procrastination.

Create a list
If we write down our goals we are much more likely to achieve them. So trying creating a list of all the important things you need to do throughout the day, and put it somewhere you can see it. Chances are, if you can see your goals, then you’ll be more motivated to go through them. Start of with small goals; don’t write down too many of them at one time. Be mindful that a day only has 24 hours, and you can only do a limited number of things in a day, so don’t stress yourself out trying to do a lot at one time.

Remove the distraction
Lets face it, it has become a lot easier for us to procrastinate. Our tendency to procrastinate only increases if we have simpler access to Netflix or social media. The best way to combat this is to take measures to remove said distractions. Delete the applications on which you waste your time on, set a screen time limit or just put your devices in a different room. That way you can focus on the important task at hand, and avoid procrastination.

Break down the task into smaller parts
If a task seems massive to you, try breaking it down into smaller doable parts. If you’re trying to study for a test, then divide the chapter into smaller sub sections, and take a break after doing each one of them. Once your momentum starts building up, then you’ll find yourself not needing to take any breaks and finishing the task as soon as possible.

Reward yourself
It is proven we’ll convince ourselves that a chore is worth it if we’re rewarded for it. So reward yourself for any goal that you accomplish. It doesn’t have to a big, expensive reward (although it can be). Sometimes the smallest of things can provide us a lot of joy. Try rewarding yourself with a candy bar, 15 extra minutes for reading or an extra episode of your favourite show.

If it’s a small task, do it right away
Often times it is the small tasks that pile up and prove stressful later on. If a task takes less than 10 minutes, then do it right away, so that you can focus on your major goals without any worry.