Mastering the Art of Procrastination

The art of procrastination is something that I mastered in college. I think everyone who attends college experiences this same phenomenon at some point during their 4-year stint. I was working and schooling, and taking care of life…I worked out my timing so that I was always ready for a test, a final exam, or to turn in a paper…right on time. More often than not, I was doing what needed to be done the night before the test was scheduled or the paper was due. I was always prepared…somehow.

This was a fine, somewhat-productive lifestyle for college, but I soon learned that procrastination was not a responsible way to use my time in the “real world”. When you have a job, a family, and a home to run it does not go very smoothly when you are cutting deadlines too closely and doing things at the last minute.

There needs to be an organization and a flow
to your tasks, schedules, and life.

So, the “art of procrastination” served its purpose for me in college, being that my deadlines were quite often made by the skin of my teeth. Procrastination was something that I was great at and that I truly mastered. The older I became and the more responsibilities I acquired, the less procrastination served me. Now, Mastering the Art of Procrastination” has the opposite meaning for me: It now means that I no longer use it as a crutch to put off things which can and should be done in a timely manner.

I have mastered it, or conquered it, if you will.

This means that I don’t wait until the last minute to take care of the many tasks that need my love and attention. To Master Means: To become proficient in the use of something; having mastery of. It no longer holds me in its clutches. This term has done a total 180 degree turn in my life. Sure, I procrastinate sometimes, but mostly I try to get everything I need to do done way before it will feel urgent or last minute. This is really the healthy way to master the art of procrastination.

So, are you a great procrastinator, as I was in college…or have you mastered procrastination, in that it doesn’t happen very often? If you still struggle with putting things off, here are some tips that I use so I am not rushing at the very last minute to complete something that has a deadline:

  • Keep a calendar and look at least a week ahead in order to complete tasks ahead of time.
    This small step will ensure that you are making great use of your time and money. An example is that you make one trip to the grocery store instead of two or three because you forgot to buy the fruit for the party this Saturday.
  • Keep a color-coded calendar so you know which tasks or appointments are for you personally, for your work, for your children, etc.
    Keeping track of your own schedule is hard enough, but when you add a fistful of children to the mix
    …watch out! Color-coding is a simple visual way to keep it all straight.
  • Make a to-do list at night of all the things you need to take care of the following day.
    This will help you sleep better, knowing that your list is ready for you in the morning. Most people have sleepless nights, because they wake up and start going through all the things they need to remember the following day. Making a list the night before will eliminate this.
  • Put the least desirable task first on your daily list. We always push the most dreaded task to the bottom of the list…and often times it ends up on the next day’s list again and again. Before you know it, that awful task needs to be completed quickly because your time has run out! Complete this chore first, get it out of the way, and enjoy your other less-grueling tasks!


Take Action:
This week and moving forward, let
s implement these four tips so that we can stop procrastinating and truly master it. If you are still letting procrastination master you, add a step at a time…you will conquer it if you keep at it! Go make that list right now, and start tackling the most grueling task…see how fabulous you feel as you check it off that list!

Because Together is Better,

Comments

  1. Top tips πŸ™‚ I myself am a real procrastinator unless it’s something I really want to do in which case I simply can’t wait another second and do it there and then! So an impatient procrastinator, yikes!

    I shall certainly be trying to implement these 4 top tips, many thanks x

  2. Great tips.. i need to make and stick to lists. Takes will power to not procrastinate.

  3. Color coding is a good idea to organize your To Do’s. I do this using my Outlook tasks list, you just need to toggle the color you wish to assign for each category and is very helpful.

  4. I can procrastinate with the best of them!!

  5. love your analytical approach to destroying procrastination!

  6. Your information is so useful!! I make lists and then I forget the lists!

  7. Great tips πŸ™‚ I love the color coding idea, what a great way to get a fast glance at the categories and stuff πŸ™‚

  8. I hate procrastination. it is so stressful. I like to be a planner with flextime. I have my clocks set 1- 15 minutes ahead of time, even reminders for my calander on my phone lol. There are things I have waited on though.

  9. Great article… it really does feel better to just get it done so it is not nagging at me, hanging over my head. Good advice in your 4-tips.

  10. I have to say I relate to you. I used to be the biggest procrastinator and it was until I entered my Master’s program that I finally got it under control.:) Great tips above!

  11. I have to say I work best when I wait until the last minute:) works for me anyways

  12. Gina Manzeck says:

    Great article…and for me..it’s not the day to day every day stuff…it’s the long term, life goal achievements and how to get there- especially when I want it all figured out NOW!!!! Best thing I keep asking and telling myself is..”how do you eat an elephant”…answer: one bite at a time- but I suppose that isn’t the same as procrastination…I believe that is patience, which I am not so good at either.

    Keep spreading the love D~

    xoxo

  13. And I thought procrastination was in my genes! It was certainly apparent in my family. My motto was ” If it wasn’t for the last minute nothing would get done.”

  14. If I wouldn’t make a list of things to do each night I would never get anything done. For me the organization is my biggest thing or maybe I should say I have too many things going on at once. Hard to stay on my list!

  15. OMG, I am so good at Procrastination. I think it’s more of a man thing lol

  16. Daddy G says:

    I WAS going to comment, but I think I’ll put it off till tomorrow :~)

  17. love the photo, The art of procrastination is something I use to master!! until I found out I was self “SABOTAGING”
    my business!! No more I am finally moving forward with my business and seeing results!!

  18. Best way to handle procrastination is to put it off.

  19. I always have a list of projects hiding around my kitchen. I also love crossing items off when I finish them! That is the problem……it is usually last minute. This weeks list…. clean the windows, paint a bathroom, plant a few more plants, get a haircut and tackle a huge pile of ironing!!! My Thursday and Friday will be very busy days! Have a great week.

  20. Fantastic way of putting together this information! Simple to understand and follow. Thanks!

  21. I don’t procrastinate, but this article is still very inspiring

  22. Oh I am such the procrastinator!! Time to go back to basics. What I really struggle with is putting off that dreaded task. This week, I will make a point of getting those things done first!

  23. I am not a procrastinator… i am straight and to the point when a decision needs to be made.

  24. Great message! I must take steps to implement these suggestions! I’ll do that later today…just kidding!

  25. I guess you were reading my mind. I have a paper to write today that I have put off for a while now. Guess no more procrastination. Thanks for the article today.

  26. Very inspiring! Thanks for the pep talk this morning!

  27. This is an area I struggle with. I use list all the time but had not thought about a color coded list. Using colors will definitely help me get more done!
    Thanks for the great article.

  28. Today isn’t over, till tomorrow is planned! I love this statement and i create a list every evening so i can see what i have to do the following day. I’d be lost without my weekly plannner too. πŸ™‚

    • I love that quote, “Today isn’t over until tomorrow is planned!”…great words to live by! I would be lost without my planner also.

Speak Your Mind

*