This week we continue the theme of Time Management (and the secrets to getting more done). Last week I talked about the importance of you ‘Why’s’. When you remember why you want to get something done and the effect it will have on your happiness, you are more motivated to get it all done.
So why do we still find it difficult to complete the tasks we set ourselves that we know will lead to our happiness? It’s because we all have bad habits. I’m not talking about biting your nails or putting your hair in your mouth. I’m talking about procrastination. Shona Garner, who offers a Coaching Service in Time Management and increasing managerial success, has identified 5 barriers which prevent us from getting things done
We get complacent.
We might not be feeling very confident or maybe just a bit lazy but this stops us from immediately completing a task. This is a small and obvious habit, but one which can be detrimental to our productivity.
We avoid discomfort.
Well, duh. Why would we want to put ourselves in uncomfortable situations? Asking the landlord awkward questions about deposits is much more pleasant when you don’t actually ask anything at all. However, not doing something on your list because it isn’t nice will probably end up with you being in a much more uncomfortable/stressful situation by the end of it (like losing your deposit because you were too worried to ask about it).
We fear failure.
No one can be blamed for this one. Isn’t it just easier not to start a task than risk failing at it? A classic fight or flight response. Do you tackle the task or back away? It’s important to remember that tackling and failing is always better than not trying at all.
We use our emotions against us.
Had a bad day? Feeling stressed? I guarantee that ticking an item off of your to-do list will make you feel better, regardless of what type of day you are having. It will make you feel like you have achieved something and will also put you one step closer to happiness.
We do stuff for the sake of doing stuff.
‘Oh, I’ll just colour code everything and design the most beautiful revision timetable ever!’ – have you ever been tempted by this option? I know I have. We create an illusion for ourselves, thinking we are getting things done, when really we are not doing anything constructive. Planning your time is a great idea but colour coding, colouring in and redoing a whole timetable because of one mistake is not the best use of your time.
So what have you been putting off recently? Can you identify any of the above as being responsible for your procrastination? Recognise your bad habits and get used to fighting against them. You will up your productivity and be a happier person for it!
(All credit goes to Shona Garner Coaching Services www.increasingmanagerialsuccess.com)