Time Management or How to Cure Procrastination
We all know that time management is important if you’re serious about productivity and efficiency at work. One of the biggest hurdles to effective personal performance has always been procrastination – those moments when you unintentionally find ways to stop what really needs to be done.
3 Things That Cause Procrastination
- You know you have something important to do but you just want to do another, more pleasing task first.
- You haven’t organised yourself properly and fail to achieve what you want.
- The task you have looks way too big and you’re inclined to put it off until you are in the right frame of mind.
We’ve all been there, whether working on the shop floor or as a manager. Even bosses can fall victim. It’s easy to fall victim of procrastination but, fortunately, there are ways to get out of it.
Here are our top tips for making sure your time management stays on track:
Is It Your Job?
This is something that managers regularly suffer from – they end up doing many jobs which could be easily given to someone in their team. The art of delegation is important in management and you shouldn’t feel you have to do everything.
Visualise the Job as Finished
It doesn’t have to be large task or big project. It might be as simple as phoning an irate customer who needs a call back from the manager. Try to visualise how it will look at the end and put a big, positive spin on it.
Don’t Think, Do It
Starting is half the problem with procrastination. If you can get into the habit of just starting without thinking, then you are more likely to get these tasks over and done with.
Break It Down
Sometimes, it can be the sheer size of the job that is putting you off. In that case, break it down into manageable chunks that don’t seem so imposing. List those smaller jobs and start ticking them off. You’ll be surprised how quickly you get things done.
Count the Cost
Putting something off for a little while may not cost you much. But if you continue to procrastinate, that delay may well affect your other time management. What if another job comes in before you’ve finished this one? Being honest about the cost of delay can spur you into action.
This works for some people but not others. Having a reward at the end of a difficult job will give you something to look forward to. If you lack willpower, however, you can end up taking your treat before the hard yards are done.
Stay Focused on One Thing at a Time
If you have lots of work to do, it can be easy to lose track of the task you really need to get finished. Find some way to keep it in the forefront of your mind as much as possible. That’s why breaking a big job down into smaller tasks and ticking off successes can work so well.
There’s No Such Thing as Perfection
One thing that can really exacerbate procrastination is the idea of perfection. There really is no such thing – set that in your mind and it can stop you getting hung up on the minutia. Get things done and move on.
Manage Your Time Management
Finally, get into the habit of planning your day better. We are often at our liveliest when we start in the morning so set that time aside to do those big, important jobs. Later in the day we can lack a bit of energy, particularly after lunch. Use that time to do smaller tasks such as checking email and catching up with stuff.