When you’re facing a mountain of tasks, or back-to-back pages of a long to-do list, it can be challenging to get started – when it’s easier to just procrastinate.
Procrastination ruins your productivity and will in fact only cause you more stress as your tasks pile up on top of the other.
We’ve rounded up 10 ways to beat procrastination:
1. Prioritize one task each day
Productivity experts recommend writing down clear goals for the day each morning, starting with the tasks that cause you the most stress, and then asking the question, “If this were the only thing I accomplished today, would I be satisfied with my day?” Whatever you pick, that task should be your top priority for the day.
2. Eliminate interruptions
Make sure you have a few hours every day to pump out work uninterrupted – no emails, no calls, no chatting with coworkers. You will get a lot more done and be more less likely to procrastinate if you allow yourself to become fully absorbed in a task with an undivided attention.
3. Shorten email writing
Instead of writing long, verbose emails, try using quick bullet points. Just be careful you’re still getting your point across clearly.
4. Treat yourself
Create rewards for each goal you cross out your list, even if it’s as simple as grabbing a cone of ice cream after you’ve finished a project.
5. Break down large projects
Large tasks can be overwhelming and are the most tempting to put off. To fight this, break down larger projects into smaller parts and tackle them one at a time.
6. Find your peak time of day
Determine which point of the day you are most alert and productive, and block it out distraction-free. These “productivity pockets” will help you maximize the way you use your time. Do the most difficult tasks or those that need the most focus during your day’s “productivity pockets” so you can get them done more efficiently without the need to put them off for later.
7. Keep yourself accountable
Listing down your goals and setting deadlines are helpful, but sharing your task list with another person or a team will give you that extra layer of accountability to make sure you meet those deadlines.
8. Take advantage of mobile apps
There are tons of productivity apps in the market to help give you the extra push you need to maximize your productivity and kick off the habit of procrastination. Check out the best productivity apps for girlbosses and supermoms here.
9. Take short breaks
There is a technique called the Pomodoro technique, where you work for 25 minutes straight and then take a 3 to 5 minute break to allow your brain to relax and recharge. Try it out and see how it works in beating procrastination.
10. Start a “done list”
At the end of every day, list down all the tasks you’ve accomplished and relish the sense of accomplishment you’ll feel from an efficient workday. This will give you the extra motivation to fight procrastination and also help you identify areas in your workflow that you can improve to get more tasks done.