Do you feel like you hit roadblocks when you procrastinate? Are you able to drive through a roadblock, such as one posed by these sheep? This is a common sight in Ireland. Drivers learn to stop, accommodate them, and then continue ahead. Are you managing procrastination’s road blocks?
Here are three steps for overcoming procrastination that you can take right away. Some of these may seem simple, but many people don’t do them. If you commit to doing these, you will find yourself making progress. This will improve your self-esteem and your confidence.
Create a Zone of Silence
1. Create a zone of silence. On your calendar you need to select a particular day or four hours when you’re going to disconnect from everything. Work on one of your important initiatives. Continue to do that until that initiative is finished. Hopefully, you can take that initiative and know all the steps you need to take; plan out the hours. Do not answer your phone. Close down your social media. Don’t take interruptions. Put a sign on the door of your office to let everybody know, “Do not disturb me.”
The only person you need to fight is your inner procrastinator or the person who wants to wander away, who can’t get focused. Direct yourself during these few hours to do these particular tasks. Don’t move from that spot until those particular tasks are done.
Make a commitment to yourself because when you fulfill that commitment to yourself, you’re going to feel so good, and the next time you go back it’s going to be a little bit easier. Then you’ll find yourself thinking about something you would rather do. Stop yourself; you want to go to that next level, and every time you do that, it feeds the muscle. Shut out the world and the noise of the world, which is overwhelming these days, to get your task done, build your confidence and keep the fear away.
Use Your Unique talents
2. Make sure you are using your unique talents. Every one of us has unique talents, but what we find as entrepreneurs is that we end up doing lots of other things. They’re not our top unique talents. There are things that you or I do better than anyone else. I once heard an internet marketer freely admit he was good at creating products and lousy at all other things. I thought, “Isn’t it amazing that he can so candidly admit his strengths and weaknesses?” After being raised to never admit to a weakness, I had to unlearn this behavior.
When we do things that we’re good at, that have a lower failure rate attached to them, or that we’re not personally invested in, we protect our talent and our feelings. We spend our time doing things we’re good at. We’re spending our time getting self-validated that we’re good at something.
Delegate Things You Don’t Like to Do and Are Not Good At
3. Delegate things you do not like doing and that you are not good at. For me it’s QuickBooks and financial management. I am not good with numbers. I delegate that function to others who are much better at that work. You need to look at where you’re spending your time and stop doing things that you’re not good at, that are energy drains and a total waste of your time. Outsource them, delegate them, or don’t do them. You need to make sure that 70-80% of your time as a business owner is spent working in your areas of talent and in nothing else.
Create your cone of silence, identify your talents, and don’t take on anything else. Don’t indulge in the self- sabotaging behavior of overloading yourself if you fail. That’s a perfectionist behavior. You need to commit to yourself that you’re not going to take on anything that isn’t absolutely necessary for you to do until you get your initiative done. You need to honor your commitments to yourself.
Pat Iyer MSN RN LNCC is president of The Pat Iyer Group. She is the past president of AALNC and not typically afflicted by procrastination… only because she knows it lurks ready to pull her down. Get more tips on managing your legal nurse consulting business by investing in a copy of How to Start a Legal Nurse Consulting Business.