No, you won’t do better work by procrastinating. And you will not have more time next week. In fact, leaving things unfinished makes you stupid. Here’s what works:
- Make specific plans. Just setting a date and a time when you’re going to do something makes you more likely to follow through. Or write down the steps necessary to do the work.
- Use short, painless dashes of effort. Just have at it for five minutes and feel free to watch the clock. Chances are you’ll realize it’s not so bad.
- Rewarding yourself for doing things you don’t want to do can be a powerful motivator.
- Use “precommitment devices” to make sure you follow through. Stickk is a good one.
- Asking yourself whether you intend on doing something is a more powerful motivator than telling yourself you will do it.
- Understand the secrets to willpower, breaking bad habits, productivity, and achieving goals.
- Forgive yourself when you do procrastinate to prevent a vicious circle. Hey, even procrastination researchers have a sense of humor about it.
This piece originally appeared on Barking Up the Wrong Tree.
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