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6 Tips To Cure Your Procrastination (Unless you're like me and eat chocolate to cure your blocks😝)

We've all been here before, right? We're at this point in our project, assignment, email, or other task, but can't bring ourselves to finish it. Maybe you're even a writer like me and you got stuck in another writer's block. Procrastination can come from anything, not just standard school/office work but anything that you're not looking forward to doing.

So, is there a cure? Yes, but everyone's cure is something different that they may or may not have unlocked yet. I'm just sharing my own 6 tips! Hopefully they help!

1. First and Always: Connecting With Your Purpose

Sometimes when you've been procrastinating for a long time, or you don't want to do the task anymore, take a minute to ask yourself why you chose to do it in the first place. As it says on a poster in my room "When you feel like quitting, think about why you started-Anonymous" So, take a minute right now and ask yourself what purpose the task you're procrastinating about fulfills. Is it a test you're studying for to learn the material (or to just pass the test)? Is it a chore you're dreading, but will make your room/home cleaner?

Whatever it is, if you come back to the greater purpose behind your actions, you'll self-motivate yourself to keep persisting with it (or force yourself to complete it because it will ultimately improve your day-to-day life) . There's always a purpose to people's actions in some way or another, and if there isn't any immediate visible one, consider whether the task you're procrastinating about is really worth following through with.

One thing I've learned over the years battling my own procrastination is that it kicks in because you begin to slack off and lose focus of your greater goal, so the solution? Reconnect yourself to the reason you started working on the thing in the first place. Reconnect to your purpose.

2. Minimize All of Your Distractions. Actually, ELIMINATE Distractions

No phones, no social media, no texting, no annoying noise, no distractions. Sounds simple enough, right? Nope. When you're procrastinating, you'll take literally any excuse to get distracted and 'forget' about what you're supposed to be working on. The biggest source of distraction is...phones. They're everywhere, everywhere you go, but if you just put the phone away for an hour or two, you'll get way more work done. It's easier to concentrate when you don't have any distractions that eliminate your focus. Wear headphones to block noise, do your work in a room that's not busy or super loud. You literally have nothing else to do but do your work. If you're on a device to do the work, make it full screen if it's possible so you don't see any tabs (and you don't have the temptation to visit another website)

Now, you don't have an excuse to not do your work.

3. Get it over with EARLY. Never wait until the last minute to complete it.

Sorry, last-minute attempts never work. Okay, if it does work for you, you'll never get rid of those bad habits of saying the dreaded words I'll do it tomorrow. Habits are hard to break, but getting over with work early has many benefits for you, both physically and mentally.

Anyways, we all want to do our work at the last minute because at first the deadline seems miles away and you think you have time to spare, but in reality, you don't. If you put off your work for a long time, you'll find yourself with one day left until your deadline...and none of us want to come across that disaster. You'll have to do it all at midnight and you're so drained after the whole day that the assignment is nowhere close to your best work. (And this applies to basically every task, not just assignments)

This is where you need to firmly tell yourself that you need to get the task done, because if you procrastinate, it will NEVER EVER get done. We all want to laze around, but if you take the extra effort to take the extra step, you'll reap the rewards. What I like to tell myself is "if you get it done today, you have more time for yourself tomorrow." You need to tackle the tasks as they come.

4. Set aside a specific time for your work on a specific thing.

Make time for yourself. When you make a to-do list, tackle the hard things first and set a specific alarm with a specific time that you're going to do it at. Not only should you be organized and make a to-do list (place it right in front of a place you usually are at so you'll see it at all times) but set a specific time to do the task at. Visualize your regular day. Are there any conflicts that will come up later? When is the best time for you to complete the task? It's important to sweat the little things down to the specifics. Visualizing your day and tailoring when you'll be most suited to completing your work doesn't always go the way you planned, but it can help give you a sense of urgency that a certain thing needs to get finished by a certain time.

Set alarms. Put sticky notes all over your workspace so you don't forget. Write it on your calendar/add it in on your online calendar. Keep on reminding yourself and take things one thing at a time. Most importantly, work at the time of day when you feel the most productive. You shouldn't work when you're upset or overworked already.

5. DO NOT ZONE OUT! Be persistent with this process and reward yourself.

I know this sounds like I'm telling you not to work, but DO NOT sit at your computer staring at the assignment for eternity. First of all, that's not how you get out of a block. Secondly, you're just going to waste your precious time and before you know it, the day is over and you have nothing written down. Zoning out in front of a computer will block your mind towards developing any solutions, and it's also very stressful. You're already mad, angry, and frustrated. Don't make it worse by putting too much pressure on yourself. Set time limits for yourself and come back to it later.

Part Two!! Be persistent with breaking the procrastination habit. Like anything you start for the first time, it's not going to all magically work out the first day. Visualizing, making schedules, and not waiting until the day before things are due can vary sometimes. You might wake up and nothing goes according to plan. And that's okay. Be persistent, and don't give up. The beginning is always the hardest. Forgive yourself for procrastinating in the past. We all do it. It happens. If things do work out, reward yourself; we all need that motivation.

6. And remember not to be too hard on yourself! Take a Break (for a little while)

Last but not least, take a break. Dump your books on the bed and walk right out the door for a nice walk outside. Listen to some calm, relaxing music for a little while. Just do whatever makes you happy for 20- 30 minutes to clear your head. If you're frustrated, maybe ask for help. Don't be too hard on yourself and turn that into procrastinating.

Breaks are necessary. Never think that a well-deserved break is an excuse. We all need to have a little self love and self value to take that time we need each day to spend on ourselves. When you feel ready to tackle the project again, go right ahead, but don't wait too long. Taking a break and relaxing can actually improve your attitude towards the task at hand that you were procrastinating about earlier. If you're in a good mood, you might even want to complete it!

Now, what're you still doing here?! Go and start working!

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