We all recognize that feeling of wanting to plan a weekend trip, scroll social media, or do anything besides work. That’s the urge to procrastinate, and it’s natural. I’ve felt it, and you probably have, too. It’s how we respond to that feeling that keeps our schedules running smoothly or not. This is when I had the idea to brainstorm 7 ways to overcome procrastination.
Avoiding tasks that cause us stress or, let’s face it, that we don’t really want to do is one way to respond, although my experience is that doesn’t yield positive results. When I put off work today, it is still waiting for me tomorrow or the next day. Having strategies that help me stay on track leads to less stress and keeps me aligned with my goals.
Below are 7 ways to overcome procrastination that all of us as entrepreneurs can incorporate into our work day to help us stay on schedule.
Step One: Challenge Your Fears
Fears around business can lead to procrastination. You may feel the need to make sure everything is perfect before taking the next step toward launching your product, or you may have fears around money, as I have in the past. One way to overcome a fear mindset as an entrepreneur is to remember all the times when you’ve confronted your fears and won. Add up your accomplishments and acknowledge your winning track record that got you to this point. Sometimes just reminding yourself of your business abilities is all it takes to push you on to the next goal.
Step Two: Change Your Working Environment
Focusing on what’s in front of you sounds easy – until you get 10 work texts in 30 minutes. We may feel like we have to answer each one of those texts right away. That’s what a boss does, right? The good news is that very few messages are so important that they need an immediate response.
If you know someone is waiting for an answer from you, send a response then get back to work. Put your phone on airplane mode and keep it out of sight for 30 minutes or the amount of time you need to refocus. You can reuse this strategy to overcome procrastination any time in the future.
Step Three: Do the Hard Tasks First
Work takes a lot of energy. That’s why I try to complete the most demanding work tasks early in the day when I have the most energy to give. Client meetings and brainstorming sessions that require a lot of creativity are great for mornings, while quick one-off calls to suppliers or marketers might be better for after lunch.
The more you match a task with the energy it takes to complete it, the less likely you are to procrastinate.
Step Four: Be Accountable
Having project deadlines only works if those deadlines apply to everyone on your team – including you. Make it clear to your team what tasks are yours and when you have completed them.
Project management software is a great way to keep your team aware of what everyone is doing. My company uses ClickUp to communicate on every project. One of the app’s best features allows everyone assigned to a project to check off each task – no matter how big or small – once it is resolved. I also appreciate the app’s automated features that ensure select steps are tracked consistently teamwide..
Step Five: Know Your Why
Sometimes the best way to overcome procrastination is to remember why you went into business in the first place. The secret is to know your why – why you decided to stop working for other people and strike out on your own.
My why is to inspire and empower entrepreneurs to do what they love. Once you know your why, you can use it at any time to refocus and push ahead.
Step Six: The One-Minute Method
We all have tasks that we spend more time avoiding than we would spend just finishing the job. I get it. It’s hard to start on tasks we dread. But most of us can do anything for a minute. The next time you are procrastinating, set a timer for one minute and get started. Don’t worry about feeling ready. Chances are you will find you are ready to finish the job when one minute is up!
Step Seven: Make a New Plan
If you are using a project management app but still feel the pull of procrastination, it may be time for a new plan. Consider time-blocking which allows you to block off a set amount of hours or days for a specific task. Or you can restructure your work week so that certain days are reserved for creative tasks only. What’s important is that you find the right system for your business.
Final Take on 7 Ways to Overcome Procrastination
Life is full of demands on our time. As entrepreneurs, those demands multiply as our business grows. That is a good problem to have until we start to run out of steam or lose our focus. I’ve been there in my business and have good news – there are ways to beat procrastination!
The 7 ways to overcome procrastination throughout this blog post have been useful to me as an entrepreneur. I encourage you to give them a try whenever you need a little extra push to accomplish your goals.
Are you procrastinating on branding and marketing tasks for your business? The good news is, you don’t have to do everything yourself! The creative team at Crème de Mint is here to help. Schedule a free consultation to find out how we can take some tasks off your plate.