4 Considerations for Dealing With Procrastination
Everyone experiences procrastination. Even if you’re a successful business owner, you’ve undoubtedly faced it in some form. Why doesn’t everyone sprint toward their goals? What’s holding them back? Studies about procrastination point to it being more than a time-management issue. Evidence-based insight can have powerful implications for how you approach professional development. Read on for a few important things to be aware of.
1. Fear of Failure
Do you have high standards? This can lead to fear of failure and procrastination. The fear might be so intense that you delay launch dates, obsess over tiny details, or miss deadlines. Perfectionism can, ironically, hold you back. Try to be gentle with yourself. Your perfectionism isn’t a bad thing. Focus on excellence instead. Excellence implies sharing what you’ve done with others, even if it’s a not-quite-perfect beta version.
2. Not Knowing Where to Start
Feeling overwhelmed is a common malady in this fast-paced culture. If you think about everything on your to-do list, it can seem as if there isn’t a good place to start. Then, you’ll be tempted to spend time on low-value activities first; checking social media, cleaning out your inbox. This is where prioritizing is essential. Make a list of the most important priorities for your business, and get feedback from people you trust. This will help guide your actions.
3. Progress Seems Slow
At the beginning of a new project, you probably feel enthusiastic about the challenge. As time goes by (think months or years), your energy flags. What’s happening is an interplay of biology and time. Dopamine, the brain’s reward chemical, releases when the brain encounters novelty. As the novelty wears off, so does dopamine. Then, there’s a tendency to seek out a low-value dopamine hit. The antidote: Intentionally set up a reward system for each significant milestone.
4. Disliking the Task
Some tasks are boring, repetitive, and simply not fun. Few people want to spend their precious time invoicing, just as few people want to spend all of their time visiting the dentist or DMV. It’s a given that running a business involves mundane tasks. What’s important to know is that you don’t have to have motivation as a requirement to complete these types of tasks. Build reward time into the workflow to help make boring tasks more automatic.
Effective professional development requires dealing effectively with procrastination. Keep these considerations in mind to boost your business’s productivity.