How to Beat Procrastination: Worst Things First

According to the American Psychological Association, chronic procrastination affects approximately 15-20% of adults in the general population. Blame technology, blame culture, blame a generation, but we’ve all succumbed to procrastination at one point or another. The truth of the matter remains the same, there’s no denying that the phenomenon can seriously hamper productivity.

Solving the Procrastination Problem

In an interview with Hara Estroff Marano for Psychology Today, Joseph Ferrari, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Psychology at De Paul University in Chicago stated. “Telling someone who procrastinates to buy a weekly planner is like telling someone with chronic depression to just cheer up.”

Thankfully, calendars, lists, and planners are not the only way to break procrastination. To solve this problem, try a simple and easily applied rule to start your day called “eating the frog.”

Eating the Frog

Taken straight from the mouth of Mark Twain who said, “Eat a live frog first thing in the morning and nothing worse will happen to you the rest of the day,” the concept is simple: tackle the least desirable stuff first thing in the morning and the rest of the day’s tasks won’t seem so bad. There are

There are many reasons people procrastinate and though it’s easy to blame shortening attention spans and cat videos , those excuses fail to address one of procrastination’s natural motivators — humans put off doing things they really don’t like. Eating the proverbial frog first thing in the morning tricks our brain into realizing “I can do this.”

Stressed young man with his hand on his head, looking at a laptop covered in stickers at a cafe.

The Power of Priorities

This exercise helps condition your brain to prioritize, which is especially important in the workplace where you might receive tasks from multiple people with a variety of deadlines. In his book, Eat that Frog!, Brian Tracy, business consultant and motivational speaker, suggests:

  1. Be Selective: Cultivate an ability to identify your most important task and get started on it quickly. This will increase your productivity level, and in return, your success more than any other skill you’ll develop.
  2. Develop the Habits of Success: Avoiding procrastination and being productive is a learned habit. You must consciously create new positive habits and flex your productivity muscles for them to grow. On the other hand, be aware that procrastination will not likely disappear overnight — replacing bad habits with good ones takes time.
  3. Visualize Yourself as You Want to Be: One way to speed up your transformation is by integrating mindfulness into your journey to productivity. Create a mental picture of how your life will look once you overcome procrastination and implement positive habits into your routine — how much more will you get accomplished? What other things will you finally be able to tackle? How will your work life change?

Working Past Procrastination

Put procrastination behind you with KnowledgeCity. We have over 10,000 video tutorials in Business, Computer Software and Safety Compliance. Hone in your planning skills with The Procedures of Successful Managers and Goal Setting courses. Try it Free Demo.

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