How to stop procrastinating right now

Several times I've talked about this here because it's one of the most common and also most damaging things we do, and it's also the most avoidable. I even have an episode of Vida Millennial Podcast about it, in spanish.

What is procrastination? Like almost everything in our dictionary, it comes from Latin. Specifically from the verb procrastinare, which means to postpone until tomorrow, but it doesn't end there. It also derives from the ancient Greek word akrasia, doing something against our better judgment. 

Is it seeking instant satisfaction when completing a task that we could do at any time? Is it pure self-sabotage? Is it being paralyzed by fear of the new? Is it believing that maybe we're not quite enough? Is it overconfidence in oneself? I don't know, everyone will have their own answer. I'm torn between the first and the fourth.

I procrastinate, you procrastinate, we all procrastinate. And like every human action, it can be changed. How? Let me share what works for me.

Set clear goals 
Maybe "creating a proposal for a client," "writing the thesis," "writing a book" sounds like a goal, and although deep down it is, it's not clear. Describe the ultimate goal, yes, but what do I do now? How do I start? If I have to create a proposal for a client: create the brief, objectives, buyer persona, mood board, content calendar. If I have to write the thesis: define the topic, search for methodological tools, theoretical framework, case studies, plan. If I have to write a book: define the concept, synopsis, structure, whatever is easiest for each one. And from there, we go to the next point.

Break down tasks 
Everything is a process and as a process it has stages. Maybe that task seems too big, so, to make it easier, we break it down into parts to move forward. If, for example, "creating a brief" seems too big then break it down: create a template or see what data I need in each case, create the questions, chat with the client, edit, schedule a feedback session, edit again. If a task seems too big: break it down. Divide the processes to move forward step by step, but move forward.

I really don't know how many productivity videos or podcasts I've consumed in my life, but what they all say: do the most important thing first. We all have tasks that will keep things running and tasks that move us forward. It could be writing an email, a post for you, scheduling a meeting, or making progress on an important project. Then you can move on to the rest, but first things first.

Organize your day 
Setting a time of day or week to do a certain task already predisposes you to do it. I used to be a big fan of agendas - and in fact, I have had an agenda since I was 13, don't ask me what I wrote because I don't know - but after moving to Croatia I don't have notebooks and my best friend is Google Calendar. You can use a bullet journal, a notebook, Google Calendar, Notion, or whatever you want, but establishing when you're going to do what helps you remember and get into that mindset to do it. And by the way, how nice it is to cross things off, right?

No more distractions 
Identify those things that distract you from doing that task: are the dishes dirty? Wash them as soon as you finish eating. Is there laundry to do? Put the washing machine on at night and forget about it. Are there other tasks you want to do first? Get ahead with work that you can quickly accomplish. Is it your phone? Silence it, turn it off, or turn it over. Is it people texting you with urgent things and you can't? Find a time of day when they're not active, e.g. 6 or 7 am. Eliminate distractions and you'll see how not only do you get things done but also faster.

Apply the 2-minute rule 
 Simple, if something takes you less than 2 minutes, do it now. Get it over with.

Create your own routines 
You know what works for you, when you feel best, what you need. I like to wake up super early, do my skincare routine, drink water, journal, study some Croatian, do a unit of a course on Domestika, and then start working. I already know that if I accomplished those things I already took care of myself and can deal with the rest. That works for me, it keeps me pretty centered, organized, productive, and happy. For some, it might be going for a run, having a good breakfast, etc. Establish daily habits that help you stay focused.

Get inspired 
Consume videos, posts, texts that help you achieve what you want or serve you for something. I love mom accounts that share what helps them work outside the home, achieve their professional goals, and organize themselves, when I feel so-so I watch a video and it motivates me. Identify what inspires you and what doesn't, what leaves you with something and what doesn't.

If you have any extra tips they are super welcome in the comments, I hope it helps you, I have a lot of fun writing and reviewing everything I should be doing right now. Let's get sh*t done.

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