This post is the final part of an exercise to tackle procrastination. If you missed the start click here for the first part ,Tackling Procrastination: The Ghosts of Projects Past. Part two can be found here Procrastination Boot Camp
My last post left us considering how to remove, or at least reduce, the impact of the factors that were driving us to procrastinate over a project we were particularly reluctant to work on. The things that were driving me to procrastinate over altering the blinds for my lounge window were pretty much the top reasons any of us procrastinate, so here’s how I tackled them…
Reason one: I may lack the skill
This reason is best addressed first in anyone’s list. Some good questions to ask are:
- Do I really lack the necessary skill(s)?
- How can I develop the skills I lack?
- Who could help me?
- Would it be better to employ someone to do this?
I concluded that I probably have the skills and that I can, and should, sort the blinds out myself.
If lack of skill, or potential lack of skill, is on your list, your exploration should have either:
- Led you to create a plan to progress your project – even if this means learning new skills first or getting someone else to finish it.
- Identified/underlined that your procrastination is driven by a lack of confidence or you’re stepping out of your comfort zone.
Reason two: Lack of confidence/stepping out of my comfort zone
Once we’ve addressed any lack of skill(s), stepping out of our comfort zone comes down to building confidence about this new experience. I worked on my confidence by asking,
- What have I done in the past that suggests I am capable of doing this?
- Who could support me as I do this?
- Is there something else I can do first to increase my confidence for this project?
- What’s the worst that could happen?**
- I made my own wedding dress, so I’m perfectly capable of altering a blind.
- My friend Sandra could advise me if needed.
- Doing something first to increase my confidence would just be further procrastination.
- Worst case scenario is that I mess up and have to pay for two new pairs to be made.
**Remember fear is sometimes keeping you safe and I do not endorse or encourage anyone doing anything that may put them in physical or psychological danger or that has financial implications they are not prepared to take responsibility for.
Reason three: I lacked a plan
Here I just needed to kick myself up the butt and make one. If I hadn’t been sure what plan to make, I would have sought advice or bounced ideas off a constructive friend.
Take a good look at the blinds and the window on Wednesday afternoon next week. Work out what to do and make a start.
Reason four: It’s a boring job
Although I asked myself what I could do to make this project more interesting, I’m still working on this one!
Good luck removing the drivers that have been fuelling your procrastination. I’d love to know if anyone’s got any other thoughts about tackling the challenges I’ve mentioned above, or how they’re dealing with any challenges that don’t fit into the categories I’ve mentioned.