Inside: Frustrated by putting things off until the last minute? Learn how to stop procrastinating and finally get things done!

Ever wondered how some people can achieve so much during the day? It’s not magic or some special skill set. The secret to being highly productive is to discipline yourself to stop procrastinating and get things done.

The truth is, most of us are guilty of putting things off until later. It’s infinitely easier to focus on the now rather than start doing something that feels overwhelming or unappealing.

Here’s a little secret, though: while it may feel sorta good to snuggle up and binge-watch Netflix instead of ticking off items from your do-to list, it would feel better if you got that thing done first.

You’re not allowing your body and mind to fully relax when the thought of the things you’ll have to do later hovers over your head the entire time. You’re essentially wasting energy at the same time you’re supposed to be recharging it.

If you find yourself constantly putting things off and not achieving as much during the day as you’d like to, here are 8 proven and tested tips to finally beat procrastination and get things done!

stop procrastinating

How to Stop Procrastinating:

In a study conducted by Darius Foroux, 88% of the workforce claimed to have procrastinated for at least an hour per day. Procrastination can not only impact your work, but it can also result in higher stress levels as well as time wasted.

Use the following eight tips to help stop procrastination in your life.

1. Make your bed every single morning

Making your bed every morning is one of the most talked-about productivity tips, and that’s because it really works wonders!

Take a few minutes every morning to make your bed right after you get up. It is a super simple habit that will set the tone for your day. As soon as you’re done, the feeling of accomplishment can snowball into amazing productivity as it motivates you to complete other tasks.

Plus, there’s nothing quite like getting home from work to find a cozy, made-up bed waiting for you!

2. Try a power hour before taking a break

Power hours are one of the most effective ways to tackle tasks or shift your focus back when you start feeling procrastination kicking in.

They essentially work like this: Write down a goal or task you want to tackle during the next hour (make sure it’s realistic). Then, focus by blocking out any kind of distractions (yep, that includes your phone), and put your 100% into completing the task. After the hour is up, you can reward yourself with a break! 

Power hours work great as the first thing you do in the morning, or right before you’re going to take your lunch break.

If you have a friend who struggles with procrastination as well, you can become accountability partners by scheduling power hours together. Not only will this force both of you to get to work, but it’s also an excellent way to “socialize” and feel less alone, especially if you’re a solopreneur or work from home.

how to set goals in the new year

3. Write down your goals for the day

Make planning your day part of your daily morning routine. Sit down in a quiet spot and create a list of all the things you want to achieve during the day.

Having an intention is super important for productivity, and writing things down will help you materialize your intentions and give you a little kick to stay focused throughout the day. 

Plus, mapping your day out will make it infinitely easier to stick to your working hours as well as help you analyze what aspects of your work/life balance might need improvement.

Don’t make all your goals JUST about work! Make sure you also plan fun things and leisure time. Not only is having a healthy work/life balance essential for your mental health but having fun activities scheduled will inspire you to stop procrastinating so you can finish your work ASAP!

4. Set weekly goals

Speaking of daily goals, having bigger weekly goals is also super helpful when it comes to beating procrastination.

Every Monday morning, write down the things you want to achieve before the week is over. Once you’ve created your list, it will be a whole lot easier to piece out your goals and create smaller, more doable tasks that you can then place in your daily to-do lists.

Moreover, having a bigger overview of things will help you stay focused, create a realistic to-do list, and prioritize tasks and activities.

The Simply Scheduled Workbook was designed to help you plan out your daily, weekly, and monthly goals. Stop procrastinating and get more done by organizing your to-dos!

stop procrastinating

5. Block out social media during working hours

Social media is one of the biggest time-sucks out there, so get rid of the temptation to waste valuable hours on Instagram by completely blocking off the apps during working hours.

Thankfully, there are a few free apps out there to help you out! Offtime blocks out whatever distracts you the most, be it social media, games, and even text messages. You can also choose what you want to block at what specific time, which makes it infinitely easier to separate work and play.

Another great option is Flipd, which blocks certain apps of your choice on your phone for a set period of time – and there’s no going back once you do it (nope, not even restarting your phone will do the trick!).

6. Try the Pomodoro Technique

Know what’s the most common cause of procrastination? Feeling overwhelmed by what seems to be an endless to-do list. If this sounds like your problem, the Pomodoro Technique might be just what you’re after!

This is how it works:

  • Pick a task from your to-do list
  • Set a timer for 25 minutes and get to work. No interruptions allowed.
  • Focus on JUST the one task. Multi-tasking isn’t an option. 
  • After 25 minutes have passed and the task is complete, take a short break (5 to 10 minutes).
  • Repeat

Every 25-minute slot + a 5-minute break equals one Pomodoro. After you’ve completed a total of 5 Pomodoros, you can give yourself a longer break (30 minutes). 

Where Pomodoro came from

Pomodoro means “tomato” in Italian! This technique was developed in the 80s by a student who struggled with procrastination due to feeling too overwhelmed by everything he had to study.

As such, he decided it was a lot easier to take things one at a time. He started developing the technique by setting a time on his tomato-shaped clock (hence the name), and well… the rest is history!


7. Take (meaningful) breaks

Most people think of productivity as working non-stop all day, but the reality is that taking breaks is not only okay, but actually encouraged when it comes to getting things done.

Our brains are only able to focus for so long on something, so it’s essential to take short, consistent breaks throughout the day to clear your mind and get your energy back.

Pro tip: Avoid TV during your breaks! Leave Netflix for after-work hours because getting back on track after snuggling on your coach is practically impossible (if you can do it, share your secrets with us mere mortals!

8. Don’t wait until you feel like it

A big part of why people procrastinate is because they don’t feel like taking care of the task now. It may be something that seems intimidating or challenging, or just not fun.

The key for how to stop procrastinating is to discipline yourself to do it anyway. The reality is the task needs to get done regardless of whether or not you feel like it.

Putting it off just makes it feel worse. It also adds to feeling burdened and overwhelmed when you know you have nagging tasks that you should be taking care of.

If I waited until I felt like doing my taxes, they’d never get done. But I know they’re important to take care of and that I will feel much better if I get them done and check them off my list.

Plan some type of reward for yourself after you finish the task you’re dreading. It will help motivate you to get started even if you aren’t feeling like it.

Ready to stop procrastinating?

Which productivity tips did you find the most helpful or do you have any additional ones to share? Let us know in the comments section down below!

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  1. Number 8 is mine. 🙂 I really dislike the dishes (always have) and will even procrastinate on them by doing things like putting away the laundry. Technically, it needs to be done, too, but usually not as badly as the dishes, and then I end up not getting them all done before bed and having to do more the next morning. And, of course, I’m not necessarily doing something productive when I’m procrastinating on the dishes. (Hello, YouTube.)

    In fairness, though, I actually have been prioritizing the dishes more, and I finished nearly all of them last night. I felt pretty good! Truly, Netflix will never be as satisfying as accomplishing what you actually set out to do that day!

    PS: The ultimate way to eliminate distractions and time sinks is to literally not even have them to begin with. You will never waste time on Netflix if you don’t have a Netflix account and you won’t waste time checking social media on your phone if you don’t have social media apps on it. If you have to open and start up your laptop just to check your FB messages “real quick” you probably won’t do it. Instead, you can more easily block out an hour or two specifically to dedicate to social media and email after supper, and then you can pack the tech gadgets away for the rest of the day so they won’t interrupt your melatonin production before bed.

    I’ve not been good at employing time blocking, but I’m considering doing it at least for the internet, so I can just consolidate all my social media, email, etc. usage and not be distracted by it at random times during the day. I’m going to give it a try!

  2. After working outside the home for years, raising children, and putting creative projects off until I found
    time to enjoy them, I find myself burdened with boxes of goods to go through now that I’m retired!!
    Setting goals and following through is a struggle.
    Deciding which projects are still meaningful to me is another difficulty.

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