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CORPORATE| 11.06.2023

Avoid procrastination and achieve your goals

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It is critical for companies to acknowledge and address the challenges that affect productivity and well-being in the daily lives of their employees. Procrastination, which is a common phenomenon that can have negative impacts on efficiency and goal achievement, is a significant matter both professionally and personally.

Procrastination seems to be the reason people will leave holiday shopping to the last day, fail to turn in a college paper on time, or pay their bills late.

But what really is procrastination? Procrastinating is the act of postponing or delaying a task or activity, often by opting to perform lower-priority activities or even avoiding performing any task at all.

It is estimated that 20% of adults and 50% of students have serious procrastination problems. In fact, they are aware that it is a self-destructive behavior that will lead to negative consequences later on, and yet they fail to avoid it.

In today’s article we will give you some tips on how to avoid this self-destructive behavior.

Why do we leave important tasks for later?

Procrastination arises from a limitation in the brain’s ability to self-regulate. Self-control is essential for the survival of our species since, for example, it prevents us from acting impulsively when we are angry.

Our brain has specialized circuits to curb our individual impulses in favor of long-term rewards. However, as with other evolutionary adaptations, we have not yet fully perfected self-control. Cases of inappropriate behavior, such as procrastination, demonstrate that this mechanism does not always operate as expected.

Procrastination manifests itself when lack of self-control prioritizes immediate gratification (such as watching a cat video on TikTok) over goals that may be less pleasurable in the short term (such as finishing a project or exercising), but will undoubtedly bring benefits in the future.

How do you avoid procrastination?

Procrastination is a common challenge that many people face in their day-to-day lives. There are effective strategies to overcome this habit and improve productivity.

First, it is essential to establish clear and specific goals. Defining concrete objectives provides clarity on what needs to be achieved. In addition, breaking tasks into smaller parts can make them feel less overwhelming and easier to tackle.

Assigning realistic deadlines for completing each part of a task or the project as a whole is another important tool. This provides a time structure and a sense of urgency that can be very motivating.

In addition, the use of time management techniques can be of great help. Effective methods include the Pomodoro technique, which consists of working in focused blocks of time followed by breaks, or the Eisenhower matrix, which prioritizes tasks according to importance and urgency.

Identifying and minimizing distractions is another crucial step. This may include turning off notifications on your smartphone, closing irrelevant tabs in your browser, or setting up a distraction-free workspace.

It is also important to practice self-reflection to understand the underlying reasons for procrastination. Is it lack of motivation, fear of failure, anxiety or other concerns? Knowing the causes will allow you to address them more effectively.

Creating a schedule is a great way to organize your day. Setting specific times to work on important tasks, as well as including time for breaks and leisure activities, can help maintain focus and productivity.

Celebrating achievements, even small gains, is an effective way to motivate yourself. Setting rewards that encourage you to complete tasks and meet your goals is a powerful strategy.

Maintaining a balanced lifestyle with a good diet, regular exercise and sufficient rest is essential. A healthy body and mind contribute to maintaining high levels of energy and concentration.

Lastly, it is important to accept imperfection. It is not necessary to seek perfection in everything you do. Sometimes, it is more important to complete a task satisfactorily than to pursue absolute perfection.