8 tips to stop procrastinating

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If you're anything like me, your train has stopped at the procrastination station a few times. Mine is broken down and gotten stuck at procrastination station.

So here are a few things I do when I find myself procrastinating.

1. Ask yourself why you're procrastinating.

What is it about what you're supposed to be doing that makes you just not want to do it? Why does it not bring you excitement and fulfillment? See if you can change your perspective on the situation.

2. Find an alternative.

For me, there's something about mailing packages that I hate; that it just doesn't get done. It's going to the post office. It's getting the packaging. It's mailing it. So I found an alternative, and that is that the US Postal Service online. For real, USPS does all that online.

You don't even have to go to the post office for any reason other than to pick something up, if you absolutely have to. You can order boxes online, packaging online, schedule a shipment, pay online. They will come and get your stuff. You don't even have to go to the post office.

So if there is something blocking you, something that just makes you hate that task, find an alternative to it. Find a different way to do it.

3. Start right away.

Have you ever been given a project with a deadline two or three weeks away only to do the work at the last minute? Having too much time might actually be an issue for you. Instead, get started right away. 

Try to get it done before your deadline. Or do it in parts, assigning yourself a deadline for each part. You've gotten most of it done, so why not finish what you've started?

4. Do the hardest part first.

Going ahead and getting the hardest part done, you've eliminated those excuses. And it seems like the task gets easier as it goes along, instead of harder.

5. Follow the two-minute rule

This is a life-changing principle. I heard it from Kendra Adachi over at The Lazy Genius. It is the two-minute rule. If you have two minutes and it only takes you two minutes, go ahead and get it done.

Sometimes that may be something like sending an email or unloading the dishwasher. But whatever task it is that you're putting off, if it only takes you two minutes, do it.

6. Tell someone.

As bad as it sounds, there's something about not want to feel like a failure that is absolutely motivational, right? Or appearing like a failure.

So have some accountability. Tell someone the task you're going to accomplish and make them ask you about it.

7. Work then reward.

There are wonderful things out there like Netflix and social media that we all want to be a part of. But they are major distractions, what about using them as a reward?

Say to yourself, "I'm going to finish these three things on my to-do list and then I can watch an episode of Stranger Things." Or check off one thing and then peruse Instagram for 10 minutes. Give yourself a little treat or a little reward. Maybe use something that would have been a distraction as that reward.

8. Change the setting, if you can.

Now, as a work-at-home mom, I can't drag three kids with me to Starbucks because I want to work somewhere else for the day. But maybe if I have Saturday afternoon, or my husband's home, or I have some child care, I can change the scenery. And get some things done.

But I can also go outside and return phone calls outside, sit on my front porch with a cup of coffee, and return emails that I was putting off because I'm the worst at returning emails. 

What about you? How do you over come procastiation?