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20 strategies to stop procrastinating

Everyone procrastinates some of the time and for a variety of reasons!

The secret to dealing with procrastination is to:

  • analyze why you are procrastinating in a particular situation
  • choose a start-up strategy (or several) from the list below, matching the strategy or strategies to the specific situation and to your personal style
  1. Start simple. “Warm up” by doing a part of the task that requires little effort.
  2. Try the 10 Minute Rule: Set your timer for 10 minutes. No stopping for at least 10 minutes….
  3. Subdivide tasks into smaller chunks to reduce difficulty.
  4. Make a list of these small tasks and check them off as you complete them.
  5. Do a high priority task to give you a sense of accomplishment.
  6. Sandwich difficult tasks between more pleasant activities.
  7. Set up a ritual to help you get started on tasks you must do regularly.
  8. Set up a reward or incentive for finishing something.
  9. Make a game to finish a task within a time limit.
  10. Cut off temptations: turn off your phone, shut your door, study away from TV, or bed, etc.
  11. Lower expectations and do the best you can within the time limit.
  12. Suspend your criticism to get through the task. Just get it done!
  13. Substitute the mental message "I should…" with "I’d like to…"
  14. Imagine the worst possible consequences if you don’t do what you are avoiding.
  15. Imagine how good you will feel to get this thing started or done!
  16. Cooperate with a friend in working on assignments.
  17. Appoint a "buddy" to help discipline you to stay on task.
  18. Go public. Tell people what you plan to do. You’ll feel guilty if you don’t.
  19. Believe in yourself. You can do it!
  20. JUST DO IT! 

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