5 Tricks to Overcoming Procrastination

Are you behind on things or putting important tasks off until the last minute? Thenn take a look at these tricks.

Are you behind on things or putting important tasks off until the last minute? Thentake a look at these tricks!

photo by ailatan

We know we should not do it but we do anyway. What is it? Procrastination. How often have you had something you needed to do and then you just decided to put if off for a little while or you got caught up doing other ‘important things’.

It is just so easy to put something off until tomorrow. We often do it for a variety of reason, such as anxiety, busyness, boredom, or dislike for the task. But whatever the reason, it needs to stop, which is why we have 5 tricks to help you stop procrastinating today.  You can read about them tomorrow if you like.  Just kidding.  You need to read them now or you would not be on this page.  :-)
  • Take on only what you can accomplish – If you have so much to do that you cannot get any of it done on time then cut back and focus on a few tasks that you can do on time. A key part to fixing procrastination is simply managing your time and energy well. Look at all the activities and tasks you have, and then try to see if you can actually accomplish them in the amount of time you have. if you need to reorganize your life, then do it. Sometimes it takes some change in other areas before you will see change in this area.
  • Structure your time – set aside time for doing the things that usually distract you. If you like to take a break from accomplishing things by visiting your favorite websites plan a time to do that or use it as a reward after you have accomplished something important.
  • Tackle the hardest thing first.  Often we put off the hardest task and do things that are less difficult in their place.  Many times we never get around tot he really important things.  If you tackle the important things first the rest of the day will go much easier.  I have quit responding to my email in the morning and have started leaving it until the afternoon.  I’ll check to make sure there are no emergency emails but then I get started tackling projects and answer email later in the day when I have less project time.
  • Don’t get distracted – when you set out to do something, then keep doing it until you finish. Don’t let friends or other things distract you. Be sure that you set aside enough time to do the task in the first place.
  • Just do it – get your tasks done when you think about them, don’t but it off. If you think about another task while you are in the middle of one, then write it down and continue on your current task.
If you are stuck on what to focus on take a breather and ask God for wisdom both on what to work on and how to go about it.
Procrastination can be a difficult habit to break but you’ll be on you way if you follow these tips.  Not only will you find you are accomplishing more but your energy will increase and you’ll feel better about life.

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Seven Benefits of Life Coaching

Life is full of twists and turns but a life coach can help you stay on track

Life is full of twists and turns but a life coach can help you stay on track

Photo by MASON(alex555)

In a sports game, where there is a specific amount of time and a clear winner, the coach’s influence is pretty easy to see.  A great coach can take a good team and mold them into champions.  Like wise sometimes you have a team filled with champions that are unable to even make it to the playoffs because they don’t work well as a team.

Benefits from life coaching can be immediate and often last a life time.  Often a coach will offer a valuable suggestion or ask a question in a way that changes your thinking immediately.  A few years ago I was talking to my life coach about my struggle with desiring to work on business and ministry at the same time and how I felt guilty when I would work on business dreams.  He asked me a question that immediately changed my outlook.  “Buddy, who do you think put the desires in you?”  Obviously it was God but immediately it made it alright to have those dreams and desires instead of something that I always had to be fighting.  That has been a lasting change.

Just a few weeks ago I was talking with a life and leadership coach about the possibility of coaching for our entire organization.  I thought it was going to be strictly business but he opened it up as if it was a coaching call so before we got off I asked him, “Do you mind if I ask you a coaching question to help with my leadership.”  He said to go ahead and with a few quick questions I had a game plan to proceed with a meeting that I had schedule that day.

Here are Seven general benefits that you will probably see if you invest in a life coach.

Seven benefits from life coaching:

1. Life Coaching helps you to figure out your real priorities in your life.

2. Life Coaching helps to shorten the time frame to achieving your goals.

3.     Life Coaching helps to give you an outside viewpoint to allow you to see how God has worked in your life and some of the possibilities for the future.

4. Life Coaching facilitates organization and structure in your life, and encourages you to do above and beyond what you would normally do by yourself.

6. Life Coaching provides you with self-assurance, support, certainty, confidence, encouragement, motivation and inspiration depending on your needs and the situation.

7. Life Coaching helps you to walk in the good works that God has prepared in advance for you so that you don’t go through life aimlessly.

Life Coaching is an investment in yourself that will benefit you for the rest of your life. It can have such positive lasting effects that many see it as a necessary activity for any individual who desires to make their life count.

The key difference that a good life coach should make in your life is to help you reach your goals faster and easier than you can on your own.  A good coach will help you with questions, encouragement and short cuts that you might not have known on your own.  A good life coach can be the difference between living an OK life and living the life of a champion.


The Importance of Short Term Goals

Using short term goals you can reach even the most lofty goal

Using short term goals you can reach even the most lofty goal

Photo by Kevin Steele

You may be great at putting together a lofty vision that encompasses your long term goals, but what are you doing to reach them? Do you have steps and short term goals to help you reach your final objective?

Long term goals are great, but as long as you don’t have a step by step plan for getting there, you probably won’t get there. Setting several short term goals that lead you to accomplishing your final objective is the best way to stay focused and on track.

In a great book I was reading called Axiom by Bill Hybels the author said that he uses a six by six rule for planning and accomplishing short term goals. He puts together a list of short term tasks and goals that he needs to do and then narrows it down to just six key tasks to do that will also work towards his long term vision. He then gives himself just 6 weeks to do each of the six short term goals. Once the six weeks are up, it’s time to put together a new list of short term goals.

This method of organizing and then giving yourself a specific amount of time to accomplish your short term goals is a fantastic way to boost your effectiveness. You will also feel much better about your long term vision because you are taking manageable steps towards reaching that vision.

Is it time for you to stop being frustrated with long term goals, and focus on six specific short term goals for six weeks? Get something done now, and write down what your short term goals are. If need be, you don’t have to make it six goals in six weeks, you can tailor it to fit what you are doing. The important thing is to start doing something now to ensure you reach your long term vision in the future.

Cut that out

Do you ever wish that there were just big scissors around the things in your life that it made sense to cut out? Probably some of us would love that and others would rebel that we were being told what to cut out of our lives. I think in this picture the paving crew was being told where to cut the road. :-)

Well for better or worse (mostly for better I think) it is left almost entirely up to us what to cut out of our lives so that we can make time for the really important things.

Here are some things that you might want to cut out of your life so that you can make time for reading.

1. TV. Especially now with being able to download TV shows commercial free on Itunes it might be a good time to get rid of the TV. I have met a few families or friends over the years that haven’t had TV and I think they were better off for it. We went a year without a TV and we will be without TV starting in September again and I can’t wait. If you can’t cut out TV just try reading during the commercials.

2. Eliminate Unnecessary commitments. Perhaps you have been locked into somethings that aren’t in your areas of strengths or that someone else could be doing much better. Think of clubs, civic organizations, church activities that aren’t what God has for you. Many of these things might be really good. But really good is the enemy of great.

3. Facebook, MySpace or Surfing Online. If you track the time that you spend online that isn’t purposeful you might be able to read a book a week. Seriously the amount of time that people spend online is eclipsing the amount of time that they spend in front of the TV.

4. Unsubscribe from Email Lists. I started unsubscribing from email lists about 3 weeks ago and literally every day I have more email lists that I am getting off of. It’s not just the time it takes to delete the emails each day but they often distract us from what we need to be doing when we are at our desks in front of the computer. An additional idea is to have a seperate email for mailing lists that you check once a week.

5. Don’t Shower. OK. I admit this one is a little extreme. But it just goes to show you that things really can be cut from your life so that you can read. I heard a guy speak that makes about $50,000 a month online and he was talking about the things that people do instead of accomplishing things. There were the typical things like TV and procrastinating. When he talked about not bathing to accomplish things I realized he was serious about what was important in his life.

6. Work Less. You might have scoffed at this one. I am a firm believer in working hard and giving whatever you are doing your all. The hours that we work continues to increase and I am sure that most of us could accomplish what we do in less time if we worked a little less and worked a little smarter.

Hopefully those ideas get you jumpstarted about what you can cut out of your own life so that you can make time to read.