Procrastination is the bane of working from home. If you are someone who works at home regularly, then you absolutely NEED to learn to avoid the temptation to spend the first hour and a half doing nothing at all.
Chambers English Dictionary defines procrastination quite simply as “to put off till some future time, to defer”.
Its root is from two Latin words, pro, meaning onward, and crastinus, meaning ‘of tomorrow’
Otherwise, you are suddenly working 5 hour days instead of 8 hour days, and that’s something your employers and clients are going to notice.
In this presentation, we’re going to look at tips for crushing procrastination.
Break Your Work into Little Steps
Part of the reason why we procrastinate is that subconsciously, we think that the work is too overwhelming.
Solution: Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “this is so simple that I should just get this out of the way!”.
The problem is that there is no accountability for procrastination. This is why it is worse for those that work from home, versus those that work in an office.
In an office, people are looking over your shoulder, but here you can do whatever you like!
One solution is to create stakes for yourself. An easy way to do that? Email your client and tell them that you’re going to finish X amount of work and send it to them daily.
Suddenly, the option to sit on your thumbs for the first few days on a project is GONE.
Work in a Coffee Shop
This won’t always be possible depending on your circumstances. But when it is… working in a coffee shop or library is a great way to add some social pressure to your day. You can’t sit playing Sonic the Hedgehog now, because people will think you’re odd!
Speaking of which… coffee works great too!
Try setting yourself small rewards for accomplishing set amounts of work each day. For example, if you finish the first 2,000 words of an essay you’re writing, only then can you give yourself a cup of coffee.
Make the Project Fun
Often we put things off simply because we don’t want to do them. This is why procrastination tends to rear its ugly head more when we are doing particularly dull and dry tasks.
The solution is to find a way to make that task more interesting. For example, you might find a way to gamify it, or you may just find a way to add more creativity to the project.
Finally, make sure you have some proper downtime and fun during your time off. Often we procrastinate because there are other things we want to do. If you never have time to play video games/read books/or browse Facebook, then that will start creeping into your work.
Create a timeline/schedule
After you set your goals, create a timeline to complete them. This could be a schedule for your big project coming up, or it could be mapping out an essay you have to write. Breaking a project into small chunks over time makes it much more manageable.
Get the hard stuff done first
It’s hard to do something that you don’t want to do. But guess what? Once you do it, it’s over! It is best to complete your most challenging projects first. That way, everything after it comes easier and takes a shorter amount of time. If you keep pushing that one thing back, you’re never going to get it done. Just do it.
So actually enjoy your time away from your workplace, and you should find that you enjoy these changes!