Nov 9, 2020
How to overcome procrastination
Show note links:
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In the last episode we talked about what procrastination is, what it’s not and how to find out why you might be doing it. If you haven’t listened to that one yet make sure to go there first.
It’s hugely important to work that stuff out first before you can find the ways of overcoming it that are actually going to work for you because it’s highly individual and some of it hugely deeply rooted.
I promised i’d give you some ways to overcome it once you’ve idenitified the what, the why and the how of YOUR procrastination.
So what can we do in practical terms now we understand more about what’s underpinning the issue?
If you know motivation is the issue.
What’s behind that lack of motivation?
Are you lacking motivation because you’re in the danger zone - it’s a concept from Tony Vee.
If you were to rate your life right now out of 10, where would it be?
Anything 6 or below is actually a GOOD thing, because you’re motivated enough to change things.
Change only happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change. That’s a bastardised Tony Robbins quote for you there.
The danger zone is when you’re around a 7/10. Why?? You’re comfortable being uncomfortable.
You’d love for things to change but you’re not motivated enough to do whatever it takes, this can create a low mood and cognitive dissonance, where you feel like 2 parts of you are battling against each other. Then comes good old procrastination!
You consciously want something but your unconscious is working to make damn sure everything stays the same.
So when you know motivation is at the heart of your procrastination, what can you do? Don’t wait to ‘feel like it’ it’s highly likely to never happen.
Go back to WHY you want to do it in the firstplace. But really WHY. Not a surface level one. So whatever you’ve landed on keep asking, and what does that give me? You’ll soon hit the real reason.
Connect to how you’ll feel once it’s done. This is some of the future you connection.
Connect to the consequences of NOT doing it!
Bribe yourself. We’ve talked about the rewards feeling too far away, what can you do to bring the rewards closer? Create icro goals that have a reward along the way.
Find a better reward than the avoidance gives you.
Motivation follows action.
Use Mel Robbins 5 second rule to 5-4-3-2-1 and start. Give yourself 5 minutes. Tell yourself you’ll do it for 5 minutes. Research shows that 80% of people who start will keep going!
Put things in place to make it as easy as possible. Accountability is your friend!
If I had listened to my MANY excuses when It came to launching The Positive Pants Podcast I would have listened to the ‘I’m no good at tech so there’s no way I can produce my own show’.
I would have listened to the ‘there are already so many amazing podcasts with much bigger names who’d want to listen to mine’ or the ‘I don’t have time’ gremlin, the impostor syndrome (all the inevitable mindset gremlins that come along with stepping outside your comfort zone!)
I just would have not started...because I didn’t know where to start!
I made a commitment to myself that it was going to happen.
I knew it was going to be my ‘thing’ and I knew I would love it. BUT, there were some SERIOUS gremlins to get through first.
So I put structures in place so I could overcome that (you’ll see why that’s so important shortly!).
I paid £700 per month for someone else to set up and produce my show for the first few months but knew it was a crazy monthly outgoing that I didn’t really want to pay for something I COULD do myself if I got over my ego.
I did this so I would then be on the hook to listeners and i’d HAVE to learn AND I was 100% accountable to someone else so I had to get the content across.
I would have to ‘get over myself’ essentially. Get over my ego, my unconscious thoughts, my limiting beliefs and all that lovely stuff.
I started recording them for early access in my group at the same time every week...again, so I was on the hook!
Then once I started getting listeners I was on the hook anyway because people were expecting episodes...and here I am excuse free and over 150 episodes later, over 150k download, often in the top 100 and in your earbuds every week it also being my biggest referrer of clients.
Public accountability is your friend!
So what can you put in place to make it as easy as possible for you? An easy example would also be, if yu want to start running to lay out your clothes at night. If you want to eat better, batch cook your meals. So what can you put in place in your business?
Want a few more tangible tips when overwhelm is at the helm? Gotcha covered.
Change up your environment - Get rid of any distractions, lock your phone in a drawer or put it in another room. Even knowing it’s there is enough to make you reach for it because you get a dopamine hit every single time!
Think about what you can delegate. If it’s outside your zone of genius or you hate doing it, find someone who loves it. Get it off your plate. Then you’re moving forward by stepping back!
Chunk things down and have tangible smaller goals so you can get the easy wins! Make sure you’re working to deadlines. This will help with any overwhelm.
My favourite tip for overwhelm is the scary brain dump to do list so you’re always focusing on 3 things you’re looking to achieve, instead of your entire to do list which will NEVER end. I’ve got a template on my website for this but if you have any questions let me know.
Productive procrastination. If you are in the procrastination zone, you can use a state change technique but find your helpful ways to procrastinate so you’re still getting something done that needs doing and you beat yourself up far less. Think cleaning, clearing (helps with the environment!) walk the dog. But the trick is to put a time on it and agree with yourself that after that time you will do 5 minutes work.
Observe it, recognise it, give yourself some compassion.
Learn to regulate your nervous system so the stress response isn’t so strong. You can use my stressed to success meditation for exactly that. You can grab that at https://bit.ly/stressedtosuccess
Most importantly work out the why and the how for YOUR procrastination.
From YEARS and over 6 figures invested in my education in this space, thousands of hours spent reading or in the classroom and from my own life experiences...I’ve done the hard leg work to work this stuff out.
You have to overcome your unconscious mind. BUT it’s 100%possible