3 Myths They Told You About Procrastination

Let’s be honest. Everybody procrastinates. I do not know anyone who has not put off things in their life ever.

It’s not an issue when you do it occasionally. But it can grow into a serious problem when it gets a habit to put things off. When you do it often and it ties you for long stretches of your valuable time. This can lead to dramatic consequences in life, like loss of a job, a relationship or loss of money.

 

How do I know?

Because I have been there before. At least in part.

In their intention to overcome procrastination, people try a lot of things. Many approaches are ineffective because they are based on myths.

And know what, it can really hurt when others don’t understand you. When they think you only put things off for fun. For laziness. When you hear them say “I would not do this, it’s stupid”.

I’d say “F*** off! I know that!”

Now, don’t take the route of self-pity, self-blame and thinking you are too stupid.

Better let’s clear …

3 Myths About Procrastination

Myth No. 1 – You just have to grit your teeth and do your best

That is totally wrong. Only people who don’t suffer from real procrastination can claim this. Sure, from outside it seems people who put things off only have to get started. They must just move and do their things better. If it only were that simple, no one would have to suffer from chronic procrastination.

Truth is, there is rather an inner force that steals energy. That eats away motivation and drive. And it is beyond direct control. Shear willpower and discipline are not enough. You must understand the underlying causes of your drain of energy to tackle procrastination.

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Myth No. 2 – Procrastination Stems From Poor Time Management

Well, no. It’s nothing to do with time management. I know people who organize and plan their day perfectly. They have thought through everything and have a clear to-do list. From seeing their plan you would think they are big achievers. However, they can not start or keep doing the tasks.

Procrastination rather has to do with poor self-management. It’s about knowing yourself and understanding your emotions, inner resources and abilities. And it is about knowing which triggers and levers to pull to switch your inner state.

It is also about knowing what holds you back. And this is often not obvious. The lack of drive often stems from being overwhelmed for example by the amount of work or the difficulty. Overwhelm is the perceived gap between own resources and the demand of a task. With emphasis on “perceived”. Imagination barely matches reality. There are people working till they collapse. And there are people who are paralyzed and can not get going.

Myth No. 3. – It’s In Your Genes, You Cannot Do Anything About It

Current science realizes that many traits are in part genetically and in part caused by circumstances. While the case for procrastination is not 100% resolved, it is clear that your conditions play a major role.

If you have cold and demanding parents, chances are that you are a procrastinator. This makes a genetic component rather unlikely.

You don’t believe me? At first glance it looks when, say, your father demands a lot of you, you should tend to give a lot and therefore develop diligence and discipline. The problem is, this demand can lead to the feeling of overwhelm.

When at the same time your father is emotionally cold and spares praise, you may have learned that you never did enough. That you must work even harder. With time you feel you never work good enough. Then instead of getting it done quickly and taking on the next to-do, you feel you are not finished.

When having the courage to close a task you received no positive feedback. This may have trained your inner belief that you are too bad and most tasks are just too difficult. On top of that, without you taking notice, you avoid doing a task because you “learned” that it has negative consequences most of the time.

You see, this root cause of procrastination is a highly emotional and socially trained adaptation. No genes or hereditary fate involved.

The good news is, while you cannot change your genes you can change your habits and inner beliefs. But you can not take the route of the common myths.

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10 Things to Obey to Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions

Wondering how to finally keep your New Year’s Resolutions? These 10 Tips Will Make The Job Easier For You.

“Dates that come around every year help us measure progress in our lives. One annual event, New Year’s Day, is a time of reflection and resolution.” – Joseph B. Wirthlin

So you’ve already jotted down your new year’s resolutions, but will you keep them? Statistics generally show that most people give up on their resolutions even before the first quarter of the year lapses. The main reason for this trend is that in most cases we fail to focus on moving from planning to execution. But it doesn’t have to be that way moving forward. Here are some tips on how to keep New Year’s resolutions in 2018 and beyond.

1. Keep them Simple and Realistic

The secret is to avoid aiming too high to an extent that you end up procrastinating on your goals. Simply put, don’t be over-ambitious. Take a positive approach and keep your goals specific, measurable, attainable and realistic (SMART). It’s always a good idea to focus on clear short-term goals keeping in mind that it’s the little things you do that matter in the long-run.

“My New Year’s Resolution List usually starts with the desire to lose between ten and three thousand pounds.” – Nia Vardalos

2. Make your Resolutions Public

That’s right. You are more likely to keep your new year’s resolutions if you share them with friends and family. Just look for people who have proved to be trustworthy and explain your goals to them. You should let them know how they can support you so you can stick to your goals.

3. Have a Time Frame

Having a time frame will keep you motivated. You can choose to have a calendar or diary so you can easily plan your actions. But make sure you set realistic time frames to avoid frustrations.

4. Reward Yourself

Give yourself a reward for every milestone (no matter how small) you make. This will keep you motivated and looking forward to the next challenge. Yup, rewards work like magic. For instance, when you have achieved a certain fitness goal, why not reward yourself with your favorite food that you have been avoiding for weeks? Just make sure the rewards you choose don’t work against your resolutions.

5. Don’t be too Quick to Give Up

In most cases, people often give up on their resolutions when they make just a single slip up. To be honest, slip-ups are almost inevitable at some point. Therefore, when it happens, you must not allow them to become an excuse to give up on your goals. Simply forgive yourself and move on.

6. Keep Track of your Progress

Tracking your progress ensures you keep your resolutions fresh in your mind. Just like Jerry Seinfield, use a calender to check off each daily success step. Put it up at a prominent place to keep you reminded. Or use a smartphone app, maybe one with an alarm.

7. Have an AccountabilityPartner

You can even have an accountability partner. This can be your buddy, workmate, soulmate or simply anyone you’d be comfortable sharing your progress with. The fact that you have somebody to report to will naturally give you the impetus to follow up on your promises.


8. Be your Own Cheerleader

The resolutions you make will be under your control. While it is good to seek support from other people, you should not rely too heavily on them. Being your own cheerleader will give you the motivation to stick to your plans.

9. Revise your Goals

Don’t be a prisoner of your own choices. You can tweak your resolutions as you see fit in case something is not working. You can do this weekly or monthly. Who knows, you might find your original goal was not quite realistic after all.

“If you asked me for my New Year Resolution, it would be to find out who I am.” – Cyril Cusack

10. Be Specific

You have got to set specific goals because vague goals never work. The more specific you are with your resolutions, the easier it will be to achieve them while remaining accountable. For instance, if you want to shed some weight, target the precise number of pounds you would like to shed. You can say, “I want to lose 10 pounds by April” or “I want to start lifting 4-pound dumbbells by mid-year” and so forth. Being specific enables you to plan your schedule accordingly.

“In fact, my New Year’s resolution every year, and I’m Jewish so I get two New Years a year, is to meditate, and I fail every time.”
– Sheryl Sandberg

Conclusion

Sure, sticking to your new year’s resolutions is not always easy. But no matter what your resolutions are, the above tips will help you achieve them.


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Science of Motivation

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Ultimate Procrastination Checklist

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How To Fire Up Your Inner Drive

It happens to all of us. One day, we just wake up lacking the energy to do anything. Not wanting to go out of bed, not wanting to stay in it either. That’s normal. That’s the stuff of life, so to speak.

What is not normal though is getting entangled with lack of energy, lack of drive, lack of motivation. What is not normal is to continuously talk yourself into the act of not doing anything.

But what do you do when all the drive inside of you are purged out? Maybe you can begin with the following recommendations.

Think of the worst-case scenario – We have all been told that envisioning success is a good motivator. Now, why not do the exact opposite?

Why not envision a future that is bleak, hopeless and stripped off all happiness and success. Why not envision yourself living eternally in a rut where sense of accomplishment and a tiny hope are inexistent?

Scary, right? Few people realize that they already own a one-way ticket towards this very vision. Now what you want to do is to get off your butt and work your way out of the train wreck you are heading to. Turn your life around and work for a goal. Now, that is getting motivated.

Set a date for change and commit to it – Change must come to everyone of us. Sometimes it is forced upon us, sometimes we choose when it will happen. It is always much more preferable to have control over the change that can take us over.

If the change you are seeking requires a specific date on the calendar, then set it. Make a huge, red circle around the date and stick with it. Let this serve as a motivator to start doing the things you should have done weeks, months or years ago. Let this chosen date serve as the new beginning of your life.

Break the routine – When you’re doing the same thing every day, sooner or later, the energy that you once had will drain out.

No matter how passionate you were with your work, project, or goal when you were just beginning, you will suffer from lack of motivation once your body senses that it is doing the same thing day in, day out.

Don’t be afraid to break the routine once in a while. Quit work for a full day. Stop doing your routine for a week. Take a month-long vacation. Take on a new hobby for a year. These can help energize you and rekindle your drive. And while you’re taking your break from your routine, don’t lose the faith that you will have the same kind of energy you once had by the time you get back to work.

Don’t lose sight of your goals – It is easy to lose your focus when there is too much distraction around. Whether it’s the kids, clutter at your work area, Twitter or Facebook, you will find that these simple things remind you of other things that can drive your concentration away from the task at hand.

To prevent yourself from killing your own motivation, always try to stick with your goals and shut out whatever it is that it trying to reduce it.

Statistics show that about 41% of people have experienced financial loss due to procrastination.
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Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.

 

Success Stories Of Great People And Inspiring Leaders

Thomas Alva Edison is one of America’s most famous inventors.

Edison saw huge change take place in his lifetime. He was responsible for making many of those changes occur.

(c) wikicommons.org, Louis Bachrach, Bachrach Studios, restored by Michel Vuijlsteke
(c) wikicommons.org, Louis Bachrach, Bachrach Studios, restored by Michel Vuijlsteke

His inventions created and contributed to modern night lights, movies, telephones, records and CDs. Edison was truly a genius.

His secret sauce to success was: mastery in failing over and over again. Until he finally figured things out.

 

Edison is most famous for his development of the first electric light bulb.

When Edison was born, electricity had not been developed. By the time he died, entire cities were lit by electricity.

Much of the credit for electricity goes to Edison.

(c) Richard Warren Lipack, wikimedia.org
(c) Richard Warren Lipack, wikimedia.org

Some of his inventions were improvements on other inventions, like the telephone.

Some of his inventions he deliberately tried to invent, like the light bulb and the movie projector.

But some inventions he stumbled upon, like the phonograph. Of all his inventions, Edison was most proud of the phonograph.

 

Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize
how close they were to success when they gave up.

 

Edison invented and improved upon things that transformed our world.

Some things he invented by himself. Some things he invented with other people.

Acoustics: an Edison wax cylinder recorder. Wood engraving. (c) wikimedia.org, Wellcome Images
Acoustics: an Edison wax cylinder recorder. Wood engraving. (c) wikimedia.org, Wellcome Images

Just about all his inventions are things we still use in some form today. Throughout his life, Edison tried to invent things that everyone could use.
Edison created the world’s first “invention factory”.

He and his partners invented, built and shipped the product – all in the same complex. This was a new way to do business.

I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.

 

Today many businesses have copied Edison’s invention factory design.
A business friend once asked Edison about the secret to his success.

Edison replied, “Genius is hard work, stick-to-itiveness, and common sense”.

But his “common sense” was very uncommon.

More patents were issued to Edison than have been issued to any other single person in U.S. history: 1,093.

 

Statistics show that about 41% of people have experienced financial loss due to procrastination.
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