3 effective quick techniques for chronic procrastinators + 1 Bonus at the end

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We don’t beat chronic procrastination., We learn to collaborate with it to reduce it.

And the primary roots are the same: Emotions. 

Emotions are the root, time is the symptom

Example: At work, you are asked to say NO sometimes, but nobody tells you how to overcome your fear to be reprimanded by the boss. 

In school, you are advised to ask for help when you are stuck, but nobody tells you how to overcome the shame to share your weaknesses. 

In a relationship, everyone knows it is essential to communicate, but nobody teaches you how to overcome the fear of becoming alone. 

In entrepreneurship, the first thing some people think about is building a financial projection, when nobody explains how to get rid of your insecurities to get started. 

Because of this kind of contexts, you are prone to delay your actions over and over, even if you have plenty of time, even if you know what needs to be done from a logical perspective. 

That’s why many people mistake goals setting, time management issues with chronic procrastination. Thus chronic procrastinators are offered times management and task clarification tips which don’t work or them. 

The reality is there are not many tools  o into accoun

Which strategy can you use  to taking action despite being on the chronic procrastinator web? Use case: homework at home 

You know you should be doing your homework but you don’t feel like doing it now. 

It is because there exists an inertia which is holding you back at an emotional level (not at a logic level).  

Therefore instead of trying to rely on motivation, you should aim for removing the inertia first. And then the spark will arise itself.

For the spark to arise quickly, you can use one of these 3 techniques that leverage  youremotions to work for you instead of working against you.  

Tactic 1 : Visualization to prevent and cure hard work when you fell unprepared 

Visualise yourself in the process of doing stuff you don’t want to do at leat 1-2 day before taking action. 

Visualization can be done everywhere, to prevent postponing everything and it doesn’t require any physical material. It goes like this: 

When you are thinking about doing something you know you should do and you don’t like it, instead of shifting your mind to something else, do this: 

Step 1 Picture yourself being on the place where you are supposed to be working on that ,  gathering all the material necessary, reflecting on what the first step could be, start executing 

step 2: Imagine how it becomes hard, and it hurts/ feel boring 

step 3: Picture yourself succeeding., experiencing the joy of having accomplishing the task. 

You will be surprised 2 days later that you unconsciously take action effortlessly. You won’t even remember it is because you had performed visualization upfront. 

Tactic 2Free writing and Explicit your emotions to Start 

The resistance that is holding you back from getting started your homework has different layers. The first one is the emotional layer. When you clearly write or talk about what you feel, it removes the destructive power theses emotions embeds. And ideas linked to this topic will start flowing in your mind. 

The more you describe your feeling and state of consciousness, the more this method is effective. Use freewriting or freeself-talk. 

 

Application 

Take a piece of paper and answer each question: (repeat writing or speaking aloud each 12 times) 

1/What do you want to do and what are you doing instead? ( x 12 times) 

  • I want to work on homework Xxx but I am doing activity Yyy instead. 

2/ What are you afraid / ashamed of/ sad for / wondering for? List 3 reasons( x 12 times) 

  • I am afraid it would be hard or  that it might be difficult 
  • I fear that it might take a long time 
  • It fear that i might criticized 

Examples of others sentences that can express your emotions 

  • I am afraid it would be hard/ that it might be difficult 
  • I fear that it might take a long time 
  • It fear that i might  get criticized  
  • I fear the teacher or my friend will laugh at me 
  • I fear that my work won’t be good enough 
  • I am pissed of  that i have too much work to do 
  • I fear that it might request too much focus  
  • I fear that it might be too boring 
  • I regret that i didn’t do it earlier and now i am under pressure again 
  • I fear that i won’t have all the answers to the question 
  • I fear that i won’t understand the topic 
  • I feel angry because  i might note have time to rest a little because of my homework 
  • I feel that unfair that teachers gave so much homework to their students to be done during the holidays 
  • I am ashamed that i  had a bad grade the last time i won’t on it 
  • I wonder if it worth investing too much time 
  • I fear that my family will be disappointed of me if don’t produce great result at my homework. 

Tactic 3Conscious fear generation to when you struggle to restart 

If you struggle to do something, instead of repeating to yourself ” I should do this you should do it”, take a pen and list all the worst consequences that might happen if you don’t act on it. 

Then repeat writing or speaking up the consequences that make you feel uncomfortable . 

The natural behavior for procrastinators is to wait for the last minute when they feel under high pressure. Thus the principle of this method is to generate a sense of urgency voluntary when you seems comfortable. You do so by listing 3 main worst cases scenario that might happen if you don’t do the task at hand now. 

It goes like this 

Step 1: Explicit what you had planned to do and what you did instead. 

Step 2: list the consequence in the short term and the long term until you feel a disagreement, the guilty trick 

Step 3: Repeat the result that made you feel guilty at step_2 at least 12 to 23 times 

What is each step aimed for? 

Step 1 is aimed to make your procrastinator mind acknowledge something is wrong objectively at a logic level. 

Step 2 helps to spot a scenario the procrastinator mind is most afraid or ashamed of. 

Step 3 amplifies this emotion up to a point where Take action becomes an urge.

By the way, you might be even surprised to feel some spark before  the 23th repetition. In that case, creative ideas will pop in up in your mind to help you address the topic you were delaying. 

Application 

What would be the worst consequences if you don’t deliver your homework on time. (  3 worst cases  scenario) (repeat writing or speaking aloud each 12 times) 

  • If I don’t deliver it on time I won’t be able to have good grades to go to the upper level. 
  • I will regret. I will be disappointed by myself. 
  • I won’t be able to apply to some universities. Will have less opportunities 
  • I won’t achieve my responsibilities as student 
  • will waste the money my parents are spending on me 
  • I won’t be prepared for the exams coming 
  • I will be jealous to see my classmates getting good grades 

Bonus :  Worst case acceptation to get rid of perfectionism when you struggle to start / restart / finish 

There is a another obstacle you need to take care about from the short term view; your hesitation due to perfectionism 

  • What are other people (the teacher, my friend, my parents) going to think about my homework? 
  • Am I good enough? 
  • Am I going to look as a failure? 
  • Would I craft the best answer? 
  • Would I handle the humuliation?

These are common questions that show up in your mind and hold you back from the beginning.

Behind your perfectionism are fear of shame of getting criticized, getting rejected, fear of failure, fear of judgment. THis combines and make you feel insucureThere a two quick fix for that: 

Step 1: Focus on the value you add to others 

Step 2: Repeat that you accept consequences of failing as a possibility 

Application 

Step 1: Answer this questions and use visualization to narrow down your focus on the value 

Why are you here for? What aren’t you here for?(repeat writing or speaking aloud each 12 times) 

    • I am here to solve that problem for me move forward. 
    • I am not here to be liked. I am not here to feel smart. I am not here to please my classmate/ friends/ teacher 

Then visualize yourself delivering. Cut down the validation you expect from others mentally 

Step 2Repeat that you accept failure as a possibility 

What might happen if you don’t deliver well, if make mistakes  

    • The audience mind think I am an imposter 
    • They mind launch at me 
    • I won’t be able to endure the humiliation 
    • They will discovered I don’t know the subject very well 

Then use selt talk. speak out loud that you accept consequences in case of failure might happen 

    • I accept that my delivery might include some mistake 
    • the goal is to complete the task not to make it perfect. 
    • I accept my friend will laugh at me … because I didn’t find the solution 
    • I accept my teacher might be disappointed because I could find the solution might  
    • I accept my classmate my think I am doom because the exercise is easy for most the students 

That’ it , Now It is your turn.

There is No point to talk about the long term if you can’t make the short term Hapen.

I challenge you to try it out with  any activity you find daunting Now.


Heudou Tchihikou Aubin 

A master chronic procrastinator who chose to execute on his dreams because of frustration and self-criticism

 

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3 Comments

  1. Thanks for sharing !!!

    1. YOu are welcome 🙂

  2. Very important to accept things I try to move forward

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