lunes, 15 de septiembre de 2014

Overcoming Procrastination

Everybody has experienced at least once in their lives that they want to “do” things they are supposed to do “for tomorrow” instead of today. At the beginning, this could only be a signal of stress, tiredness or even laziness but, when the pattern repeats almost – not to say always – everyday and, in every task in our lives is called as procrastination. Procrastination is known as the habit of delaying activities or situations which have to be attended, replacing them by other kind of situations or activities that we consider more enjoyable. The problem with this disorder is that is becoming more common in our society and people in high positions, involving  a lot of stressful tasks to do, are experiencing it more a more daily. There are many ways to overcome procrastination, the most common ways people recommend are: Break a long project into short tasks, make a list and make up your own rewards.
One of the most common advices psychologist give to overcome procrastination is breaking a long project into short tasks that you can easily do in short periods of time. Procrastinating people tend to be overwhelmed by the size of an important task and try to avoid it. To evade this situation we can break this significant project into small tasks that are easy to do day by day. For example, if your project is a report, you can write it down page by page or item by item and by the time you have to summit it, you will have it ready without realizing how hard it was. Also, if the project is renewing your garden you can start by taking out the old plans and localize them in other part of the garden, then you can set the soil to receive the new plants and, start planting them the next day. At first of course your garden will look terrible but, because you are doing everything in small steps it will be easier for you to keep going. Always keep your project in mind and use that as a motivation to continue doing it every day until you finish.
Another way to overcome procrastination is making a list. The famous “to-do list” is one of the most frequent tools people use to organize themselves when they have a lot of things to do. A “to-do list” will help you to see clearly your different tasks while being organized by importance or period of time. Also, helps you to not forget some tasks that your mind wants to forget because they are too big for you do them.  You can set your “to-do list” as pleasant as you want thus, when you see it, it won’t be overwhelming. You might think is good to separate the things into personal, work and study or, you might find it more pleasant to separate them by size (remember to always break down the big project into small steps). Priority has to be present in your list; this will help you to know what you have to do first. A student can make a “to-do list” of each one of his courses, for example, while a secretary might separate them by job and housework. The important thing about the “to-do list” is that you need to keep going, it means, as you finish one task go to another one.
Finally, but not less importantly, another way to overcome procrastination is to make up your own rewards. Let’s say you want to renew your garden; as it is stated in the second paragraph, you break down the project into small tasks but how to keep going until you finish? Making your own rewards could make you finish because you will have something you will give to yourself for finishing this project. It can be anything that you want, go to the movies with your friends or even make a small gather in your garden thus they can see what you have done in your garden. When we set up a goal that we want to accomplish, we can also set what we want to get from that goal and, depending on how hard it will be to achieve we can also set a reward for doing it. For example, if you want to lose weight your project will be eat healthier and going to the gym but, most of us tend to say “I’ll start my diet tomorrow” or “I’ll go to gym tomorrow”. Set a reward, buy a beautiful suit of the size you want to be and then set a date for wearing it. You will see how hard you work because of that.

Even without realizing, Procrastination is becoming a common disorder nowadays because of the multiple ways people get stress from outside sources. That is why it is important to always remember that we have to make ourselves comfortable with the way we do our duties, personal o professional, because they represent what we want to our lives. There are many other ways to overcome Procrastination but, this three are the most common ones. 
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