Most of us battle this disease day after day. Our lives are just so full of things we have to do; so many places we need to go. Procrastination can be as devastating to our lives and to our success as any illness we could ever encounter.
Brian Evans has written an excellent article about procrastination. He points out that to cure this disease you have to first admit that you have it.
How Does It Begin?
It's Monday and there is so much to do with so little time. Between work, your spouse, your children, cleaning house, making dinner, your family visits, favorite TV shows, mowing the lawn, balancing the checkbook, going grocery shopping, yadda yadda yadda…
You also know that you have a list of other things to do that can help you make money such as copywriting, testing your marketing, improving your systems, building relationships to help your business, but the “P” word (procrastination) creeps up on you so you decide to put some things off until later. But when is later? A few hours turns into a few days, which turns into a few weeks, which turns into a few months, which turns into a few years, which turns into never. So that initial idea which seemed so important to get done because it would help your business, unfortunately never gets done, all because of the “P” word.
Is There a Cure?
If you thought 4-letter words were bad, think again, because this 15-letter word is much, much worse. It is a dream-stealer, a bankruptcy maker, marriage breaker, a depression inhibitor, a cash flow killer… it's the exact opposite of good. It is one of the worst if not the worst viral plague's to ever effect mankind. It was here since the dawn of time, and will be here until the end. There is no cure to fix this mental disease and unfortunately there never will be. You can't wake up and take a pill for it, you can't go to the gym and sweat it out, you can't even have surgery to fix this problem; it is absolutely untreatable. You are born with the disease, and you will die with the disease. The sad truth is no one is safe from this plague, not you, not me, not anyone.
Despite the fact that there is absolutely no cure for this disease, it CAN be harnessed for good if you allow yourself to look deep enough into the core of it and choose to understand it. This is not easy to do; in fact it is down right impossible for the majority. But, for the minority such as yourself, who are reading this and thinking deeply about it, you have the potential to allow this disease to be your dream maker rather than your dream stealer.
This Is How You Do It
1. First and foremost you have to understand what the “P” word means. Here are some various explanations of it:
- Putting off or delaying or deferring an action to a later time.
- Slowness as a consequence of not getting around to it.
- The counterproductive deferment of actions or tasks to a later time. Psychologists often cite such behavior as a mechanism for coping with the anxiety associated with starting or completing any task or decision.
- The act of postponing, delaying or putting off, especially out of habitual carelessness or laziness.
- To postpone doing what one should be doing.
2. Secondly, you have to admit to yourself that you have the disease. And if you are not sure for any reason, let me help you; you have it. Some people are infected deeper than others, but we all have it. If you are not able to admit this to yourself then you will never be able to harness it for good and it will always beat you, always.
3. Thirdly, you need to make a commitment and set a goal for yourself that you will do what it takes to control and defeat this disease. If not then you can simply allow the disease to control and defeat you. Like EVERYTHING in your life, the choice is yours. You are ultimately your own judge, jury, and executioner in all that you do or don't do.
4. Fourth, you must begin to habitually take awareness of when this disease enters into your daily routine. This involves a little bit of skill but is absolutely attainable. Here's how to do it. You must be open-minded and allow yourself to live your life on two mental frequencies. The first is the normal frequency that you are already living your life on. The second is the frequency that subconsciously studies the first. This involves you being a student of yourself, which requires a personal commitment to examine yourself and take mental notes at all times and not be afraid to be constructively critical, as this is the key to making you better. The more you begin to allow yourself to take awareness of your actions AND your inactions as you live your life, the sooner you'll be able to reach your goal to controlling and defeating the “P” word.
5. The fifth and final step, the most important step, is the maker or breaker of winning or losing against this personal life and dream stealing disease. From your personal studies and awareness of when the “P” word enters your life you must now harness this knowledge and implement that which you have taken awareness of. More simply, once you have recognized that you are about to procrastinate on a business building and improving task then this awareness must be the “light switch” that turns on the actions for implementing NOW when previously you would have procrastinated against the task. Even MORE simply, the “P” word tells you that this is a task that you should be doing. This is why procrastination is GOOD because it informs your subconscious, your “gut” feeling, that you should be doing it.
Therefore with all the tasks on your plate and on your to-do list, those most important tasks and actions that you are having difficulty prioritizing and implementing are the ones that the “P” word will attack first and most often. Do those tasks first always and you will control and defeat this terrible disease.
One final tip, recognize the difference between the short term and long term tasks. Each is equally important and requires equal attention. Do not let the “P” word infect either EVER. If a task is more long term, you must still devote systemized installments of time to this task on a daily basis (weekly max) otherwise this important task will die from procrastination.
Procrastination is a good thing for those of us who know what it means and how to use it and harness it for good. Just like the venom from a snake bite can kill you, this venom also carries the antidote to cure you. The same goes for procrastination.
About the Author
Brian Evans is a best selling author, real estate investment expert, mentor, speaker and information marketer. His flagship book, “How to Make Money in Your Local Real Estate Market,” & best selling book “The New Masters of Real Estate” were both released in 2010. Brian is also the founder of a national real estate investing group called, Ultimate Real Estate Investors, who's motto is: Make Money, Live Wealthy, No Excuses.
This article was originally published by the Glazer-Kennedy Insiders Circle, owned and operated by internationally known marketing personalities Dan Kennedy and Bill Glazer, THE place where truly smart, progressive, aggressive entrepreneurs with a love for marketing, a sincere desire to get rich and richer (with no apologies for doing so), and an optimistic, forward-looking attitude, gather' to exchange and share timely information and “what's working today” strategies and examples. Get Bill Glazer's #1 Bestselling Book, “Outrageous Advertising” for FREE. Click here.
Excellent article on procrastination. It’s tough to overcome, but I agree with you that recognition is one of the key steps to overcoming it.
One thing that I do that works (sometimes) is to set up a reward system for myself. So, when I accomplish a goal that I have I allow myself a reward of something that I like to do.
I am writting a new book and the reward system is working pretty well.
That’s a great idea Terry. I use rewards myself. What is your new book about?