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8 Steps To Get Yourself Away From Procrastination

8 Steps To Get Yourself Away From Procrastination

For many of us, the stresses and strains of life, in general, can be too much to handle. There is simply so much to think about along the way that getting to where you want to be can be hard work. Procrastination, as ever, becomes a significant problem along the way and can leave you chasing your tail a little bit. Getting away from handling a heavy workload is tough as that massive scale can make you only take on small increments as time goes on.

It’s not always an indicator of your ability – or lack of – but usually of an ability to stay focused and committed to getting the job done. When this happens, you need to be able to move heaven and earth to get yourself moving towards dropping procrastination from your life of problems for good. If you need help in breaking free of the grip of procrastination and never getting anything done, then this should offer the perfect solutions to you by making sure that you try and;

1. Set The Right Goals

The first thing you need to think about is setting the right goals. You might be looking at the end-game as the “right” goal. But, this is the wrong way to look at things. Instead, you need to look and find the best way for you to start building towards the goal. It’s not always about getting to the endgame, but making progress towards that. If you need to look at the goal in smaller increments, then it can help you stop procrastinating as the task feels less gargantuan in size. To minimize procrastination time, set yourself a deadline of 48hrs to work out what the right goals are.

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2. Identify The Motivating Factors 

When we have a motivation to continue to push on even when we feel tired, it can make procrastination a lot easier to overcome. However, this takes a lot of hard work and self-determination to manage, so it will take a considerable amount of work on your end to get to this point. Take a half day or half night and work out what is driving you, why it’s driving you, and how you can make the most of that situation in the near future. Just having a reason which motivates you can be so useful to ensuring that things actually get done.

3. Create a Concrete Action Plan for the Final Goal

How are you going to achieve what you intended to? Do you have a concrete plan for doing so? If not, you need one. When you don’t know how to go about something, it’s a lot harder to actually convince yourself to try and do it. To avoid this problem, you just need to start taking a few hours per day to work out the path to success. Break it down into a small army of minor tasks that can be achieved on an hourly or daily basis. This keeps you moving towards the grand endgame, which is so incredibly useful to understand.

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4. Create a To-Do List for the Day

Now we have a plan to work with and will be able to start moving towards something fresh and innovative in our lives, we need to start looking at building a To-Do list. Making a serious to-do list to follow is as important as seeing through all your objectives. Start by simply creating something that follows the Why, How and When pattern above. In no time at all, this will be built up with a structured list of tasks that can pay massive dividends when you are trying to start moving the project towards overall completion.

5. Set the Timer

How will you go about dealing with the procrastination side of things? You need to have a start date and a start time. Set strict deadlines that fit in with your personal and professional life and ensure that you adhere to them. Meeting targets in this fashion is great for your confidence and for helping you improve as an individual, in the long run, so make sure that you always consider this in your unique battle against procrastination.

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6. Commit Yourself to the Plan

It is essential to follow a schedule in order to be fully accountable to your process and move forward towards progress. When you have clarity, a plan, and a way of going about that plan it becomes so much easier to manage and prepare yourself to do the job that you are being asked to carry out. Remember that avoiding tasks because you could not remember you had to do them, is also called procrastination!

7. Find Supporters

You need to be able to shut off that voice in your head that tells you to come back tomorrow, and the best way to do that is with all of the above. To get the help that you need with self-discipline, find some supporters. Share your goals and plans with people who you know will support and motivate you. It is important that you find the right cheerleaders as the wrong ones will actually pull you down and demotivate you.

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8. Keep on Trying

As always, improving on any areas of your life is not an easy task. Make sure that even if you sometimes fail (even more often than you expected) you should keep on trying, no matter what. Be strong and accomplish your objectives. Remember, do not procrastinate!

Featured photo credit: www.neednudge.com via neednudge.com

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Last Updated on September 20, 2018

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

8 Ways to Train Your Brain to Learn Faster and Remember More

You go to the gym to train your muscles. You run outside or go for hikes to train your endurance. Or, maybe you do neither of those, but still wish you exercised more.

Well, here is how to train one of the most important parts of your body: your brain.

When you train your brain, you will:

  • Avoid embarrassing situations. You remember his face, but what was his name?
  • Be a faster learner in all sorts of different skills. No problem for you to pick up a new language or new management skill.
  • Avoid diseases that hit as you get older. Alzheimer’s will not be affecting you.

So how to train your brain and improve your cognitive skills?

1. Work your memory

Twyla Tharp, a NYC-based renowned choreographer has come up with the following memory workout:

When she watches one of her performances, she tries to remember the first twelve to fourteen corrections she wants to discuss with her cast without writing them down.

If you think this is anything less than a feat, then think again. In her book The Creative Habit she says that most people cannot remember more than three.

The practice of both remembering events or things and then discussing them with others has actually been supported by brain fitness studies.

Memory activities that engage all levels of brain operation—receiving, remembering and thinking—help to improve the function of the brain.

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Now, you may not have dancers to correct, but you may be required to give feedback on a presentation, or your friends may ask you what interesting things you saw at the museum. These are great opportunities to practically train your brain by flexing your memory muscles.

What is the simplest way to help yourself remember what you see? Repetition.

For example, say you just met someone new:

“Hi, my name is George”

Don’t just respond with, “Nice to meet you”. Instead, say, “Nice to meet you George.”

Got it? Good.

2. Do something different repeatedly

By actually doing something new over and over again, your brain wires new pathways that help you do this new thing better and faster.

Think back to when you were three years old. You surely were strong enough to hold a knife and a fork just fine. Yet, when you were eating all by yourself, you were creating a mess.

It was not a matter of strength, you see. It was a matter of cultivating more and better neural pathways that would help you eat by yourself just like an adult does.

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And guess what? With enough repetition you made that happen!

But how does this apply to your life right now?

Say you are a procrastinator. The more you don’t procrastinate, the more you teach your brain not to wait for the last minute to make things happen.

Now, you might be thinking “Duh, if only not procrastinating could be that easy!”

Well, it can be. By doing something really small, that you wouldn’t normally do, but is in the direction of getting that task done, you will start creating those new precious neural pathways.

So if you have been postponing organizing your desk, just take one paper and put in its right place. Or, you can go even smaller. Look at one piece of paper and decide where to put it: Trash? Right cabinet? Another room? Give it to someone?

You don’t actually need to clean up that paper; you only need to decide what you need to do with it.

That’s how small you can start. And yet, those neural pathways are still being built. Gradually, you will transform yourself from a procrastinator to an in-the-moment action taker.

3. Learn something new

It might sound obvious, but the more you use your brain, the better its going to perform for you.

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For example, learning a new instrument improves your skill of translating something you see (sheet music) to something you actually do (playing the instrument).

Learning a new language exposes your brain to a different way of thinking, a different way of expressing yourself.

You can even literally take it a step further, and learn how to dance. Studies indicate that learning to dance helps seniors avoid Alzheimer’s. Not bad, huh?

4. Follow a brain training program

The Internet world can help you improve your brain function while lazily sitting on your couch. A clinically proven program like BrainHQ can help you improve your memory, or think faster, by just following their brain training exercises.

5. Work your body

You knew this one was coming didn’t you? Yes indeed, exercise does not just work your body; it also improves the fitness of your brain.

Even briefly exercising for 20 minutes facilitates information processing and memory functions. But it’s not just that–exercise actually helps your brain create those new neural connections faster. You will learn faster, your alertness level will increase, and you get all that by moving your body.

Now, if you are not already a regular exerciser, and already feel guilty that you are not helping your brain by exercising more, try a brain training exercise program like Exercise Bliss.

Remember, just like we discussed in #2, by training your brain to do something new repeatedly, you are actually changing yourself permanently.

6. Spend time with your loved ones

If you want optimal cognitive abilities, then you’ve got to have meaningful relationships in your life.  Talking with others and engaging with your loved ones helps you think more clearly, and it can also lift your mood.

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If you are an extrovert, this holds even more weight for you. At a class at Stanford University, I learned that extroverts actually use talking to other people as a way to understand and process their own thoughts.

I remember that the teacher told us that after a personality test said she was an extrovert, she was surprised. She had always thought of herself as an introvert. But then, she realized how much talking to others helped her frame her own thoughts, so she accepted her new-found status as an extrovert.

7. Avoid crossword puzzles

Many of us, when we think of brain fitness, think of crossword puzzles. And it’s true–crossword puzzles do improve our fluency, yet studies show they are not enough by themselves.

Are they fun? Yes. Do they sharpen your brain? Not really.

Of course, if you are doing this for fun, then by all means go ahead. If you are doing it for brain fitness, then you might want to choose another activity

8. Eat right – and make sure dark chocolate is included

Foods like fish, fruits, and vegetables help your brain perform optimally. Yet, you might not know that dark chocolate gives your brain a good boost as well.

When you eat chocolate, your brain produces dopamine. And dopamine helps you learn faster and remember better. Not to mention, chocolate contains flavonols, antioxidants, which also improve your brain functions.

So next time you have something difficult to do, make sure you grab a bite or two of dark chocolate!

The bottom line

Now that you know how to train your brain, it’s actually time to start doing.

Don’t just consume this content and then go on with your life as if nothing has changed. Put this knowledge into action and become smarter than ever!

Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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