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5 Simple Ways to Stop Procrastinating for Good

5 Simple Ways to Stop Procrastinating for Good

Procrastination is a dream killer. The goals, desires, and dreams we have can become reality once we overcome our procrastination. In this post, we’ll share 5 simple ways you can stop procrastinating for good.

1. Forgive yourself

As humans, we can’t expect ourselves to be perfect all the time. There will be times when we slip and fall, and instead of letting one moment bring us down, we should forgive ourselves and move on.

The language we use is often key here, and most of us are harder on ourselves than we think. While it’s important to have high expectations for ourselves, it can also be damaging.

Instead of saying “I’m so lazy…”, try saying “I’m just human, and even the most successful people have bad days.”

Instead of “I’m probably not going to succeed…”, try saying “I’m going to give it my best shot, and in the worst case scenario, I’ll still be fine.”

2. Prepare the night before

Studies have shown that humans have a finite amount of willpower, and procrastination usually comes from lack of motivation.

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Preparing for our day the night before allows us to take action from the moment we wake up, instead of being in reaction mode. This is because planning can take up a significant amount of energy that should be used to get important tasks done instead.

The method of preparing will vary from person to person, but my personal favorite is to schedule my day using a digital calendar, like Google Calendar.

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    For others, it could be creating a to-do list or simply working on the most important task for the day. Whatever your method, it’s important that you have some level of structure to your day planning.

    3. Say “No” more

    What we say “No” to in our life will determine the quality of the work we do. It’s impossible to take on every opportunity that comes at us, and it’s critical that we have a framework for prioritizing our everyday decisions.

    At Rype, we use a framework called the Eisenhower Matrix to make many of our decisions.

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    Here’s a plan of action for each quadrant:

    1. Urgent & Important: Do it immediately.
    2. Non-Urgent & Important: Decide when you’ll do it.
    3. Urgent & Non-Important: Delegate to someone else.
    4. Non-Urgent & Non-Important: Do it later.

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      4. Discover your “ONE Thing”

      Most activities that we do during our day, week, or month, have little impact on our end result.

      I’ve been personally guilty of this, trying to fill up my schedule with “busy” work instead of work that matters. The result was that I eventually burned out with very few results to show at the end of the day.

      Then I discovered the “ONE Thing,” which was introduced by the bestselling author Gary Keller. The “ONE Thing” is described as the one activity or task that will make everything else easier or unnecessary.

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        If you want to get in shape, you can go for a run every morning instead of trying out every different diet system that is advertised on TV.

        If you want to grow your business, you can increase your prices and focus your efforts on the 20% of clients bringing you 80% of sales instead of pleasing everyone.

        If you want to learn a new language, you can find a professional teacher who can work with you one-on-one instead of learning from books, Youtube videos, mobile apps, etc.

        5. Follow the 2-minute rule

        Most of us have probably experienced a cliffhanger moment on TV. It’s that moment where something unexpected or exciting happens, and before you get to the conclusion, the episode ends.

        It turns out that Hollywood has been leveraging what’s called the Zeigarnik Effect, which was named after the psychologist Bluma Zeigarnik.

        The Zeigarnik Effect states that once we start something without finishing it, we have a natural tendency to finish what we started. Studies also show that our perception of the task changes after we start, and we often end up enjoying the task.

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        This is why the 2-minute rule is powerful. By simply starting a task, even for 2-minutes, it’s likely that we’ll continue what we started or end up finishing it at a later time.

        If you want to read more books, read the first few pages and you’ll likely end up reading for hours.

        If you want to get healthier, just get to the gym and you’ll probably work out for an hour.

        If you want to learn Spanish, find a professional teacher online and you’ll be motivated to learn every week.

        Over to you

        What’s the one thing you’re procrastinating on? Which of these strategies will you use to take action?

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        Sean Kim

        Sean is the founder and CEO of Rype, a language learning app. He's an entrepreneur and blogger.

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        Last Updated on May 28, 2020

        18 Best Time Management Apps and Tools (2020 Updated)

        18 Best Time Management Apps and Tools (2020 Updated)

        No one can dispute the countless benefits technology has brought us. Undoubtedly, it has allowed us to connect, perform, improve, and leverage our resources beyond what was once imaginable.

        If you’re not taking advantage of some of the hundreds of time management apps and tools out there, you’re definitely missing a trick.

        But with so many apps to choose from, how do you know which ones to use?

        Well, this will depend on your needs. That’s why we’ve put together a list of 18 of the best time management apps that can help you with the most common challenges of managing time.

        Let’s dive straight into the list.

        1. Rescue Time – Use Your Time Wisely

          If you have doubts if you are using your time sensibly, this app will send you weekly reports to indicate what things are stealing your time. Aside from its automatic time-tracking feature, this app also has distraction blocking and efficient report tools.

          RescueTime helps you avoid being overwhelmed by too many tasks. This app also has a team software that’s dedicated to time management among team members. With this app, you may be shocked to discover how much time you’re actually wasting.

          Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

          2. Remember The Milk – Keep on Top of All Your Tasks

            If you’re struggling to manage everything you have to do, and you work with many different devices, then this is the app for you. It’s a great free tool that is compatible with your mobile, computer, Gmail, Outlook, etc., and it allows you to sync all your devices for easier time management.

            This app will help you to manage your tasks easily and reminds you of them – wherever you are. You can share tasks and lists with others, making it a great tool for teams as well.

            Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

            3. Focus Keeper – Boost Motivation to Complete Tasks

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              This app is based on the principles of the Pomodoro Technique, and it is aimed at individuals who procrastinate and feel overwhelmed by tasks. It has a simple, efficient user interface that is easily customizable based on your needs.

              Focus Keeper is designed to enhance your focus and remove any anxiety you might have with time pressures. This is a great app to use if you want to prevent yourself and your team from being burned out.

              Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

              4. Toggl – Keep Track of Time Spent on Projects and Tasks

                Effective time management starts with being clear on exactly how much time you actually spend on your projects and tasks and through analysis – working out how you can manage them more effectively. Toggl allows you to do all this even with its simple design.

                Toggl includes great time-saving features integrated with its intuitive interface. This is a great alternative to time-sheets if you need to track how much time you spend on different projects.

                Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                5. Dropbox – Store and Send Large Files Easily

                  There are many apps that allow you to transfer content from your computer to other devices, but Dropbox is free and it is easier to use than the others. With the Dropbox app, you can even access and share important files on the go. It is an easy way to share your files and documents with others for improved productivity.

                  Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                  6. Evernote – Keep All Your Notes in One Place

                    Evernote is a free productivity tool that allows you to capture all your ideas, thoughts, and images in many different ways (e.g., with voice, notes, or images). You can even record your meetings, interviews, speeches, and ideas, create lists, add voice or text attachments, and share your files with friends. You can also sync Remember The Milk with Evernote to better optimize your time.

                    Available iOS, Android, and Desktop

                    7. MindNode — Focus on Tasks at Hand With Mind Mapping

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                      Mind mapping is a great productivity technique, and Mindnode is one of the best free mind mapping apps available. It helps you to become more organized by focusing your thoughts – thereby gaining clarity on what needs to be done.

                      This app allows you to customize various visual tags and templates to suit your needs. You can also easily share your documents with others.

                      Available on iOS and Desktop

                      8. GoodSync – Back Up and Sync Your Files Effortlessly

                        This software allows you to back up, restore, and synchronize your files easily. It supports folders from a variety of locations, and it has filtering options that let you exclude subfolders from synchronizing.

                        This app also allows you to sync files to and from your phone. If you have never backed up your files before, you should definitely take a look at this tool.

                        Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                        9. MyLifeOrganized (MLO) – Manage Your To-Do Lists Effectively

                          Check this out if you find it difficult to manage all your tasks, work with your to-do lists, and organize your goals. This task management software helps you target what you should be focusing on to reach your objectives.

                          MyLifeOrganized is one of the best task management apps for focused work. It automatically generates to-do lists with priority actions for your immediate attention so that you can track your progress methodically.

                          Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                          10. 1Password – Have All Your Passwords Remembered

                            1Password allows you to keep all your passwords in one encrypted database – protected by one password. This saves you time when you forget your passwords and need to retrieve them. This also allows you to use various passwords for different accounts so you don’t compromise on security.

                            Available iOS, Android, and Desktop

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                            11. Pocket – Keep Your Eye on the Ball

                              When you’re surfing the web, it’s easy to get distracted by enticing and fascinating websites. That’s why you need effective time management apps like Pocket. You can use this tool to save your ‘finds’ to access and read later on at a convenient time. This prevents you from getting distracted and negatively impacting your immediate work.

                              Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                              12. Focus@Will – Boost Your Attention Span

                                This amazing app combines neuroscience and music to boost your productivity. According to the developers, it’s possible to increase your attention span by up to 400% using Focus@Will, making this one of the best time management apps available.

                                Focus@will is ideal for those who find it difficult to focus while studying, working, or reading. It also helps you control your ADD.

                                Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                                13. Alfred – Interact With Your Computer in a Smart Way

                                  This small and simple tool allows you to launch your documents, project files, folders, and bookmarks with just a few keystrokes. This makes life so much easier as you don’t need to go through the start menu to access what you want. The only downside is that it’s only available for macOS.

                                  Available on desktop (macOS)

                                  14. Forest – Boost Your Focus by Growing a Forest

                                    Forest is a unique reinvention of time management apps. This unique and fun app helps you stay focused and on-track by making you focus on another thing.

                                    The concept is simple: whenever you want to focus, plant a virtual tree. If you stay focused, the tree will grow. If you lose focus, the tree will die. As the app’s name implies, you can grow multiple trees to create a virtual forest!

                                    Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop (Firefox Add-on)

                                    15. Trello – Track Your projects in a highly visual way

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                                      Trello is a hugely popular app that you may already be familiar with. It works by allowing you to create cards for tasks that you need to complete. Each card moves across the Trello board, which is typically broken into columns such as To Do, In Progress, and Completed. This serves as your cue to start working on and completing the associated tasks.

                                      Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                                      16. Quire – Unfold Your Ideas

                                        Quire is an innovative time management app that helps boost your team’s productivity. The strength of this app lies in its features for collaboration and ease of sharing. You can streamline and adjust your workflow based on your team’s needs and preferences.

                                        Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                                        17. TimeTree – Have a Shared Calendar With Your Family

                                          This TimeTree app allows families or teams to share multiple calendars and appointments with each other. So, whether you’re planning a party or running a local sports team, Time Tree can keep everyone up-to-date with all current and upcoming activities and events.

                                          Available on iOS and Android

                                          18. Todoist – Capture and Order All Your Tasks and Activities Easily

                                            Todoist is close to being the ultimate digital to-do list and one of the best time management apps out there. It’s available via browser and app, and it lets you schedule all your tasks and activities. Each item can be flagged for priority as well as a given due date. There is also a neat option to add notes to any of your tasks.

                                            Available on iOS, Android, and Desktop

                                            Final Thoughts

                                            The above list covers what we consider to be the very best time management apps and tools available. And the good news is that many of them are completely free of charge!

                                            So, what are you waiting for? Select the ones that will be the most valuable to you, and begin boosting your productivity now!

                                            More Productivity and Time Management Apps

                                            Featured photo credit: freestocks via unsplash.com

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