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You Thought You Didn’t Need A Professional Fixer, Just Wait Till You Read This

You Thought You Didn’t Need A Professional Fixer, Just Wait Till You Read This

Do you have a problem and don’t want anyone to know? Call a professional fixer.  For the average person, legal help would be the first resort. However, there are many ways to skin a fish. Fixers literally fix any kind of problem, a la Olivia Pope, of ABC’s hit show, Scandal.  They come in during moments of crisis and publicity faux pas.  It’s easy to think professional fixers are out of your reach, and that you have to fix your own mess. And you may be right—many people can’t afford the thousands it takes to hire one. That’s why you must seek out a “fixer” among your own.  Still not convinced you need one?

Here’s a breakdown of why you do.

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1. You lack street knowledge.

To some, the street literally means the sidewalk.  Across urban neighborhoods, there are savvy, street smart men and women who have made something of themselves without school.  They are starting companies, running them, or contributing to the arts or commerce in some kind of beneficial way. Study them. You never know where these relationships lead; you must keep your options open and your network wide.  Without certain street knowledge and ways to negotiate, you fall victim to games, cons, tricksters, and all kinds of confusion in everyday life.

2. Your professional network is made up of mostly co-workers or high school buddies.

After the age of 25, you need more.  Branch out into different social circles that reflect your grown-up interests in business, philanthropy or the arts.  You will meet people there who can introduce you to people you need to meet. An affluent professional network takes years to cultivate.  With proper care, you will find that this alone can change your entire life.

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3. You don’t know anyone who can vouch for your character if you are in trouble.

Everyone needs someone they can call on to write a decent letter of recommendation or sit in the witness stand. No one will second-guess them because they are not related to you, like your mother or Uncle Bobby.  Establish a network with successful types who have your back. A professional fixer can find this person on your behalf.

4. You don’t know anyone who can greenlight a project or decision.

Do you need to get your documents approved to move on with your life? Someone who can greenlight a project can make a difference between eating or not, waiting or not, is a lifesaver and game changer.  This is particularly important for those in government and entertainment sectors where red tape or a guy in a big office can stand between you and a dream.  Fixers can open doors.

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5. You don’t know anyone who can give you money, lots of it.

A fixer with money can hire a PR pro or even a brand management firm to help you, and they can also pay lawyers to work on your behalf, too.  This is essential when you are broke and have no other recourse.  The fixer will see it as an investment in you.  This means that you must be someone of promise or accomplishment.  If a professional fixer doesn’t have money, then they should have access.

6. You have too many friends, and not enough associates.

A professional fixer can be a long-term associate (not necessarily friend) who has the following things: money, access, connections to shadow places like the street, clandestine partners and resources, and some charm. Friends have too many questions.  Associates are best to turn to in a pickle.  You won’t disappoint them since they have no expectations.  They have little to lose because they haven’t invested their time in you, and yet, may be intrigued.  If you’re being blackmailed by someone you know, but need in your life, a friend may just ask you to call the cops.  Olivia Pope, would never do that.

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7. You went to the wrong school.

Most young fixers in-the-making are already in high places.  They are at the Ivy League college or exclusive prep school establishing relationships.  If you went to the local college, it’s not too late to get it right.  If you’re already fairly accomplished, schools like Harvard and Oxford have specialized, short term programs for professionals looking to enhance their skills.  Get in one of these, and grab as many business cards as possible.  You may need it one day. Fixers have to start somewhere.

A relationship with a professional fixer is transactional.  You only call them when you need them.  If you go with someone who is not quite “professional” make sure you have something to offer them in return—notoriety, secrecy, or an introduction.  Like the saying goes: nothing in life is ever free.

Featured photo credit: href= via flickr.com

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Last Updated on September 16, 2019

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

How to Stop Procrastinating: 11 Practical Ways for Procrastinators

You have a deadline looming. However, instead of doing your work, you are fiddling with miscellaneous things like checking email, social media, watching videos, surfing blogs and forums. You know you should be working, but you just don’t feel like doing anything.

We are all familiar with the procrastination phenomenon. When we procrastinate, we squander away our free time and put off important tasks we should be doing them till it’s too late. And when it is indeed too late, we panic and wish we got started earlier.

The chronic procrastinators I know have spent years of their life looped in this cycle. Delaying, putting off things, slacking, hiding from work, facing work only when it’s unavoidable, then repeating this loop all over again. It’s a bad habit that eats us away and prevents us from achieving greater results in life.

Don’t let procrastination take over your life. Here, I will share my personal steps on how to stop procrastinating. These 11 steps will definitely apply to you too:

1. Break Your Work into Little Steps

Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”.

For example, I’m currently writing a new book (on How to achieve anything in life). Book writing at its full scale is an enormous project and can be overwhelming. However, when I break it down into phases such as –

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  • (1) Research
  • (2) Deciding the topic
  • (3) Creating the outline
  • (4) Drafting the content
  • (5) Writing Chapters #1 to #10,
  • (6) Revision
  • (7) etc.

Suddenly it seems very manageable. What I do then is to focus on the immediate phase and get it done to my best ability, without thinking about the other phases. When it’s done, I move on to the next.

2. Change Your Environment

Different environments have different impact on our productivity. Look at your work desk and your room. Do they make you want to work or do they make you want to snuggle and sleep? If it’s the latter, you should look into changing your workspace.

One thing to note is that an environment that makes us feel inspired before may lose its effect after a period of time. If that’s the case, then it’s time to change things around. Refer to Steps #2 and #3 of 13 Strategies To Jumpstart Your Productivity, which talks about revamping your environment and workspace.

3. Create a Detailed Timeline with Specific Deadlines

Having just 1 deadline for your work is like an invitation to procrastinate. That’s because we get the impression that we have time and keep pushing everything back, until it’s too late.

Break down your project (see tip #1), then create an overall timeline with specific deadlines for each small task. This way, you know you have to finish each task by a certain date. Your timelines must be robust, too – i.e. if you don’t finish this by today, it’s going to jeopardize everything else you have planned after that. This way it creates the urgency to act.

My goals are broken down into monthly, weekly, right down to the daily task lists, and the list is a call to action that I must accomplish this by the specified date, else my goals will be put off.

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Here’re more tips on setting deadlines: 22 Tips for Effective Deadlines

4. Eliminate Your Procrastination Pit-Stops

If you are procrastinating a little too much, maybe that’s because you make it easy to procrastinate.

Identify your browser bookmarks that take up a lot of your time and shift them into a separate folder that is less accessible. Disable the automatic notification option in your email client. Get rid of the distractions around you.

I know some people will out of the way and delete or deactivate their facebook accounts. I think it’s a little drastic and extreme as addressing procrastination is more about being conscious of our actions than counteracting via self-binding methods, but if you feel that’s what’s needed, go for it.

5. Hang out with People Who Inspire You to Take Action

I’m pretty sure if you spend just 10 minutes talking to Steve Jobs or Bill Gates, you’ll be more inspired to act than if you spent the 10 minutes doing nothing. The people we are with influence our behaviors. Of course spending time with Steve Jobs or Bill Gates every day is probably not a feasible method, but the principle applies — The Hidden Power of Every Single Person Around You

Identify the people, friends or colleagues who trigger you – most likely the go-getters and hard workers – and hang out with them more often. Soon you will inculcate their drive and spirit too.

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As a personal development blogger, I “hang out” with inspiring personal development experts by reading their blogs and corresponding with them regularly via email and social media. It’s communication via new media and it works all the same.

6. Get a Buddy

Having a companion makes the whole process much more fun. Ideally, your buddy should be someone who has his/her own set of goals. Both of you will hold each other accountable to your goals and plans. While it’s not necessary for both of you to have the same goals, it’ll be even better if that’s the case, so you can learn from each other.

I have a good friend whom I talk to regularly, and we always ask each other about our goals and progress in achieving those goals. Needless to say, it spurs us to keep taking action.

7. Tell Others About Your Goals

This serves the same function as #6, on a larger scale. Tell all your friends, colleagues, acquaintances and family about your projects. Now whenever you see them, they are bound to ask you about your status on those projects.

For example, sometimes I announce my projects on The Personal Excellence Blog, Twitter and Facebook, and my readers will ask me about them on an ongoing basis. It’s a great way to keep myself accountable to my plans.

8. Seek out Someone Who Has Already Achieved the Outcome

What is it you want to accomplish here, and who are the people who have accomplished this already? Go seek them out and connect with them. Seeing living proof that your goals are very well achievable if you take action is one of the best triggers for action.

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9. Re-Clarify Your Goals

If you have been procrastinating for an extended period of time, it might reflect a misalignment between what you want and what you are currently doing. Often times, we outgrow our goals as we discover more about ourselves, but we don’t change our goals to reflect that.

Get away from your work (a short vacation will be good, else just a weekend break or staycation will do too) and take some time to regroup yourself. What exactly do you want to achieve? What should you do to get there? What are the steps to take? Does your current work align with that? If not, what can you do about it?

10. Stop Over-Complicating Things

Are you waiting for a perfect time to do this? That maybe now is not the best time because of X, Y, Z reasons? Ditch that thought because there’s never a perfect time. If you keep waiting for one, you are never going to accomplish anything.

Perfectionism is one of the biggest reasons for procrastination. Read more about why perfectionist tendencies can be a bane than a boon: Why Being A Perfectionist May Not Be So Perfect.

11. Get a Grip and Just Do It

At the end, it boils down to taking action. You can do all the strategizing, planning and hypothesizing, but if you don’t take action, nothing’s going to happen. Occasionally, I get readers and clients who keep complaining about their situations but they still refuse to take action at the end of the day.

Reality check:

I have never heard anyone procrastinate their way to success before and I doubt it’s going to change in the near future.  Whatever it is you are procrastinating on, if you want to get it done, you need to get a grip on yourself and do it.

More About Procrastination

Featured photo credit: Malvestida Magazine via unsplash.com

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