Advertising
Advertising

9.5 Ways to Ensure That You Fail Every Time

9.5 Ways to Ensure That You Fail Every Time

    There are all kinds of ways to succeed. If you’re interested in such things, you can read about there being no shortcuts, tips for both life and business success, or…well, how to realize success at pretty much anything.

    Advertising

    If, instead, you’re interested in failing (with flying colors) read on.

    Today I want to give you 9.5 ways to ensure that you fail in life. Every time. No matter what you’re doing.

    Advertising

    The 9.5 Things

    First of all, why 9.5 things? My answer…why not? 9.5 is far more intriguing than 9 and is distinctly more provocative than 10.

    (In all honesty, there’s only 9…but 9.5 got your attention, right?)

    Advertising

    So, here we go…9.5 things that will — without fail — guarantee that you fail:

    1. Don’t visualize your end goal before you start. One of the best things you can do to ensure that you fail is to choose not to envision where you’re headed to before you head there. Don’t look at a picture of the finished 2,500-piece puzzle before you start. Don’t look at the architect’s rendering of the house before you start building. Don’t envision your successful business before you open the doors. Just don’t visualize your goal. That’s for successful people. Leave the visualization to them.
    2. Don’t do your due diligence before you start. Doing reading and homework before a test? Who does that? Only the successful people, of course…and who wants to be one of them? If you want to fail correctly, don’t check the real estate out before you invest in it. Don’t do any research before you start to write the grant. Don’t come to the table prepared.
    3. Don’t count the cost before you start. If you want to fail, and fail well, never count the cost of the completed project…in money, time, or energy…before you begin. Those who fail well know that you don’t need to assess what a task is going to cost you before you start. You should always just jump in head first. You’ll find out that the pool is only 3-feet deep once you dive in. No need to worry about breaking your neck before you jump.
    4. Start at the last minute. Need I say anymore about this one? The top-tier failures know that one of the best ways to avoid success is to start the exam as close to the final bell as possible. It’s far easier to fail if you take a nap for the first hour and worry about the exam as time runs short.
    5. Never get organized. Organization…yet another habit that only the successful have. If you want to fail with the best of them, make your entire life like your office already is…papers all over the place, 500 to-do lists crammed into your brain, your pockets, and your dryer’s lint trap. Make sure that you have no idea what needs to be done and when. And by all means, make sure you don’t know who needs to do what.
    6. • Refuse to ask for help. A closely-held secret of A-list failures is that you can do everything yourself. Everything. It doesn’t matter if someone else has actually been educated on the topic, you know the information better. It doesn’t matter if you have 95 things to do and only 2 hands to do them with. Your 2 hands are far more effective than the 4 hands you’d have if you let your co-worker join in the fun. It’s far better to be a month late on that major project deadline than it is to allow your less-than-omniscient peers to contribute to the project and get it done on time.
    7. Always use the first idea that pops into your head. Never brainstorm. Just open up your brain and run with whatever falls out first. If it comes out first, it’s got to be the best, right?
    8. Never ask for feedback along the way. Constructive criticism is for those weak-minded people who think they can’t do it right the first time…by themselves. If you want to fail successfully, ignore any midterm assessments. It doesn’t matter if your customers don’t like it when the product is halfway finished…they’re guaranteed to like it when it’s completely finished. Because you’re the one who completed it. When you want someone’s opinion, you’ll give it to them.
    9. Don’t try it again if it flops on the first attempt. If you want to remove any chance of eventual success, just remember that true failure occurs after the first attempt flops. Never try anything again. If it’s worth doing, it will work out on the first try. Always. So, don’t bother with repeat attempts. That’s only for those who are determined to succeed.

    Failing is not hard work. It just takes developing some good old-fashioned bad habits.

    Advertising

    So, go ahead. Give it a shot. (But only one shot.)

    More by this author

    Brock Henry

    Brock writes about productivity tips at Lifehack.

    7 Signs That You’re Way Too Busy 9.5 Ways to Ensure That You Fail Every Time

    Trending in Productivity

    1 15 Best Productivity Hacks for Procrastinators 2 How to Stop Bad Habits: 9 Scientifically Proven Methods 3 How To Be A Successful Person (And What Makes One Unsuccessful) 4 How to Lead a Team More Effectively and Be a True Leader at Work 5 10 Powerful Ways to Influence People Positively

    Read Next

    Advertising
    Advertising
    Advertising

    Last Updated on April 6, 2020

    15 Best Productivity Hacks for Procrastinators

    15 Best Productivity Hacks for Procrastinators

    Let me guess.

    You should be doing something else rather than reading this article. But due to some unknown force of nature, you decided to procrastinate by reading an article about how to hack procrastination. You deserve a pat on the back.

    Fortunately, procrastination is not a disease. It’s just a mindset that can be changed, however, here are some productivity tips you need to start getting work done:

    First, you need to acknowledge that procrastinating is an unhealthy habit. Not only you’re prioritizing unimportant things, basically, nothing gets done. Still unsure if you’re a procrastinator? Check out this article: Types of Procrastination (And How To Fix Procrastination And Start Doing)

    Second, your commitment to change is very important. You should be physically, emotionally, and mentally determined to change this habit. If not, then you’ll just succumb to the tempting lure of doing other things rather than your tasks or chores.

    Here are sthe best productivity hacks to improve productivity and keep yourself from procrastinating at work:

    1. Give (10+2)*5 a Try

    Let’s start with a classic but very effective hack called (10+2)*5 created by Merlin Mann,[1] author of 43Folders.com. Don’t worry. This is not a complicated Mathematical formula you need to solve.

    Advertising

    The (10+2)*5 simply means 10 minutes work + 2 minutes break multiplied by 5, completing 1 hour. It is crucial to stick with the time limits and not skipping work and break schedules. The point of this is for you to create a jam-packed routine of work and break schedules. The result? You will eventually skip your break schedules.

    2. Use Red and Blue More Often

    Clean your desk and remove things that might distract you. According to a Science Daily study[2] about which colors improve brain performance, red was found out to increase attention to details while blue sparks creativity. Surrounding your workplace with these colors not only benefits your brain, it’s also pleasing to the eye.

    3. Create a Break Agenda

    List all the things you want to do on your break, be it surfing the web, checking your emails, snack time, taking selfies, Facebook/Twitter—everything.

    Like the (10+2)*5 hack, squeeze these in between work time but the difference is you schedule these activities for ONLY 20 minutes. Eventually, you’ll take your break minutes wisely. You’re finishing tasks while sidetracking to doing the things you enjoy.

    4. Set a Timetable for Your Tasks

    Like any other habits, procrastinating is a tough wall to break. Replace this habit with another habit. When you’re assigned a task, set a timetable for each step. Let’s say you have a big research task. Here’s a sample timetable:

    9:00 – 9:10 am – Set up all your tools, browser tabs, emails, coffee, etc..
    9:10 – 10:00 am – Internet research
    10:00 – 10:45 am – Look through existing files
    10:45 – 11:00 am – Break time!
    11:00 – 12:00 pm – Outline the research report

    Deadlines are the best hack for getting things done. Setting a specific time to finish a task creates time pressure even if the deadline has passed.

    Advertising

    5. Take It Outside!

    Do yourself a favor and don’t ruin the comfy vibe of your home. If you need to work on a stressful project, do it in a library or coffee shop. You’ll never finish it anyway. Your cozy sofa and toasty bed will just lure you into napping yourself to doom.

    6. Become Productively Lazy

    Instead of finding all sorts of ways to unproductively procrastinate, use your habit to look for shortcuts and new ways to finish your tasks. Staple multiple papers at a time or master the 3-second t-shirt folding technique. A strong drive combined with laziness sometimes bring out the productive and creative side you never knew you have!

    7. Assign a ‘Task Deputy’

    It could be your colleague, your supervisor, or your significant other, anyone who has the unforgiving guts to reprimand you when you procrastinate. You could go the extra mile by paying up unfinished tasks or times you open your Facebook or watch a funny cat video on YouTube. Let’s see how five bucks every time you procrastinate will change you.

    8. Consider a Gadget-Free Desk

    According to a study by Kleiner Perkins Caufield and Byers, average users check on their phones 150 times per day and having your phone just an elbow away just creates sizzle to this habit.[3]

    Removing mobile devices and gadgets allows you to focus on your work without the constant interruption from notifications, calls, and text messages. It eliminates the very distracting ambiance and the urge to unlock your phone just because.

    9. Prepping the Night

    Before hitting the sack to oblivion, prepare everything you’ll need the next day. This will probably take you 15 minutes tops, saving you more time for coffee in the morning.

    Spin class at am? Pack up your gym clothes, shoes, socks, etc. or better, create a checklist so you don’t miss anything. You can also prep your food into containers and just grab one before leaving.

    Advertising

    10. Do a 7-Minute Workout in the Morning

    Exercising is proven to increase productivity and stimulate release of endorphin or “Happy Hormones”.

    Take a jog outdoors and get warmed up for the day. Don’t feel like running outside? Hop on a treadmilli. It’s a great investment and there are a lot of ways you can use a treadmill like endurance running and metabolism training. On a budget? Here’s a 7 minute, no-equipment needed workout you can do at home:

    11. Set-up Mini Tasks

    If you’re given a big project, break it down into mini tasks. Create a checklist and start with the easy ones until you finish. Got an article to write? Just start with the title and the first sentence. Or perhaps you have a visual presentation to make?

    Spend 15 minutes on your outline, take five minutes coffee break, then finish the first two slides. Accomplishing something, no matter how tiny, still gives you that sense of fulfillment.

    12. Create an Inspirational Board or Reminder

    I found these mini desk chalkboards from Etsy you can use to write motivating quotes.

    Or you know what? Simply write “Do it now!” and stare at it for 10 seconds every time you feel like dropping by on Reddit.

    13. Redecorate Your Room

    Redecorating my room motivates me to maintain that ‘new’ look for some time until I get use to it and eventually stop. So I redecorate again and again, it became a monthly habit really. Here are some DIY ideas you can do to any room without spending much.

    Advertising

    14. Ready Your Nibbles

    You know that trip to the pantry? It’s just seconds away but it took you several minutes just to get your fruit snacks in the fridge. Before starting a task, prepare your nibbles on your desk to avoid zoning out and losing yourself on the way to the pantry.

    Bonus productivity hacks you can do at home:

    15. Schedule Your Chores

    Write down your chores in a weekly basis with matching day and time when you should be doing these.

    For the artsy folks, you can create fun chore charts like these or simply stick the list somewhere visibly annoying e.g. mirrors, doors, TV. The trick is listing as many chores as you can for the week and including unfinished chores the following week. Who likes seeing a long list of chores first thing in the morning?

    More Tips to Overcome Procrastination

    Featured photo credit: Glenn Carstens-Peters via unsplash.com

    Reference

    Read Next