Friday, August 31, 2007

Procrastination, Part II

Yesterday I shared with you two points John Maxwell says will help to fight off procrastination. Here are his final two points:

3. Break down your big tasks. Connie Gersick of the Anderson Graduate School of Management at UCLA says that the average person doesn’t get seriously down to work on a big project until midway between the start of the project and the deadline, whether an hour or a year away.

If the size of a task causes you to procrastinate or completely shy away, break it into smaller, more manageable tasks. Then, give yourself an immediate deadline for accomplishing each task.

Ray Kroc, an American entrepreneur famous for significantly expanding the McDonald’s Corporation since 1955, said, “Nothing is particularly hard if you divide it into small jobs.”

4. Step back and see the big picture. Don Shula, former head coach of the Miami Dolphins, once said, “If you stacked [the mediocre] teams up against one of the perennial contenders, the talent gap might not be as great as you’d expect. It’s the philosophy gap that separates them. The losers lack something vital: a sense of purpose.”

Often people fail to start or complete a task because they don’t see any connection between what they’re doing and what they really want to accomplish. If you sense that what you’re doing is not blazing a trail toward a desired result, it’s probably time to rethink your pursuits. If you know that your work will move you closer to your goals, you will be more inclined to see the task through.

Even if you have procrastinated in the past, you can begin working today with a new outlook on getting things done and use some fresh methods for avoiding procrastination in the future. Make yourself a promise today to put an end to the phrases “woulda, coulda, shoulda” in your life.

Now that you know that, what is it that you have been putting off?

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