8 Things To Remember When Trying To Lead A Procrastination-Free Life

by Adrienne Giguere

Procrastination is most often seen through the act of scrolling through Facebook or Instagram.

Okay, by definition, procrastination can be scrolling Facebook and Instagram. Literally.

But we’ve all been there, whether it’s with something silly like mowing the lawn or serious things like college applications or 10-page papers.

When we let procrastination keep us from doing important tasks, it can lead to a lot of stress, sleepless nights and negative energy, not to mention poor performance.

Here are eight key points to keep in mind when you’re trying to prevent procrastination once and for all:

1. Get some sleep.

That whole “early to bed, early to rise” thing is actually true.

If you get to sleep just a little bit earlier, you’ll feel way better when that alarm clock screams in the morning.

You’ll feel way more motivated, too.

2. Make a list.

It’s hard to begin when you’re overwhelmed with the amount of things you need to get done. Start by making a list, and don’t be afraid to categorize and prioritize it.

I like to make a list: one side for “work” and one side for “home.” During the work week, my “work” list takes priority.

Sometimes, I even number or highlight the most important things to get done on a daily basis.

Seeing what I have to do in small increments like this helps me take it one step and one day at a time, without getting overly stressed.

3. Go big or go home.

Attack the biggest, most difficult task on your to-do list first. It’s so tempting to leave that least favorite job for the end, but that’s a very common way to get the job pushed off until tomorrow.

Just get it over with.

4. Try weekly workouts.

Every time I get back to working out after slacking off for a week or two, I instantly remember how much more energy I have after working out.

It’s seriously incredible. We all cheat now and again, but the next time you have some work to get done after hours, squeeze in a jog or at least a brisk walk.

You’ll feel ten times more motivated than if you hadn’t.

5. Unplug.

Now, this sh*t isn’t easy. However, I’m a teacher at an alternative school, and all of my students are required to hand in their cell phones at the start of the school day.

Out of respect for them, I do the same with my cell phone. I keep it away.

No notifications to check and no distracting social media apps (or that damn game you can’t get enough of), and all of a sudden, you’re quite productive.

Anyway, just relax. Those little badge numbers don’t expire.

Don’t you feel way more popular when that number is like seven or eight?

6. Say “no.”

This can be hard for many people, especially the kind or the people-pleasing type. You do not have to accommodate every single person’s request for a favor, particularly if you have a busy week.

Make it a rule of thumb to never give up your “me” time -- this includes workouts, mental health moments or coffee with your mom -- in order to help someone out.

We all need to take care of ourselves in order to be able to help one another.

7. Don’t let “happy hour” turn into “happy four hours.”

The work week is called the work week for a reason. It’s time to do work.

A glass of wine while you watch your weekly TV drama is one thing. Staying out until midnight getting tipsy is another.

Like my mother says, “If you play, you pay.”

Your hungover ass will not be getting nearly as much done the next day.

You just handed over your to-do list to procrastination, with a tip.

8. Stop updating.

Our generation takes a whole lot of time out of their day taking pictures of meals, posting locations, Snapchatting stories and tweeting their buns off.

Zip it for an hour or two, and you won’t believe how much you’ll get done.

If you remember nothing else, remember this: Now is the time, while we’re young.

My personal philosophy is, we all have to work now so we can run sh*t later.

I’ve got a dream house I want to build, kids I want to have (and be able to afford), and tropical vacations I want to take. The hustle time is now.

Get after it, people.