Stop Procrastinating Right Now and in the Future
We are all guilty of procrastination, and imagine how much more we could achieve if we stop. It is easier said than done. With numerous distractions around us, procrastination seems inevitable. The only way to overcome it is to practice time management.
But, before we see what you can do to stop procrastinating as soon as possible, let’s explain what procrastination is.
What is Procrastination?
In simple words, procrastination can be defined as the postponing of important tasks. Instead of doing what they should do, people who procrastinate spend their time doing trivial activities. For example, instead of finishing the report for your work, you lose track of time scrolling down the Instagram feed.
Here is what you can do to overcome procrastination.
Find Out Which Tasks You Avoid Most Often
Procrastination is, to some point, avoiding discomfort. During a standard workday, you might not even be aware of your procrastination patterns. Therefore, try to identify which tasks you avoid the most. Are those online meetings, writing reports, doing calculations, or something else?
Once you discover the procrastination pattern, try to find a reason why you find those tasks uncomfortable. Some people are afraid that they will let other people down, so they procrastinate to avoid getting feedback. Others procrastinate because they find their tasks too boring. Some may feel like the tasks shouldn’t be part of their work.
Once you are aware of the patterns, you may come up with a solution. You may try to delegate, organize priorities differently or ask for help.
In some cases, these solutions might help you prevent procrastination in the first place.
Confront Your Procrastination
Do what makes you scary. It doesn’t get easier or simpler than that. For example, if you procrastinate because you don’t feel comfortable gathering up colleagues for a meeting, do that and do it despite your level of discomfort. You might discover that you can put up with more discomfort than you anticipated in the first place.
If it seems like too big of a step for you, take small steps. For example, call two colleagues at a time for a meeting. It will help you feel more productive, knowing that you have accomplished a small milestone.
Congratulations, you’ve done the first step toward overcoming procrastination. But, if you have been used to procrastination, you’ll easily slip out of your mood. You can start procrastinating again even in the middle of the tasks.
Therefore, come up with a set of solutions that will help build confidence and concentration. You can even divide tasks into small milestones and celebrate as you complete each one of them. Promise yourself a reward as an additional motivation to stay focused on important things.
Keep Distractions at Minimal
Put your phone away. Don’t drink or snack while you do your task. If you have anxiety over deadlines, remove the watches and focus only on things you have to complete.
Don’t sit anywhere near the TV while you work and close the office door to prevent yourself from staring at other people passing through the hall.
Even if you slip into procrastination, don’t beat yourself for it. Also, forgive yourself for procrastination in the past. Self-love and care are the best motivation for success and the best tool.
During the process, tackle challenges as soon as they occur, and stay focused as long as possible. Over time, overcoming procrastination will come naturally to you, as you’ll discover how good you feel when you stop procrastinating. So, what are you waiting for? Go and complete at least one task you’ve been avoiding! Share the article with your friends to help them overcome procrastination.
The 80/20 Principle
Naturally, most of us experience life as if the results we accomplish are coequal to the work we put in. Focusing on volume, sometimes we tend to overcomplicate things. However, there’s an Italian Economist named Vilfredo Pareto that was dabbling in his tomato garden when he discovered that maybe that’s not how things really are.
He discovered that roughly 20% of his plants were yielding 80% percent of the fruit, and so he took it further… This is exactly what we nowadays refer to as the “80/20 principle,” so let’s go in depth on this topic to see the exact implications!
What Is The 80/20 Principle?
The Pareto Principle or the 80/20 rule is a description of input versus output and mainly how roughly 80% of consequences stem from 20% of causes. It’s not always the exact number for number percentage but the proportion generally stays true to around those ballpark figures.
The most interesting thing about this law is that it applies to pretty much everything.
Some key examples might be:
– 20% of a company’s customers are responsible for 80% of the sales
– 20% of (inexperienced) drivers cause 80% of all traffic accidents
– 80% of all end users generally use only 20% of a given software’s features
How Does It Affect Our Lives?
So, how does this statistical proportion affect our lives? Well, the fact that this law exists everywhere means that we as individuals are not excluded from it. This law dictates some random statistical facts, but also the outcome of our efforts and the outcome of our lives. The 80/20 rule also goes by another name – ‘’The Law of The Vital Few’.’
The tricky part is identifying the vital few. However, it might be easier than you think. All we need to do is ask the right questions. The right questions depend on where you’re trying to apply the law. You need to ask yourself ‘’What am I trying to improve?’’, and from there, the main concept is this:
Which 20% of my efforts lead to 80% of my outcomes?
Once you honestly answer those questions, you will be a step closer to identifying the real drivers of progress. The same question can be turned around, and you can ask Where do 80% of my problems come from?
Once you learn to identify the things that can be ignored and to concentrate effort on moving the crucial components that drive you forward, something amazing will happen.
You’ll begin to notice how even small amounts of effort concentrated on the important and cardinal can move you closer to your goals more than whole campaigns of uncoordinated actions that focus on volume rather than quality. Doing a lot, in itself, is a form of procrastination.
Most likely the majority of your problems branch from a small portion of your behavior and habits. And again, most likely, the bulk of your prosperity comes from a sparse number of things you do in your day to day life. Ever been short on money and felt like your whole life has been derailed, or at least the majority of it? There’s your vital few.
Ever had a tough breakup and felt immobilized and discouraged to participate in the other 80% of activities life brings to you? There’s your vital few. Ever suffered an accident or a health issue that left a powerful stagnation over your life? There’s your vital few. We tend to think big changes stem from big ideas… However that’s usually false.
It’s a small concentrated node that usually drives (or derails) your progress. Say, for example, you’re looking to learn a new language. A common approach might be picking up a textbook on the given language and starting from your A B C’s.
You learn the alphabet. You learn to say Hi, you learn how to ask for milk in the supermarket, and so on. But, does this approach really bring you any closer to being fluent in the language apart from being able to utilize it in a few scripted situations?
The answer, most probably, is no. The vital few approach will look something like this: You go online and look for the top methods used by successful polyglots that allowed them to learn a lot in a short amount of time. You identify the 1000 most used words in the given language, and you start learning them.
Once there, you start researching which language learning method actually has delivered the best results and is favored by.
Focusing on high volume isn’t always the capital choice.
After all, it’s natural to think that the more work you put in, the more results come in.
Sometimes, we even deceive ourselves while adding task after task on our agenda, thinking we’re being productive and effective only to look back and see that there were a few critically important actions that propelled the results we’re looking for.
How To Prioritize Using The Law Of The Vital Few
The height of cultivation always runs to simplicity.
– Bruce Lee
Slow down and keep in mind that most things don’t make an impact. Constantly put the things you do under the magnifying glass and look for the small things that make a huge difference. There is no lack of time. There is a lack of prioritization.
The only way you can get better at using this law is by testing. Do different iterations, remove stuff from your routine, see what makes a quantifiable difference.
Remember, while you do this kind of analysis cutting things might be difficult. You’ll know you’re doing it right if the answers to the questions you ask yourself make you uncomfortable.
Sometimes, we lie to ourselves.
You might have friends that cause the majority of your problems or insecurities. It might even be family members.
There might be a few particular customers that are causing you the most problems at work or in your business while bringing you the least profit. Look for uneven distributions like that, honestly look for them. Chances are it won’t take too much time before you see that the world is grossly uneven.
And then… you can start using that to your advantage.
The Areas Of Personal Development
“What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us”, says Ralph Waldo Emerson. Almost every successful personality has given utmost importance to personal development and growth.
They have depicted personal development as a pathway leading to skills, attributes, and qualities needed to live an efficacious and prosperous life. Personal development is defined as a lifelong process. The Business Dictionary defines it as, “The process of improving oneself through such activities as enhancing employment skills, increasing consciousness and building wealth.”
Personal development involves self-care which includes all those activities that help us to evolve in our self-best. As George Bernard Shaw once said, “Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself.” Personal development is not something that can be achieved overnight; rather , it’s an evolving process that includes several steps.
Starting from establishing our personal vision of life to understanding where we are now. Once we are able to comprehend our current standing then we can move ahead, and identify the areas where we need to work.
The Areas of Personal Development
There are several areas where we can start grooming ourselves for personal development. These areas are: physical, social, mental, emotional and spiritual.
Let’s go over them one by one.
A healthy body and a healthy mind, two essentials to ensure before taking on an expedition/journey, whether it’s an actual, physically-demanding journey, or your life journey!
Our physical well-being is an important ingredient in leading a blissful life. It’s not only about doing exercise, rather it’s about having a balanced diet that includes proper nutrition, getting proper 7-8 hours of sleep, and maintaining body weight and BMI levels.
When we are physically fit, we tend to have more energy and we can utilize this zealous energy in achieving our life goals, seamlessly.
Smiles are contagious, so are positive vibes. Living in a society that demands social interaction and effectively communicating with people can help boost our self-confidence and self-esteem. Talking to different people not only helps in enhancing our confidence but also awareness of worldly scenarios.
People we connect with play a vital role in our lives as they implicitly impact our thought processes and moods. Therefore, interacting with the right people, learning new languages, and active listening can be helpful in our own development and growth.
When we learn something new, our brain tends to generate new neural pathways to hold onto the information. Mental development is most important in personal development because it helps to create a cushion for new skill sets and qualities to develop.
Mental development activities include reading a book, taking online courses or training, or watching informational and motivational YouTube videos. Not only these but also relaxation, keeping our mind tension-free can help in boosting our mental activity.
Many people nowadays are more focused on Emotional Quotient (EQ) rather than Intelligence Quotient (IQ). This is perhaps, because people with high IQ might not be able to survive under high-pressure situations whereas people with high EQ are seen to be more stable, focused, and better achievers.
In today’s fast-paced environment, it’s necessary to be emotionally stable and not be hyped by unanticipated circumstances. Emotional development can be done via having a counselor/therapist, journaling things down, or even, talking to a friend!
People often confuse spirituality with being religious, whereas one’s religion has nothing to do with being spiritual. Spiritual development involves being fully connected to all five senses of our body. It is about synchronizing our doings with our thought processes. It is about creating coherence between our body and soul.
Spiritual development can be achieved through yoga, meditation, or praying if you are religious. A deep connection to your soul is a deep connection to your awareness, which enables you to recognize and take on the correct actions towards achieving your ultimate personal development.
You are not just a body, nor a brain… And quite frankly, you are not just a soul. In fact, you are an intricate mix of all those things, and this is perhaps why you, as a human, are able to do and feel so many things.
Personal development is a life-long journey that simply represents the goal of improving your mental, physical, spiritual, emotional and social development, thus enabling you to achieve the best version of yourself.
And so, are you ready for your new, best self?
The Best Habits To Implement In Your Life
As humans, we are creatures who think, do and say out of deeply embedded habits. Each habit can either be productive or destructive for our long-term personal development, health and wellbeing.
In reality, if you think about it, your current life situation and state of being, are a direct reflection of the habits and thought patterns that you sustained and acted upon. Without a doubt, habits play a big role in our lives, as they are a vital part of our behavioral patterns, which in turn lead our lives in certain directions.
A Bad Habit
Breaking up with your bad habits and implementing new, more productive ones is without a doubt one of the toughest things to do. This is something that requires strong willpower and the desire to actually break the habit of being yourself. As we already mentioned, these habits, even the more toxic ones, feel natural, because they are what the brain knows.
The quest is to break those patterns and establish new, more productive habits. At first, this may feel unnatural but rest assured, the more you do the unknown, the more it becomes the new known. Here are some ideas for new habits you can establish to improve your overall quality of life
Besides making you look good naked, exercise can help you perform better in every aspect of your life.
Every time you do weighted or aerobic exercise, a flurry of nourishing substances is unleashed, which in turn improves the function of both your muscles and the brain.
These substances include dopamine, serotonin, endorphins and oxytocin, all of which create euphoric states that make you feel more content with everything.
#2 Eat Whole
Your wellbeing is a result of the way you treat your brain and your body. The things you put in your body (food, liquids) play a big role in all functions of your organism. It is important to remember that there are essential nutrients for the body, that we need but can’t produce on our own, internally.
The most essential nutrients are protein and fats, which are best derived from quality, well-grown animal meat and organs. While animal products should be at the core of your nutrition, you can include servings of vegetables and a carbohydrate source (potatoes, rice, other grains, etc.) to every meal.
Besides that, a couple portions of fruits a day, will also provide viable micronutrients, which will improve the functioning of your body.
Focus on whole foods!
#3 Be grateful
Though very important, exercise and nutrition are not all there is to health. The mental state you’re in will, to a big extent, determine your perception of each experience. A healthier perception of life means better overall wellbeing which therefore implies that mental practices can be introduced to your lifestyle, especially if you have a tendency to be more negative.
We spend a lot of our time digging through problems and while for the most part they look negative, problems help us thrive and improve. Try and shift your focus and perspective to one that makes you grateful for everything, even your problems.
Gratefulness allows you to feel content with what you have, instead of feeling the lack of what you don’t have. This natural mental state of abundance will, in turn, put you in a position where you can utilize it to take action on what needs to be done, in order for you to have what you want/need.
#4 Be in solitude
People are social creatures and as such, many of us tend to always be surrounded by people. However, just like some philosophical teachings suggest, the biggest breakthroughs come in solitude.
This is why it is important for you to have meetings with yourself, to analyze experiences, create a mental map of the future and last but not least, unwind from the overwhelmingly social world we live in. Remember, life is not all about goals and achievements. Sometimes you have to take a seat back, relax and look at things from a third perspective.
As cheesy as it is, reading is one of the best habits you can implement in your lifestyle. Think about it, people write books when they are at the peak of their creativity, when they want to share something with someone.
Books are the best way to gain knowledge from people that have been through things, and also the best way to train the creative/imagining part of your brain (i.e fiction books).
At your very core, you are a very complex, biological deep-learning machine, which you write the code for through your thoughts, emotions and behaviors.
For the most part, your daily life is 95% automatic, which is the exact reason why you should consciously engage in creating new and better habits.
Recognize and target your bad habits and try to replace them with things that support the work of your body and brain!
Workaholism – Does personal development justifies workaholism?
Working on our personal development is a great initiative – but have you heard someone telling you that you might be suffering from personal development burnout? Or becoming a workaholic in a not-so-positive way?
Workaholism, by definition, is a compulsive need to work. For some, work is nourished in the womb of life. Upon birth, work brings something important to their life. Like birth, there is necessarily labor, oftentimes painful. Whereas, others are still searching for what work means for them.
If you are searching for what “work” means for you, you must read David Whyte’s thought-provoking definition: “Work, after all, is intimacy, where the self meets the world.”
Positive workaholism vs. Negative workaholism
The positive workaholism and negative workaholism are often confused. However, if you think you are a workaholic because you love to work on personal development – and if your statement is true then you are more likely a positive workaholic.
Positive workaholism refers to a positive, fulfilling work-related state of mind that is characterized by rigor, dedication, and passion. If you are really into your work then you are a positive workaholic. In other words, not just your skin is in the game; it’s your soul that is in the game.
Whereas, negative workaholism has always been about burning out; you put your foot on the gas pedal and do not let up until your engine catches fire. Self-love, contrary to popular belief, is overrated. Things you do during self-love, such as eating comfort food and watching F.R.I.E.N.D.S., are unhelpful; pushing yourself during difficult times may be hard for you, but in the process, a new you will arise and evolve.
Being a positive workaholic entails acknowledging that you cannot rely on your past achievements and must therefore think about the future to see what you can accomplish.
You must keep going
Passion is both the love and the pain of our existence. You can’t just pick one without the other. Some people, such as burned-out activists and overcommitted helpers, drown in their sorrowful struggles, forgetting how much they love what they do. Others, such as daydreaming artists and wannabe entrepreneurs, seek out superficial rewards such as fame, fans, and fortune without going through the pain, and thus miss out on the super-rich fulfillment of soulful work.
The large majority of individuals are feeling the walls that stop them from understanding what life is all about, or they are drinking their worries away. But that is not how life works, so you must jump in and flap your hands around until you learn how to swim. You must keep the faith. Workaholics, hustlers, and GaryVee types represent that group of people who aren’t concerned with what the other person is doing but are concerned with what they are doing.
Even if personal development provides valuable ways to help you get through challenging times, if you consider yourself becoming anxious, frustrated, and trapped in a cycle of guilt, it’s time to recover, reevaluate, and transform what you’ve been doing so that it works for you. After all, this is your personal development, not anybody else’s. It must work for you.
This brings us to the last note, a practical reminder for you: “To begin with, we take only those steps which we can do in a heartfelt fashion, and then slowly increase our stride as we become familiar with the direct connection between our passion and courage.” — David Whyte
3 POWERFUL LIFESTYLE STEPS TO CREATE A MORE FULFILLING LIFE IN 2022
At first, improving your lifestyle can seem to be an unattainable goal. By this, I mean the quality of your life experience from the type of food you eat, the kind of folks you hang with, the sort of people you date, finances and vacations, and so on.
Full disclosure, it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to change anything in your life at once. However, it’s entirely possible and there are several little improvements you can make to enhance your physical, social, and mental well-being which will help you appreciate your life more.
That said; begin making one or two minor improvements at a time. You’ll be living the life you’ve always wanted in a given duration of time. This shall be dependent on your effort, your educational resources, and commitment.
Here are 3 powerful lifestyle tips to help you create a more fulfilling life.
1. Work on Your Physical Well Being
First, it all boils down to your diet. It’s not so difficult to eat a balanced diet. Include a range of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, and lean proteins such as legumes, fish, and chicken, and don’t forget the healthy fats in your diet.
Next, incorporate at least 150 minutes of mild to vigorous aerobic exercises such as taking a walk or intensive aerobic exercise like dancing into your routine. You can also do high-intensity resistance training regularly to tone the prominence of your muscles. Yes, I mean the six-pack or a perfect bottom.
Finally, come up with a healthy nighttime routine. Sleep deprivation will only increase exhaustion making you unproductive hence limiting you from experiencing positive feelings and achieving your goals.
2. Improve your Mental Wellness
Pay attention to the things that cause you tension and stress. You could be able to avoid these cues by avoiding people that cause it or not overcommitting yourself in certain situations.
Next, ditch the past. Seriously. It happened, so get comfortable with the decisions you made, and start living mindfully as you focus on the future. Practices such as meditation and counseling would be a great place to start.
Last but not least, set realistic and achievable goals for yourself. You’ll always be inspired and focused on the bigger picture.
3. Social and Professional Improvement
Ultimately, start the routine of saving cash. Regularly track your expenses and as you save more, ensure you invest this cash to yield more returns. Furthermore, it’s vital to keep improving your relationships. If you’ve got a romantic partner, put effort into keeping the relationship healthy, as it can be beneficial to your physical and emotional well-being.
Needless to say, read more up-to-date content, pursue interesting hobbies and hang out with interesting folks who are healthy.
These steps build onto one another. That said, you can work your way through step one to step 3 instead of getting overwhelmed while juggling between them all. You will gain momentum along the way, and when tough times come, brace yourself as that’s where you grow wiser and stronger. At the end of the first two weeks, I guarantee you will see a positive change in your life.