suggestions for Overcoming
There are numerous ways to
help yourself get going. We've listed some tried and tested ones. Explore
and experiment, and find out what works for you. Be creative - procrastination
thrives on tedium, so find a way to make the process enjoyable.
And we'd welcome anything you have found helpful - e-mail:
with your suggestions and get a mention!
- Remember times of PAST SUCCESS, and look
at what helped you go through each of the ACTION
SPIRAL steps on those occasions. What skills or factors
or people enabled you to be effective? What could you transfer or
re-create to help you with the current task or challenge?
- Find a BUDDY and support each other as
you both take real-world action step by step (eg a study buddy). Choose
an effective person whom you trust.
- Remember COURAGE usually comes when you
do the thing you're scared of, rather than before. And that you build
courage by taking tiny brave steps, just as you build your ability
to be reliable. Don't frighten yourself by taking on too much too
- Use a ROLE-MODEL eg - what would Madonna
do in this situation? - or Nelson Mandela? Or your granny? Try doing
it their way!
- Make a PLAN and put it somewhere where
you will see it everyday, and colour in or tear off tasks as you make
- Make LISTS and tick off the items, no
matter how small.
- Make retrospective lists in the form of
a SUCCESS DIARY - ie writing down whatever you've done as you complete
it, to keep an indisputable log of achievement.
- Keep reminding yourself how well you're
doing, no matter how small the real-world step that you have taken.
Practising POSITIVE SELF-TALK over time can help to drown out the
voice of the internal saboteur and make it even more likely you will
- What REWARD would really motivate you?
make sure you give yourself this if you take that step forward!
- Ask your friends, family or mates to write
down ENCOURAGING MESSAGES and carry them with you, or stick them up
in a place where you will often see them. And do them the honour of
believing what they say.
- Use DEADLINES if they motivate and energise
you, but not if they de-activate, depress or frustrate you, or make
you want to kick the cat.
- Radical thought alert!!!
Consider respecting deadlines and goals you make for yourself as much
you respect those set by other people. Radical
- Never under-estimate the POWER OF ROUTINE.
Showing up at the same time and place every day or week and having
a sincere go will bear fruit - the muse will undoubtedly arrive, just
maybe not exactly when you had in mind.
- Equally, don't under-estimate the POWER
OF PLODDING. There are plenty of smiling tortoises out there for every
sheepish hare (so to speak).
- Imagine yourself ten years hence, looking
back. What great advice could your FUTURE SELF give you on the thing
you are struggling with now? How much time and energy would he or
she recommend you spend on it? How could he or she give their advice
in a way that you could make use of now?
- TAKE BREAKS as you make progress. Especially
on a long task, like paying back a huge debt, or developing a relationship
or career, you need to build in some breathing space in order to keep
going for the long haul. It's an Action Spiral like any other, after
all..…. just a very large one.
- Put on some LOUD MUSIC and DANCE while
you do the task.
- Or SING your way through it.
- And make sure you LAUGH every day. Procrastination
doesn't like laughter. But real world action does.