25 May, 2024

Procrastination – A Business Energy Sapping And Time Enemy And How To Avoid It

Are you aware that procrastinating in your business is probably your worst enemy?

Why is this? Because there is nothing more detrimental to your concentration and the true potential of your business …than going around and around in circles and making excuses about not doing something rather than getting down to achieving real important work.

So what does procrastination really mean?

Procrastination in business terms means to delay, postpone or put off doing something important like taking appropriate action such as making a phone call to deal with a customer complaint. This becomes a ‘power struggle’ in your mind which plays itself out to the detriment of your business.

Not only does it create over time, a huge backlog of urgent work that needs to be undertaken, but it also makes you feel guilty and overwhelmed about not having actually started your key work tasks and responsibilities.

So, how does procrastination come about?

One of the biggest reasons that you will make you procrastinate is when you don’t feel that you’ve freely chosen the work you urgently have to do, especially if somebody else has forced it on you and you haven’t really chosen to own the task or project.

Other reasons could be that you’re just making excuses, or you feel tired and want a break.

And the worst effect of these happening is that you end up in denial that you haven’t got the time.

What happens if this happens?

In such cases, you usually wind up putting off the responsibility for undertaking the work that now needs doing. You feel you don’t want to start it …

When what you really need to do is either delegate the task or allocate a start and finishing time and then get it done right through to completion. Because if you’re not careful, before you know it, you’ve created a full-blown crisis that involved other people and probably irate customers.

The best way to avoid this procrastination problem is to take responsibility and devote a dedicated amount of your time to begin the task. This will immediately trigger your attention towards the task on hand. Then break the task down into manageable pieces and soon you will be entirely involved in doing exactly what has to be accomplished.

So, remember this… To avoid procrastination becoming a big problem and time waster, constantly ask yourself this vital question:

“Am I really taking responsibility to plan out and get a clear overview of target goals in the business and to track and allocate specific time on my various tasks and responsibilities that I need to accomplish with the aim to move the business forward within certain timescale?”

In addition, undervaluing the time a task will take to finish also leads to frustration and then procrastination.

The reason why this is one of the most common time mistakes people tend to make is to miscalculate both the time and energy that will be needed to complete a particular task. This behaviour is typical of business people who think they can keep everything under control and are never able to turn down what they see as an opportunity no matter how demanding it is of their time. And then they get fed up and put off doing it.

What you need to do when you’re suffering from this time problem to become more effective with your time and complete two very essential activities:

  1. Create a “to-do list” of tasks and then write down the amount of time you need to spend on each one of these tasks on your list then do the most urgent first and so on.
  2. Break large projects down into specific, actionable steps with time frames so you won’t overlook something important. This will help you determine if a task is your responsibility and is of high-priority, or low-value, for the actual work you do.

Doing these two activities each day will help you to cut down on procrastination, so to avoid this energy sapping and time problem, constantly ask yourself this question:

“Am I focusing on my job role responsibilities and what are the top 5-7 projects which I need to be spending my valuable time and energy on …and how am I achieving these by prioritising tasks?”

Business Talk

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