If there is one thing I am extremely good at, it is procrastination. Especially being a stay at home mom to a whirlwind-toddler, I am always tired and I never finish anything. I can spend years and years talking about how “I still want to do this and that” and not do one single thing to actually achieve it, all while complaining how insanely busy I am. It’s a gift, really. But it’s also a recipe for disaster and I do not recommend it.
I would love to say that I figured out the secret on how to turn procrastinating into action, but I haven’t. I guess it’s an ongoing learning experience and just like all the sucky-but-necessary things in life like continuous healthy eating, exercising every day and putting your clothes away instead of piling it on “The Chair” (We all have a Chair, don’t deny it) , you are going to have to try and try again until you figure out what works for you.
I by no means claim to have it all figured out but I do have a little trick that works for me, try it it might just work for you to:
Figure out what is important! (Such a cool article from Greg Mckeown)
I know, shocker. But seriously. You have a million things to do each day, but you might be surprised to find out that not every single one of those things are important. If you are feeling overwhelmed and frazzled and your catchphrase at the moment is: “Oh my gosh , I just don’t have the time!” you need to prioritize your time! If instead of finishing one thing you half-ass 5 things, you need to prioritize your time! If you are busy the whole day but get into bed at night and feel like you haven’t achieved anything, you guessed it PRIORITIZE YOUR TIME!
Here is the printable I use every week. The idea isn’t to fill it to the brim with to-do’s, exactly the opposite. I only fill in one or two things under each category. I usually start with the “Goal” section. Think of one thing that you can do today that will make you feel like you had a productive day and that you are living the dream. It could be “taking over the world” or “brushing my teeth”, whatever your need is at the moment, I’m not here to judge. But the main rule is, it has to be YOUR goal. Don’t write “do the laundry” because you feel like you should probably do the laundry sometime this month....week, whatever. That’s what the Important section is for. Write something for you. “Paint my nails, phone a friend, exercise for 10 minutes, write one sentence of that novel you want to write, google suppliers for that business idea you have”, you get the idea.
Under Important I write things that has to happen that day like posting orders, laundry, clean that thing that’s been growing in the fridge…hey, I didn’t judge you earlier! All the mundane but important things. But only one or two things. Even if you have 200 important things on your to-do list, pick the most important.
Under Get Started I write things that I would like to do, but it’s not urgent. Things that I can do ahead of time to make tomorrow easier. For instance, I’m busy sorting through my daughter’s clothes. My goal for Wednesday might be to “Finish sorting clothes”, so under Tuesday’s “Get started” I’ll write “Find boxes to pack clothes and find organisations where I can drop clothes off” so that my time on Wednesday can be focused just on packing clothes. If my Goal is to finish a blogpost on Friday, my Get Started on Wednesday might be to take photos and on Thursday I will start getting the photos and text together.
I find that I waste a lot of time when I’m not certain of what my next step should be, and that is what I’m trying to fix with this print out. Break down your goals into little bit sizes and spread it over the entire week. You are more likely to succeed when your goal is achievable (small) and you’ve set a deadline. Even if something small takes you the whole week, atleast you are getting started right?
So download it here, laminate it and reuse it every week. Let me know if it helps you!