Procrastination – Get That Monkey Off Your Back

Procrastination – Get That Monkey Off Your Back

It’s an almost typical Sunday morning. I woke up pleased with myself for “sleeping in.” After all, it was almost 8 o’clock and every day I’m usually up around 6:30 am. I was at the computer doing an “inventory” of things on my mind for a post when I saw the clock on the monitor. I forgot to turn the clocks back.

It doesn’t make any difference because I love writing on Sunday mornings, but will someone please tell me why I suddenly felt tired when I saw that it was 6:55 am?

One of the things that got me up so early was a project I wanted to get done that I’ve been procrastinating finishing. I know, I talk a good game about making decisions quickly; not missing opportunities and staying focused, but sometimes life gets in the way. But even that’s a lame excuse for putting things off.

Procrastination is one of the most common and deadliest of diseases and its toll on success and happiness is heavy.
Wayne Gretsky

Here’s my point. The minute you start to procrastinate about doing a particular task, you put a “monkey on your back,” which sits there and slowly starts taking pleasure away from things you enjoy doing. It’s constantly whispering in your ear reminding you that you can’t relax.

Then it starts to grow. It gets louder and heavier to carry because every time you do something that’s simply frivolous and fun, the monkey gets in the way.

Here is how to kill that monkey!

• Prioritize a list of things you need to get done.
• Keep that list where you can see it at all the time. For me, I love my whiteboard because I’m constantly updating my list. It feels good to cross something off the list that’s completed.
• Knock off the “low-hanging” fruit. That means, do the easy things that can help change business or revenue and can be quickly implemented.
• Ask for help! This one is the hardest for me because I’m a terrible delegator. I think I have to do everything myself. I rationalize that it’s easier for me to do than it is to explain to somebody how they can help me.
• And, when you miss something or just don’t do it as quickly as you should have, don’t “should” on yourself. Stop beating yourself up. You can’t ask for more, even of yourself, than just doing the best you can.

One thing to not procrastinate about, no matter what time it is on the clocks in your house – hug somebody special in your life. Don’t put it off letting anything get in the way. Enjoy the day without the monkey on your back. It isn’t procrastination when you take needed time off to just appreciate everything in your life, especially those people most important to you.

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This article was written by
Skip Cohen

Skip Cohen is an industry executive recognized for his diversity. He has served as past president of Hasselblad USA, Rangefinder/WPPI and in 2009 founded his own educational consulting company. In 2013 he launched Skip Cohen University dedicated to helping artists build a stronger business. He's a regular speaker at a variety of conventions and writes for several different magazines, as well as having two business classes at Lynda.com. Click above to visit the SCU blog.

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