Are you rushing around trying to finish everything you write on your to do list? Do you feel like there’s never enough time in a day?
I’ve been there too.
As a business owner, I have to be disciplined because I don’t have anyone telling me what to do. I had to learn this lesson by myself. I had to prioritise my tasks and self-care. If I stressed myself out, I couldn’t bring positivity into people’s lives, I couldn’t teach my Pilates classes, and I couldn’t progress in a successful and healthy way.
When I launched Shapes Studio two years ago, I didn’t like the look of my website and, as a consequence, I didn’t feel proud of it enough to launch it.
That’s when I learnt my lesson: I had to stop being a perfectionist in order to stop procrastinating.
I had to focus on the fact that my website was live and, for this reason, I could reach more people. After one year, the universe brought me someone who made my vision for my website come to life.
If I stopped in that moment and procrastinated my launch because I needed everything to be perfect, I wouldn’t be writing this blog post today. I’d still be caught up in deciding which colours to use for the logo.
Procrastinators and perfectionists love having deadlines and we love performing under stress.
Have you ever experienced that you perform better when you have a closer deadline and when you have more than one thing to do a day?
Well, if you are like this, you need to allow yourself to be as productive as possible when your day is packed with things and activities to do. You need to learn to be motivated by inspiration from your short and long-term goals, not by stress and anxiety.
Although many of us think we perform better when we’re doing a million things at once, we need to understand that this is not sustainable.
To be successful and healthy, we need to embrace the 80/20 lifestyle, the same lifestyle I teach my clients at for food (80% of what you eat should be healthy, 20% can be treats!). This is the same with our work and life in general: 80% is the level we want to be always productive, not 100%, otherwise we will be 100% unproductive because our battery will run low eventually.
Let’s explore these five tips together, grab your journal and start to take notes!
1. Change your relationship with time
If you want to stop procrastinating, change your mindset. Instead of thinking that you don’t have time during the day, start thinking that you have all the time you want.
Set positive affirmations like “I create time” and “Time is what I make of it.” Even if you don’t believe it at the beginning, keep telling yourself this positive affirmation like a mantra every day.
Repetition will help you to believe that you have time.
This change in mindset will help you feel in charge of your time.
So, instead of not doing things because you think you don’t have time, you will do them in the exact amount of time you have. For example, if you have only 10 minutes for exercise in the morning, instead of saying, “I cannot exercise because I have only 10 minutes in the morning”, try saying “I have 10 minutes for exercise”. This way, you focus on the time you have instead of the time you don’t seem to have.
2. Write down your top three projects every day
This is where I need you to focus and create your ideal day, which should include choosing your most important things to do on the day.
This doesn’t need to be only work related. You need to think about how you want to spend your day in its entirety. For example, this could include doing your admin, working out, and cooking your favourite meal.
Try to accomplish the toughest one before lunchtime, as we are always more productive in the morning. Everything you do after lunch should be considered a bonus. You will feel so good after achieving more than you planned and you’ll see how organically you create time to fit in more things.
3. Convert your to-do list into a digital calendar
Now that you know what to do for the day, write your task on your digital calendar and block out the exact time you need.
For example, if you decide to train in the morning at 7am for 20 minutes, block this time on your calendar and put it as a recurring event for every day or every second day. If it is not on your calendar, it won’t ever happen!
4. Plan to plan
Plan your week ahead of time and start to allocate time for routine you established for yourself, like exercise, meeting a friend regularly on a certain day/time, call with your assistant, accountant and so on.
Plan things ahead like beauty and medical appointments in advance. This will free up more time in your days.
5. Appreciate the little moments
The best moments of our lives happen between planned events. Don’t try to be superwoman or superman, finishing your to-do list as soon as possible.
Don’t forget about life: don’t forget to smile at your barista when they serve your morning coffee; even if you’re in a rush, a simple gesture like this can uplift your mood.
Don’t take for granted the beautiful, simple moments during your day that sometimes we don’t notice as too busy in managing tasks; these moments are the ones that can make the difference in our day, from a “good morning” to your colleague, to a random call to a friend you haven’t seen in ages.
Strive to fill up your day with positivity from the moment you wake up. That way, your day will feel fuller and more satisfying, which will help you appreciate your time and use it wisely.
Remember that Rome wasn’t built in a day. There is time to do everything, but not all at once.
We are not robots, and we cannot be productive every day. Try to speak kindly to yourself when you feel like you didn’t achieve that much. Treat yourself like you would treat your child or loved one, with LOVE.
If you are interested in talking more about procrastination and stress management, and how this can affect your health and lifestyle, please get in touch with me to book a free health consultation.
I look forward to hearing from you,