If you think that you work better and are more productive when you do things under a looming deadline, you’re probably mistaken. The truth is that you just feel more satisfied with the fact that you accomplished your tasks even with the time almost running out. Did you know that by getting rid of your procrastination habits, you can be more productive, effective and less stressed out? Yes it is easier said than done, but the fact remains that it is very much doable.

There is always enough time to change bad habits. What’s important is for you to want it and to be willing to do anything to do it. Here are some of the things you can do to ditch procrastination:

1. Learn how to prioritize.
So what do you do when you’re procrastinating? Do you watch movies, chat with friends on social media, or perhaps spend almost the entire day sleeping? Whatever it is, do you think it’s more important than what you should actually be doing? By learning how to prioritize, you’re actually recognizing the importance of the things you should do. Make a list of the tasks that require your immediate action, and set a specific length of time you should use to accomplish them. You will find that you have enough free time afterwards to do what you want to do when you’re procrastinating.

2. Be realistic when determining the amount of time needed for your tasks.
This is a tough thing to do, especially for procrastinators. Nevertheless, if you want to make use of your time well, you can’t focus too much on time itself. What you should pay more attention to is the completion of your tasks. By keeping in mind the things you have to do, you will not have problems with when to do them. Take into consideration also your personal needs, like to relax, go out with friends and family, and so on.

3. Don’t forget to reward yourself.
We all want gratification, of course. In this case, since you are the one who is challenging yourself to be efficient and productive, you are also the one who should give a reward to yourself. Think of that thing you really want to have or do, and promise yourself you’re going to have that once you have accomplished something on time. This may sound silly to you, but it really works.

4. Get someone to hold you accountable.
It becomes all too easy to ignore deadlines when you know you’re not going to be blamed for it. Thus, it will be to your benefit if you could have someone who will constantly remind you of your responsibilities and the need for you to do certain things at a particular time. This will give you just enough pressure to get up on your feet and do what needs to be done.

5. Make a list of the consequences of procrastination.
Make it a habit to list down the undesirable things that could happen when you procrastinate. This will serve as a warning to you, and a reminder that you have several things to attend to. This list will also give you reasons to celebrate later on once you have successfully done your tasks.

If you find all these things overwhelming and you’re starting to doubt if you can do it, then having a personal coach could make a huge difference. Oftentimes we just need someone who is wise and experienced enough to tell us what we should do to make things right in our careers and in our lives.

Author's Bio: 

Cecile Peterkin is a certified career and retirement coach, and a registered member of the Career Professionals of Canada and the International Coach Federation. She is also the Founder and Senior Career Strategist at Cosmic Coaching Centre, provider of career and life management services for middle managers and mid-career professionals across Canada, United States and Europe.