Thompson Rivers University

Overcoming Procrastination

  Posted on: April 1, 2016

by Jessica Messerer-Trosin

The “Salami” Technique

• Try to break a large, daunting task into smaller jobs that you can easily accomplish—just like a salami needs to be sliced to be eaten.

• Slice your project into small, manageable tasks that can be completed in 15-20 minutes each.

• When you complete a task, cross it off your list, giving yourself a feeling of accomplishment.

Your first task should be writing your Salami list!

Systematic Development of New Habits

Procrastination is a behaviour rooted in habit. People who procrastinate think, “This task must be done, but it is unpleasant; therefore, I will put it off as long as I can.”

Conversely, those who don’t procrastinate think, “This task is unpleasant, but it has to be done; therefore, I will do it now.”

How to make a new habit:

  • Right now, begin one task that you have been putting off.
  • Schedule a time for when you will do another unpleasant item on your list.

The most important things on your list deserve their own allocated blocks of time, but the most unpleasant things are usually what you procrastinate doing. Schedule a time when you will start them.

The Balance-Sheet Method

 On the left side of a sheet of paper, write down all the reasons you are procrastinating on a particular task.

• On the right side, write down all the benefits if you complete the task. You’ll probably find that the list on the right will be much longer than the list on the left. This will motivate you to begin the task sooner.

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