Old Habits Are Hard To Break – Accountability Is Key To Beating Procrastination
“Ninety-nine percent of all failures come from people who have a habit of making excuses.” — George Washington Carver
Beating procrastination can be hard. We do well for a few days, but then old habits set back in, or we get frustrated with our lack of apparent progress. Nothing goes fast enough. If you face a small setback at this point, it may be enough to stop working on what you wanted to accomplish in the first place. Thankfully there’s something you can do to greatly improve your chances of success. Accountability.
Track Your Progress
Start by tracking what you do. You can do this via a simple habit tracker. Use a box for each day of the week and check it off or fill it in when you do the thing you told yourself you would do. Keep tracking until it becomes a habit or until the project is done.
For larger projects that you may or may not work on a daily basis, it helps to write down your goal and then break it into milestones. Record your progress and how much closer you’re inching to each of your goals.
Make Daily To-Do Lists
Write out a list of everything you want to get done for the day. I find it helpful to do this the evening before. Experience has taught me that a limit of 2-3 major items to accomplish work very well. (Along with the standard routine daily tasks that are a MUST) You don’t want it to overwhelm yourself, but you do want to challenge yourself to get more done. The list holds YOU accountable because you can see in black and white if you procrastinated or not. WRITE THEM ON PAPER.
Sidenote: Knowing at the end of the day you have accomplished is a strong motivator for tomorrow.
Tell Someone About Your Plans
If there’s something you’ve been struggling to get done, tell someone else about your plans to finally tackle it. Call a friend, tell your spouse, or announce it on social media. Announcing on Social Media is a powerful mechanism, but share with those you have a True Relationship with.vEncourage the people you’re sharing with to check back with you on how you did. It may be the little extra push you need to stop procrastinating.
Find An Accountability Buddy
“Accountability breeds response-ability.” — Stephen Covey
Last but not least, find someone else who’s procrastinating and start holding each other accountable. This could be as simple as checking in once in the morning to declare what you each want to get done, and then again at the end of the day to see what happened. Knowing someone else is right there with you can be super motivating.
Give each of these procrastination beating strategies a try and see which ones give you the best results. Like anything else, procrastinating is a habit and you can get out of it and turn yourself into the motivated and productive version of yourself you want to be.
Have you had success with Accountability partners?