Procrastination is one of the hardest things to overcome in this life. It's a guilty pleasure which we all enjoy and as marketers - we tend to do a lot of procrastinating!
It feels good when we procrastinate as we get to justify why we should not be doing any work but rather spend time doing meaningless things. However, when we do this, we end up hurting ourselves in the long run as most of the times we get stuffed with work and approaching deadlines.
In this article, we will discuss how to overcome this guilty pleasure, especially for marketers who often face targets and deadlines.
1. Set a Fake Deadline
The number 1 tool that we suggest in combating procrastination is by setting a fake deadline. When given work to do that is due tomorrow, create your own fake deadline that shows the deadline is today. By doing this, you will place yourself in a good position where you do not necessarily have to procrastinate as you would have already done the work on time.
Setting a fake deadline also helps in creating a better environment for you as you would have time to review your work once you finish it early enough. This will also save you that last minute panic which you rush to do everything all at once and might even end up spoil your weekends. So, let’s say you had a month to come up with a new or revised marketing strategy for an organization, plan your affairs such that you’re in say, 3 weeks, then use the remaining week to fine tune it!
2. Put The Phone Away
This has to be one of the hardest things to do when you are working. Your mobile phone can prove to be a big distraction if you place it near you. You might be tempted to check if you have any notifications on your social media pages or one of your friends has texted you. As a marketer, you probably interact will a lot of people whether in person, through email or even through social media. If not kept in check, you might find yourself spending too much time interacting with others at the expense of completing your work.
The best thing for you to do is to keep your phone away, far away, where it would not be easy for you to reach. You can place it in another room and put it on silent mode or better yet switch off.
3. Split Your Time
Another way to get things done is to split your time into small chunks that you can account for. Let’s say you have a marketing proposal to write and at the same time, you also have emails to answer, how do you go about these tasks?
Well, you start with most important one which is the proposal or the easiest one which could be the email, whichever works for you. Pick a task and do it for an hour then take a break. During your break, focus on the other task. This way you will be alternating between tasks. With time, you would have realized that you would have ended up doing all your tasks without even knowing it.
4. Have a Mantra
Mantras for marketers? Yes, having a mantra that you can repeat whenever you are tempted to side track from your duties is very important and may assist you whenever your phone starts “talking to you” asking you to hold it.
You can repeat something like "work on this proposal" several times to help you refocus.
This mantra can really help you get in your zone and is very effective in distracting you from the shiny stuff so that you can focus on your work.
5. Rewrite Your To Do List
Having a to do list is very important, it gives you a road map of how your day should go. It's a clear indicator that you are someone that is focused on accomplishing your goals. List the marketing tasks that you should do the night before, or early in the morning, in order of priority.
However, having a to do list can make you procrastinate due to how long one can get. This can make you go backward. Make it as short as possible. This way, you will not see it as something tedious to do and you will be excited in getting your work done.
6. Reward Yourself
To get things done much faster without having to procrastinate, you should reward yourself whenever you get a particular task done.
This is called dangling the carrot - it works on humans just as it would on rabbits. When you dangle a carrot in front of yourself you end doing work much faster and more efficient as you want to get done and get to your gift. Marketing can be tedious at times, so you need to get yourself motivated to keep on. Maybe that new strategy didn’t work out as planned or you’re facing budget cuts due to hard economic times, working towards a certain reward or gift that you’ve “dangled” in front of you will keep you focused. It’s very effective as you will be working for that light at the end of the tunnel.
7. Take a Walk
Once in a while, take a walk to get rid of fatigue. Being indoors can make you feel as if you’re not getting things done and are on the same spot. Taking a walk can help you rethink strategy and how to get things done. Walking can also help clear the mind and keeps you motivated to stay on course.
Walking also helps you study people and see how they behave, through that you can come up with better products and marketing strategies.
8. Sleep Early
Whenever you have a load of work to do and you can't seem to be getting anything done by 11 pm, it's time you go to bed. Sleep helps clear your mind and get ready for tomorrow where you will wake with extra strength to combat all the challenges of yesterday.
Sleeping early also gives you a chance of waking up early so that you can continue from where you left off last night. Once you go bed early you are not really procrastinating but rather preparing yourself to come back more equipped later, when you wake up fresh!
That's it from us folks! These are the most effective ways to overcome procrastination and become overly productive. Put these tips to use and you’ll see a great improvement in your day to day activities.
About the Author:
Richard Nolan is a writer and a private tutor, sharing his experience in spheres of writing, blogging, entrepreneurship and psychology. Richard writes for numerous blogs and gives useful tips for bloggers and students. Currently, Richard works as a general blog editor for EliteEssayWriters Follow him on Twitter and Facebook.