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Remedies for Procrastination

In previous posts, I’ve talked about “Flow Killers”, and how to get back in the flow.

Today I want to back up a level and look at the pieces of the procrastination puzzle.

A high-level procedure for overcoming procrastination might look something like this:

Recognize Procrastination –> Find a Remedy –> Apply the Remedy

One problem we face in overcoming procrastination is that there are many remedies. And usually only one or two of them is/are the magic bullet(s) we need to overcome a particular case of procrastination.

I’ve listed over 20 potential remedies below, and I suspect there are many others I haven’t listed.

Because there are so many potential remedies, we need an effective troubleshooting guide to find the right remedy for a particular case of procrastination, and that will be the topic of future posts.

In this post I simply want to ask what are the remedies for procrastination? I will post the list I came up with, and then I want to ask you if you can think of other remedies for procrastination.

The Initial List of Remedies For Procrastination:

  1. Clarify your goals.
  2. Get stuff out of your head and into your planning tool
  3. Break a plan down further
  4. Re-factor a plan into a clear, compelling construction story.
  5. Resolve conflict in plans.
  6. Uncover dependencies in a plan so you can do things in the right order
  7. Brainstorm/free write/outline (discover what the pieces of the puzzle are)
  8. Break off a SCRUM sprint to work towards a feedback-oriented deadline.
  9. Re-prioritize your project queue using cost-benefit/risk-reward analysis
  10. Schedule items
  11. Research a solution to an obstacle
  12. Consult with an expert about how to overcome an obstacle
  13. Outsource a task
  14. Insource a task
  15. Make changes to your work environment to reduce distraction (includes moving low priority plans to a maybe-later list)
  16. Implement a work/rest rhythm
  17. Improve physical energy: get rest/recreation/sleep/improve diet, etc.
  18. Play motivating music.
  19. Make yourself accountable to someone for completing a project
  20. Create a reward for yourself for completing a project
  21. Do mental contrasting to increase the perceived value of an outcome
  22. Create implementation intentions to rewire existing negative cues, or establish new positive cues for productive behavior.

That’s my list so far. If you can think of any others (or you want to ask a question or comment on this), post your comment/question below.

Thanks :-)

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