“I don’t have time.”
I hear people say this a lot. They’re overwhelmed by everything they have to get done, so they procrastinate on doing what’s most important. The busyness of life leaves them saying “I don’t have time” to the things in their lives that really matter.
You’re right. You don’t have time.
You don’t have time to procrastinate.
You don’t have time to wait to get healthy.
You don’t have time to put off your goals.
You don’t have time to postpone becoming a solid partner or parent.
You don’t have time to drag your feet starting that new business.
It’s time to quit asking life for rainchecks.
How many things in your life have you put off? How many times, instead of taking the actions you know will lead you toward your goals, have you procrastinated and set them aside – because you didn’t have time? How often have you told yourself, “I’ll start that tomorrow?”
When we do that, tomorrow becomes next week. Next week becomes next month. The months add up, and this time next year, you’re no closer to achieving the things you said truly matter.
Time is not your friend, and it is not on your side. You have no idea what tomorrow will bring, or next week, next month, or next year. It’s a gamble to wait any longer to focus on what really matters. If we’re going to get real here for a moment, procrastination is just a nice way to say, “I don’t actually care that much.”
Here are three tips to solve for this…
1. Protect Your Time – Looking at how I spend my days, the things I’ve said are important and decided to invest energy into often risk getting hijacked. Sometimes they get hijacked by things that are urgent or on fire. More often, they get hijacked by distractions and time-wasters, a.k.a. YouTube and social media. I’ve had to get very clear on what those hijackers look like, identifying them and working to keep them at bay. Protecting my time has been Step 1 in eliminating my procrastination.
2. Schedule Your Time – Part of protecting your time has to include scheduling it. The deeper I dive into learning about managing my time, the more I’ve come to understand that scheduling is essential. I need to put the most important things in my life on my calendar. Then, I need to approach those scheduled activities with a high degree of respect, removing procrastination as an option for myself.
The challenge you will face, when you start to schedule things, will be breaking appointments with yourself. You’d never do that if you had an important appointment with someone else. So why do it to yourself? You, and your goals, are important. Treat yourself that way. Schedule it… then do it.
3. Multiply Your Time – Delegation is the art of time multiplication, and a great way to battle procrastination. Look at all of the things you have in front of you to do, and find the pieces that you can have other people help you with. Then, ask them for help.
Your time is a finite resource – you only get so much of it each day. Delegating and asking for help allows you to apply more time and energy to your goals then you could otherwise invest alone. The trick to this tip is simple. Don’t procrastinate your delegation. Delegate before you do anything else. Then, while you’re focusing on other work and goals, you’ll keep making progress on the things you’ve handed off.
Take back your time, quit procrastinating, and take back your results. See procrastination for what it is – something that is holding you back from achieving your goals. Identify it when you start leaning into it and use these three tips to keep it from hijacking your results. There’s no rocket science here. We just have to become intentional about procrastination, how we’re using our time, and what’s holding us back. Then, we need to make some simple changes.
Ready for more?
Follow me here for more insights like this one. You’ll also get massive value out of the Grit Meets Growth podcast that I share with Chris Cathers. Find it here or on your favorite podcast platform, and let’s all make the most of the time we’ve got!