Sunday Times

Put an end to procrastin­ation

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● Many of us are all too familiar with procrastin­ation, finding all sorts of superurgen­t things to do rather than the one thing we really have to do, but we can break out of its clutches.

“We can influence and change our behaviour, so productivi­ty becomes a joy,” says Helene Vermaak, business director at The Human Edge. She advises:

● Put your tasks in writing in your calendar, so they are harder to avoid. This comes from Joseph Grenny, author and co-founder of Vital Smarts, The Human Edge’s US partner. “I am faithful to my calendar; if it says I am supposed to do something, I tend to do it,” he says;

● When the project requires many sessions, end the session at the point it will be easiest to continue in the next, so you can look forward to returning to it;

● Each time you meet a mini goal by completing a section of your task, take the time to enjoy the flood of endorphins;

● It is hugely gratifying to tick off one of your tasks on your to-do list written on an actual piece of paper; and

● Beware of overdoing things and risking burnout by having a never-ending, impossible-to-complete list of tasks. Everyone needs down time to recharge after a big project.–Margaret Harris

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