How Do you Overcome Procrastination?

The above question is from our January 15 edition of PMP in Practice. We would love to hear your comments as well!

Even the best of Project Managers will have something on their To-Do list they just can’t seem to get done. It may be an uncomfortable conversation or some research on a new technology. Below are some of the responses we received to the question “What are some of the things that have a tendency to linger on your To-Do list for awhile and what steps do you take to make sure they get done?”:

  • If you have avoided it more than twice, then there definitely is some issue. Find a discreet friend who will just listen to you, and let you talk through all of the “what ifs” and “yeah, buts” until they’re gone. The main thing is to find someone who will listen attentively, but not try to fix you or explain you.
  • Set times on the items on your To-Do List. If something doesn’t get finished in that time, you can decide to finish or put it back on the bottom of the list and I move on to something else. It means you can get traction on almost everything. What you will find interesting is how often you give something an hour of your time and find it’s done in 20 minutes!
  • Although it sounds like a cliché, the following advice can help: “Do not put off until tomorrow that which you can get someone else to do today.” Procrastination is sometimes the sign of overload. A good manager delegates everything other to people can do as well or better.

Plus, we had no less than a dozen responses along the lines of “I’ll get around to telling you my response later”. It’s good to see that humor is alive and well in the Project Management community!


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