Do you procrastinate until the last minute or do you see to it right away? Procrastination is the thief of time, they say. But is it really?
No time like the present
It is a convincing proverb. What I manage to do today, I don’t have to deal with tomorrow or, vice versa, what I put off today awaits me tomorrow possibly causing more stress because of the increase of workload. However, how many stress-free days have you had, because you worked your butt off the day before?
How many stress-free days have you had because you worked your butt off the day before?
Isn’t it more like you try to do stuff in advance, work to breaking point (or beyond) and the next day is just as busy and not at all better. It seems that trying to squeeze everything into today doesn’t work that well. Could procrastination be the solution?
Nope. A general last moment kind of attitude spread on your whole life, like butter on toast, surely isn’t the key to optimal timing and success.
Neither procrastination nor trying to get everything done in a day is the ideal use of your time and energy. Everything has its pros and cons. How can we make use of an occasional procrastination in order to work more efficiently and avoid stress?
Consult your pillow
Your pillow truly is a good advisor, especially when you face extra tricky or highly emotional stuff instead of dealing with it in the heat of the moment.
The stress contained in a complicated task or a tedious customer request fades away over night, because our brilliant human brain doesn’t really sleep. It works on finding solutions to our problems. Next day we wake up and work faster and smarter. Thank you very much clever brain.
Some things even have the courtesy to take care of themselves.
Some things even have the courtesy to take care of themselves in the course of time – sometimes even within a day. Time can safe us a lot of effort and nerves by simply doing what it does best: pass by. Very handy, this concept of time, and so wonderfully amazing.
Plan ahead for the unplanned
Unplanned, additional tasks show up every day, don’t they? They mess up our perfect schedule and cause stress. It is astonishing how our colleagues, customers, red lights and a thousand other things just refuse to stick to our individual, carefully planned schedule.
However, we can prepare for that. Instead of filling our schedule to the rim, we can schedule empty spaces, which will gladly absorb the unplanned, additional stuff without causing us any stress or time pressure.
In case you are very lucky and live through one of the endangered kind of days on which everything goes according to plan, you can use the empty spaces to do stuff from tomorrow in advance. Yay!
Don’t dig into every email and problem as soon as it shows up. Make sure to interrupt your work flow for urgent matters only. Everything that doesn’t qualify as case of emergency, can wait till later or become part of your schedule tomorrow.
Beware: A small issue could be masquerading as an emergency.
Beware: A small issue could be masquerading as an emergency. On first glance, we may not be able to see if it truly is as urgent as it pretends to be. Take a moment, take a breath, clear your head and then decide if this issue really deserves your immediate attention or if it can be pushed off.
Do what you have to do according to your schedule and then take time off. Use your evenings to attend to a very important daily task: Recharge and spend time with your loved ones.
When you don’t burn yourself out today, tomorrow is going to be much more pleasant. You won’t start the day already exhausted, but instead you’ll be well rested, energized and have a clear mind.
When you don’t burn yourself out today, tomorrow is going to be much more pleasant.
This way you can prioritize effortlessly, juggle the unplanned stuff with ease and after hours you can celebrate the fact that you have found a wonderful balance between squeezing everything into today and pushing everything off until tomorrow. Congratulate yourself daily for managing your time and energy with care and cleverness.
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