You know how it goes: the list of things to do in your head gets longer and longer, priorities fall lower on your list as life gets in the way, and the end of the week leaves you stressed and scrambling to get it all done. If you’re a human being, you’ve likely found yourself in this situation at least once.

Studies show that 25% of adults consider procrastination to be a defining personality trait for them. Whether you are in school, work in a cubicle, own a small business, or work from home, we can all be victims of procrastination. It doesn’t have to be this way. Here are a few tips for how to beat procrastination and make deadlines.

Plan ahead
Planning ahead is a basic tip, but it’s easier said than done. One of the best tools for planning ahead is a monthly calendar or a daily planner. Personally, I use both. A monthly calendar helps me get an overview of the big events going on in a month so I can adequately prepare. A daily planner helps me organize my daily deadlines and commitments.

Create goals
Creating goals has many benefits but is great for making deadlines. When you are assigned a deadline, create a goal timeline for when you would like to complete your task and stick to it. It is proven that if you write down your goals you are more likely to achieve them! You can even try to complete your tasks one or two days before the actual deadline, so you don’t have to stress about it in the days before.

Make daily to-do lists
Daily to-do lists are the combination of planning and goal setting. It is practical preparation for making your deadlines!

Give yourself an incentive
One of the hardest things about procrastination is that there are simply other tasks that are more attractive than the one you actually need to get done. Make those tasks the incentive for completing the less attractive task. For example, write the email and then check your social media.

Organize your priorities
Every so often I need to re-evaluate my priorities. As life changes, so do your priorities. Same goes with your professional life. Write them out. This will orient the way you plan your tasks and hopefully place the appropriate focus on important tasks.


Article by
Abigail Dycus
Content Writer and Researcher

Abigail Dycus