Procrastination is the enemy for self-employment as a ghost writer. If you don’t conquer your tendency to do this, you will find yourself constantly working under stressful deadlines, and you may find yourself losing clients. The following 6 tips for conquering the procrastination tendency will break its grip on your work life.
Procrastination Prevention Tip #1
Never look at procrastination as a way to push something you want to avoid into the future. It only extends the time you fret and stress over it. Rather recognize procrastination for what it really is. It’s a technique that lets you waste valuable time worrying, when you could use that same time productively.
Commit to working on those tough projects, rather than pushing them aside. You’ll get more done if you do.
Procrastination Prevention Tip #2
If you are finding it hard to know where to start, try to divide the task into logical steps. It isn’t procrastination if you tackle one part of a project at a time. Just as studying one subject all day can weary the mind, working on the same project all day can reduce productivity for some people. If you aren’t “on a roll,” then working on more than one project concurrently can be a way to retain sanity.
For example, a typical ghost writing book project will involve research and topic/chapter development. These are two steps you can schedule. Once you’ve developed a chapter outline, you have the next steps outlined for you. The outline must be confirmed by your client. Then you move into more research to develop the separate chapters and interviews with your client.
Procrastination Prevention Tip #3
Schedule each project for a specific date and time slot. Sure, you may have to shift your schedule sometimes, but the act of planning when you are going to start something, prevents you from procrastinating.
Setting goals for what you want to achieve helps you work at peak efficiency. Refusing to push something to the side, when you have scheduled yourself to deal with it, leaves you feeling empowered when the job is done.
Procrastination Prevention Tip #4
Look over a project that seems especially challenging, the night before you have scheduled yourself to work on it. Then focus on that job first thing in the morning. Your subconscious mind will work for you through the night. The creative juices will flow more freely.
Procrastination Prevention Tip #5
Quit trying to estimate how long you think something will take. Often, projects that aren’t appealing to you will loom much larger in your mind than they should. The best strategy to take is simple. Just do it!
Sometimes when you are done, you will feel like it hasn’t been your best work. Then it’s okay to set it aside for an hour or even a day. Having made the effort, you will find it easier to connect with your personal muse, when you return to your task. Meanwhile, you haven’t procrastinated. You’ve made progress.
Procrastination Prevention Tip #6
When you feel like you are so walled in that you can’t break the box, talk to someone about it. I don’t know how many times my husband has been a sounding board for my frustrations with a client or his/her project. Most of the time, he doesn’t even have to give me ideas. Just talking about it generates positive ideas. Next thing I know, I’m ready to move forward and get the job done.