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Tackle the assignment you dread

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by on
in Workplace Communication

You're a model of efficiency ... except when it comes to that one task you dread. Whether it's filing, completing an assignment for your "difficult" manager or approaching the boss about a raise, you fall prey to the procrastination monster.

Now, in addition to leaving something undone, you're stressed and frustrated. You know the answer is "Just do it," so push yourself along with these tactics:

  • Recognize your stalling tactics, whether they are obsessively checking e-mail or tidying your workstation. Each time you turn to one of those time-wasters, remind yourself: "I'm doing this not because it needs to be done, but because I'm putting off something that does need to be done."
  • Don't cheat on priorities. Work on each assignment as it comes up on your priority list, even if you don't have enough time to complete it in one sitting. In a few minutes, you can complete one piece of the puzzle, and that's one piece you won't have to complete tomorrow.
  • Address the worst that can happen. If fear of failure paralyzes you, follow the "What if ...?" scenario to its conclusion. What if the boss hates the report you write? If you deliver it now, you'll still have time to revise it.

Finally, dismiss the excuse that procrastination can actually help you. ("I work better under pressure," etc.) Success comes to those who know what they have to do, then do it ... not those who put it off.

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