Sometimes we do it when we’re overwhelmed by a task and don’t know where to start. Sometimes we don’t even realize we’re doing it. But suddenly it becomes clear that we’ve been wasting valuable time and need to get back on track. Procrastination is a nasty habit to which we can all relate to some degree; it causes not only a lack of productivity, but often leaves us feeling guilty and more stressed.  Sure, we all have ‘off days’ and need to give ourselves a break now and then. But when procrastination becomes a regular part of your routine, it can have a significant negative impact on your life, by decreasing your motivation and self-confidence.

Here are some pointers to help you focus, move forward and begin living to your potential.

5 Tips To Getting Sh*t Done:

1/ Make a To-Do List.  You can do this using an app, typing it on your computer, or the old-fashioned way, with pen and paper — however you feel most comfortable. Set realistic goals for your day, and keep your list short. Break down large tasks into smaller steps.  This will give you a sense of productivity and encouragement throughout the day. Feel the satisfaction that comes with crossing items off (or deleting them) as you finish them.

2/ Schedule breaks.  Plan short breaks to increase your productivity. Even the most focused among us needs to ‘press pause’ now and then, to regroup and come back to work more efficiently. These breaks should feel like ‘rewards’ for your productivity. Be flexible and honest with yourself. If you’ve scheduled a break and don’t feel ready for one, post-pone it a bit; meanwhile, if your attention is lagging or you’re really stuck on something, have your break earlier than planned.

3/ Share your process with someone close to you.  Share your immediate goals with a close friend, partner or family member — someone you trust and whom you feel is genuinely supportive. This will motivate you to be accountable in achieving your short-term goals. When someone else knows what we’re trying to accomplish, we’re that much more able to follow through and get it done.

4/ Keep good company.  Spend your free time wisely, connecting with other inspired and inspiring people. Keep your circle tight. Avoid negative people at all costs (unless you’re an invincible dragon, in which case please give me your secret). In order to be your best, you need to maintain a positive mindset. You don’t have time or energy to be emotionally drained or brought down by other people’s negativity.

5/ Choose the best app to ‘amp up’ your day.  There are many apps out there designed to help us get organized, be productive and avoid distractions. Some of our favorites are: Timeful (a calendar and to-do list in one), Basecamp (for individuals and small companies), Sunrise (which seamlessly connects all calendar programs), and Freedom (to block digital distractions).

* Song to get you in the mood: 


“Work it” –  classic Missy Elliott.  (Now, get back to work.)