Do you have a tendency to wait until the last minute to do anything, but then you get frustrated when it’s not exactly how you imagined it to be?
If that sounds like you—you’re not alone! I feel your pain! And, just like you, I’ve heard all the advice from keeping lists, to using planners, to taking medications to help with inattentivity, and none of it works for me.
What I’ve learned is that the harder I try to change the behaviors and work in recommended systems, the less productive and the more unhappy and unsatisfied with my work that I am.
In fact, what I’ve come to discover through years of research, and trial and error, is that working with my urge to procrastinate and make everything perfect instead of against it is what makes me stand out from everyone else doing the same things I am.
What do I mean by that? Well, you’ll just have to keep reading to find out…
Step #1: Create A Custom Workflow
You know you’re going to procrastinate. You know you’re going to want it perfect. So, when you design a workflow for getting things done, you need to take that into consideration instead of trying to make yourself adhere to lists and schedules.
How do you do that? For me, I find that if I add an extra week or two onto my deadlines for procrastination time, that I manage to finish most of my projects by the deadline, or early.
Now, sometimes unforeseen things happen and I do miss deadlines, but I am more likely than not to hit them when I add in extra time to pad my schedule.
On top of that, I also use lists and planners loosely. I’ll plan out my time to see how much leeway I have with the schedule when things come up (aka: an agile approach to project management, which you can learn more about here: https://www.atlassian.com/agile/project-management), but I don’t stick to them to a T.
I might miss a short-term deadline here or there, but I stick to my long-term deadlines, which are typically when I’m announcing or releasing things publicly to an audience and not just tracking what I’m doing for my own purposes.
Step #2: Embrace the 80/20 Rule
If you’re into self-help or you’ve already read some resources on this topic, you’ve probably come across the 80/20 rule before. If not, I’m going to explain it to you so we’re on the same page.
The 80/20 rule is when you get something good enough to release it and promote it, but it won’t be 100% perfect.
I do this so I met deadlines, but I like to go back and beef it up that other 20%, or get as close as I can, later when I have more time in-between projects.
By doing it this way, I allow myself to get it released, while still giving myself time later to make it as close to perfect as I can so it doesn’t drive me crazy forever.
Step #3: Take Supplements For Focused Energy
I know, everyone is a caffeine addict and they can’t accomplish anything without a coffee IV drip once they reach a certain age or rung on the career ladder, but as a medical professional (I have a degree in Veterinary Technology, which is similar to a human RN), I have to caution you on over-caffeinating.
A better approach is to take L-Theanine and MCT. L-Theanine is found naturally in black tea (unsweet is the best choice for health reasons; you don’t need that extra sugar), and you can get it in supplement form, or in specific brands/blends of coffee.
MCT is found naturally in coconut oil, but you can also get it in supplement form, or in specific brands/blends of coffee.
My favorite routine for focused energy is to take 200 mg L-Theanine in supplement form 2 times per day, drink unsweetened black tea (Lipton is my favorite brand), and drink 1 cup of my Genius Coffee with MCT and Turmeric in it daily.
In conclusion, if you follow the 3 steps listed above, you should see a significant improvement in your overall productivity, ability to meet deadlines, and satisfaction with your work. If you try these methods, please let me know how they work for you by leaving a comment below.
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Every book, podcast channel, and online course I’ve ever consumed — and would highly recommend — live inside a google doc that I’m frequently updating.
This g-doc is organized by topic and contains links to purchase, listen to, or watch every item on the list.
Not only that, but, you can print a copy of the list for yourself any time you want — which is perfect for shopping in bookstores like McKays or Books-A-Million.
You can even bookmark the list in your favorite browser so you have easy access to it all the time.
Pro tip: For Chrome users, create a folder on your bookmarks bar titled “business resources.” Add the link to the g-doc to that folder for easy access to the resources list.
For items on the list that have reviews — like the one you’re reading now — I’ll include a link to the review as well.