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A nice warm bubble bath in the middle of the day, reading your favorite book, going to the movies, watching your favorite television show, socializing at Starbucks with a friend, taking your puppy to the park or a long nap at noon are wonderful diversions when used as a reward for accomplishing goals or just an escape from the normality of the day.

 

Diversions are great and I highly recommend them but please be very careful, they are also major culprits that lead to procrastination. Your reluctance to start an important project to instead indulge in a relaxing diversion may be an internal emotional reaction to fear. Fear that the project will not be successful, fear that the project will be a waste of your time or even fear that the tasks required to complete the project are too difficult. It is much easier for you to take a nap or socialize with friends than to start an unpleasant or tedious task

 

There are two types of Diversions:

 

Reward Diversion Procrastination Diversion

 

A nap at noon after working on your goals since 5:00 am is a reward diversion; a nap at noon after a morning of socializing, reading the newspaper & emails in your inbox is a procrastination diversion. Procrastination Diversions take you away from your goals; they become time wasters & external reactions to internal fears.

 

To avoid procrastination diversions, you must be honest with yourself and determine what and why you are avoiding particular tasks. Once the fear is identified, ask yourself, What is the worst that can happen? List the consequences of not completing the project, list the pros of the completed project, then take action and began the tasks. If it is a big project, break tasks down to small doable daily tasks. Don't worry about any mistakes, just get started!

 

The next time you are enjoying a diversion, be mindful if it is a reward or procrastination diversion, if you are procrastinating stop and take control of your time.

Join the discussion 2 Comments

  • Great article – really hit home today. I sometimes get caught up in the fear that my project is "not perfect."  So I procrastinate finishing it.  This article puts my head back on straight. Thanks. 

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