Raise your hand if you’re a procrastinator! Today I’m referring specifically to those of you who own your own business. I want to talk to those of you who don’t have someone watching over you in your business and guiding you – my fellow entrepreneurs and business owners.
I came up with some reasons, targeted to this like-minded group of individuals, as to why we may procrastinate in our business. I also included my two cents as to why we shouldn’t let that particular reason interfere!
The first reason is overconfidence. Can you relate to this? I remember being extremely prepped for tests in college, so I would procrastinate until the last minute before I began going over my notes. Sometimes people are so confident that they put things off and put them off.
In my business, people join a team and they may have done similar things in previous careers. They may have been in pharmaceutical sales or marketing, and they think they’re ready to hit the ground running. But they become so confident that they put things off because they think they already have the necessary skills and experience.
To this, I would remind you that every business is unique. You’ve never done this type of business before. In this business, we build relationships and we start conversations. If you don’t start them now, you’re shooting yourself in the foot. Don’t be overconfident!
The second reason is, frankly, they don’t know where to begin. They’re overwhelmed. To that, I would say that you are looking at your task as one big project. You need to break it down into little projects.
Here’s a really easy example to look at. Let’s pretend my kids came home from college and they dumped all of their laundry in my laundry room, and there was a huge mound in there. Hypothetically, of course 🙂 I’d obviously be ticked at this, and it would really overwhelm me.
The solution? I would have my boys divide those clothes into colors or fabrics. As they divide, the task becomes so much more manageable. Look at your project and find the ways you can break it down into manageable tasks.
I love to time block on my calendar. I put assignments and activities into separate hours, and I use post-it notes a lot. I break the task into manageable pieces. Don’t overwhelm yourself by focusing on the entire thing – focus on small tasks at a time.
The third reason is that they are just perfectionists, and they don’t want to start a job due to fear that it won’t be just right. To that, I say, no one is perfect. It doesn’t matter how much you think you are, you aren’t. Perfection is unattainable!
I want you to tell me the last thing you did that was absolutely perfect. A food you made, a project you completed, etc.…but there were NO flaws whatsoever. I bet you can’t! No one has ever done anything 100% perfectly. You will never do anything perfectly. Just get started!
The fourth reason is that in this industry, we do not have specific deadlines or bosses watching over our shoulders. We don’t have someone telling us what to do.
To that, I would say, set goals for yourself…whether they be quarterly, weekly, or monthly, just set goals. Give yourself those deadlines to keep yourself on track. Give yourself some boundaries and keep yourself accountable. You can even hire a business coach like myself to help you there, but no matter what, stay accountable to yourself.
The last reason is actually my favorite. I coach on this a lot, both my private clients and my direct marketing team. We procrastinate because of fear. Because of the unknown. Because we want to avoid pain.
We’ll do anything to get out of an unpleasant situation. We’ll avoid being told no or ridiculed. We’ll avoid stepping out of our comfort zone because we don’t want that rejection. We retreat.
The fact of the matter is, pain is never absolute. It’s never going to be there forever. If we run from pain, it’s like a monster chasing us, and believe me, it will chase us down. But if we stop and plant our feet and put our shoulders back and say – NO! I won’t be fearful of this! – It cowers. We gain control.
I heard something recently from a man who said, pain is like a tree. As soon as you see the tree, what is always going to be there when the sun comes up? A shadow! Well, that shadow is resistance. It’s always going to be there, but you have to face it. As soon as you stand up to it, it gets smaller.
Do Some Introspection
So these are 5 common reasons why people procrastinate in their businesses. Your homework from me today is to look at something you’re putting off. Is it to start the business? Is it to begin writing a book? Is it to begin traveling? Is it something out of your norm, but you’re avoiding it?
If you’re avoiding something, I want you to ask yourself about these 5 things. Am I overconfident? Is it because I don’t know where to begin? Am I a perfectionist? Is there no deadline? Or am I afraid?
Lean On Me!
If you can break all of those down and really start to do some introspection, I believe you will begin taking that next step! Remember…I’m ALWAYS here to listen and lend a helping hand or an encouraging word, too. Lean on the people you trust.
If you got value out of this, please share it with someone! Share it will a business partner. Share it with a friend. Just share it with anyone who needs that little nudge to get things going! The world would be a better place if we all paid it forward and showed kindness to one another!