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Just Do It – Getting Unpleasant Tasks Done

Do you have a task (or three) that have been sitting on your desk or in your “to do file” for way too long?

Are you a master at procrastination when it comes to tackling unpleasant activities?

If you’ve answered yes to either question, are you also open to changing your current procrastination habits in order to be more productive and have more time leftover to do the fun stuff? Let’s explore how we can make some small mindset changes and become less of a procrastinator together!

Is It Really Important?

The first step is to figure out which bucket your looming tasks fall into.

Bucket 1: Important and Urgent

These are tasks that are vital to your position or business. If you don’t do them you’ll get fired or lose clients. Do them – Now!

Bucket 2: Important, but Not Urgent

These are things that still need to get done, but aren’t necessary to be completed by a super strict deadline. These are the things that should get done, but have a habit of stacking up for me.

Bucket 3: Not Important, but Urgent

These are tasks that you should delegate to someone else (virtual assistant perhaps?) if you can. They are things that take up your precious time and energy and due to their urgency, may waylay you from more important things that really do need your attention.

Bucket 4: Not Important or Urgent

These are things you just feel like you need to do – at some point. If this is the thing that’s been sitting on your desk for the last six months, odds are that you don’t really have to do it. If it won’t really make a difference to your business if you do it or not, then you can either delegate it (see above) or scrap it completely from your list.

Keeping Yourself on Task

A couple of weeks back I mentioned the Pomodoro technique – have you tried it yet? If not, this is the perfect way to tackle tasks from bucket one or two. Since you’re trying to delegate bucket three tasks and deleting those in bucket four, let’s just focus on bucket one and two.

Pick a few to do’s and put the most urgent/important on top. Get that one done first and you’ll go into the rest of your day with a sense of confidence and accomplishment – this is a great way to set yourself up for success for the rest of your work day.

Tackle the Most Annoying One

Here’s a technique I use from time to time. If the task is something that would fall into one of the first two buckets, then it needs to get done – and probably by me. I’m putting it off for a reason, so rather than continue to procrastinate about it, I will make myself do it and get it over with. Often it’s not as bad or as unpleasant as I created it to be in my mind and I almost always have a feeling of satisfaction when it’s over with. Just do it!

Figuring out which buckets your to do list tasks fall into is a great first step. Delegate what you can to someone else or to the trash. Get started by picking a few of the most important/time sensitive tasks first (or go with the most put-off/unpleasant) and set your Pomodoro timer and get to work! You’ll feel better – I promise!

What’s on your desk that you’re currently putting of doing at the moment?

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Photo Credit: Majiscup – The Papercup & Sleeve via Compfight cc

Gina Horkey

Gina Horkey


Gina Horkey is a married, millennial mama from Minnesota. Additionally, she’s the founder of Horkey HandBook and loves helping others find or become a kickass virtual assistant. Gina’s background includes making a living as a professional writer, an online business marketing consultant and a decade of experience in the financial services industry.

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