How many times do we hear ourselves say “I’ll do this tomorrow”? How many times have we postponed our work or at least a part of it on tomorrow for no good reason? And in how many of such cases do we actually end up finishing the work on this particular ‘tomorrow’? You know you are guilty of being this and you’ll be surprised to know that for most of us this tomorrow never comes.
What can be done today should never be postponed to some other day. Delaying things will intentionally or unintentionally not only hamper the work at hand but will also make you quite a king or queen of procrastination (and trust me, that is a title you are better off without!). More than half of the times you’ll miss the deadline if you keep such an attitude. And the rest of the time you will end up having too much work with deadline dancing on your head and you’ll have to compromise on the quality of work done in order to meet this deadline.
And at this particular point of time you’ll be thinking “I pushed it off too far. I should have done it earlier”. But by then the damage will already have been done. And it cannot be undone now. And finally when the results arrive, we feel “I could have done so, so much better had I started working on it earlier”. We think at this point that this will be a one off occurrence and that we have learned our lesson and we promise to ourselves that we won’t repeat this mistake for sure.
But three days later we find ourselves back on the same track, running our race with time and compromising on the work quality to finish the race in time. Ever thought about why this happens? Why do we end up on the same track every time when in fact we do want to change things up? Well the reason is not that complicated. It is all because of how we have grown up to be the habits that we have picked up and developed along the way. We have started to be okay with just getting things done on time, no matter how we do it. The quality of work done is losing importance unless it is something more than ordinary important stuff and our life depends on a certain projects excellence.
Rest of the times, we are totally okay just winging it. Work takes a back seat and we indulge in other non-yielding activities instead, and we keep on pushing our work further minute by minute until it cannot be delayed any further. What we do not anticipate here is the unexpected work load that pops up all of a sudden giving us a scare for once. At this point our only priority becomes completing all the work in the time assigned, and even this seems like a humongous task, not any simpler than climbing the Mount Everest. And if and when in the end we are able to complete all the work in time, we feel victorious, like we just dodged a bullet, and slowly this habit starts developing within us and we start pushing things off to the last moment. But you should know that what worked once may not always work. Things may not always turn out well in the end, and the sad part is that in this competitive world there is little margin for error as we don’t get much second chances. So it is important that we stop lazing around and start giving work the first priority.
Complete your work as soon as you get it and keep all the other stuff for later. It is really that simple! And the tragedy here is that we know this simple fact of life yet we refuse to discipline ourselves appropriately. This way not only you’ll be able to improve the quality of your work, but you would also feel light hearted and enjoy doing other fun stuff knowing the fact that the work has already been completed. Try it for a month. Finish all your work as soon as possible, give it the first priority, no matter how small or how big it is. Just finish it off and then do whatever you want to; laze around for a while, have some fun around, go for a drive, there is nothing holding you back.
Once you start doing this and you experience better results and a relaxed mind as well, you would automatically start developing this habit. And once you master this art of time management, there would be nothing stopping you from doing everything and anything that you want to, while having some extra time to spare in the end. Life does not necessarily need to be that complicated if we take the effort to keep things simple. Don’t run after it, grab a hold of it and control it the way you want to. Follow these basic rules in life and see how it impacts and improves everything around you. Remember that it is ‘NOW or NEVER’.