Re: How to Stop Procrastination For GAMSAT
A survey (by the University of NSW) suggested that those who relish challenge are more likely to live up to 10 years longer than those who spend their lives inhibited by timidity.
Trying to realise our ambitions, even if we don’t always meet them, is preferable to not having the motivation or courage to take the risk. So not making any resolutions because we fear that we’ll break them is having a defeatist attitude, as we allow procrastination to become an insidious habit which stops us from leading more fulfilling lives.
The following offers 10 ways to kick the procrastination habit!
1. Personal values development.
Take the time to find out what you really want in life, what your personal values are. Is being a Doctor the number 1 thing you want in life? Do you want more time, more money, better health, greater self esteem and confidence, more fulfilling relationships? When we procrastinate it’s often because what we are planning to do is not really aligned with what we truly want. We may be scared of our skills (or perceived lack of) or fear ridicule from others.
2. Make health and high energy levels a priority.
Without good health we are less likely to have the energy needed to make positive changes in our lives and it’s easier to procrastinate. So ensure that you have a nourishing diet, sleep well, exercise and meditate. 10 minutes of moderate exercise a day is fine. You want to exercise your heart on a daily basis through exercise. You can even take a daily walk to break up your study. Also I recommend daily meditation to reduce stress and anxiety. Just type in google ‘short guided meditation’ – you will find plenty of short guided meditations that are approximately 10 minutes long.
3. Visualise your life without procrastination.
See and feel the benefits in your life if you didn’t procrastinate. What could you do and achieve? Begin to act as if you’re not a procrastinator. Write down, draw, and imagine your life as a film. Use affirmations to help you! I go over these in my previous post.
I outline meditation and affirmation techniques in my previous post – ==> https://www.acegamsat.com/gamsat-secret/
4. Banish the Gremlin.
That little voice which runs on autopilot in your head – that dismisses any idea that you might have. It says things like “I cant be bother” “I’m not in the mood” “I can’t do this”. Stop running on autopilot, and replace the “should’s” “oughts” “have tos” with “want to” “desire”. You have a choice. Please acknowledge your choices and banish the Gremlin. Again, using affirmations can help you replace the Gremlin with more positive alternatives.
5. Over commitment.
Saying “yes” to everything – often leaves you feeling tired and without the energy to focus on what is most important to you. A really great book called ‘The One Thing’ by Gary Keller, sheds light on the importance of focusing on the one thing that will bring you the greatest results in life. So, don’t be a ‘yes man’ and focus on what matters the most. It will enhance your focus and motivation.
6. Set personal and professional goals.
It’s hard to motivate yourself when you don’t have a good idea of what you want to accomplish. So when setting goals think about what you want to achieve in the short term and long term. Techniques for doing so include the SMART strategy. S = specific M = measurable A= Action R = Realistic T = Time based. Use goal setting software to help you in goal planning and setting.
7. Prioritise Your Goals.
Develop a plan or schedule to help you reach your goals. In doing so you will begin to identify whether some elements need to be included or enhanced or dropped completely. Also remember to be flexible, revisit your goals regularly and modify or drop if appropriate. Just because a goal is written down doesn’t mean that it is set in stone! I suggest reviewing your goals at least once per month. You should really invest in a white board and write your goals on there. Here you will be able to read them everyday!
8. Divide and conquer.
Once you’ve prioritised your goals, divide them into smaller chunks. Sometimes we procrastinate because a project seems really large that the scale of it overwhelms us and puts us into a temporary form of paralysis – you don’t know where to start, so you don’t start at all! Approach each project – especially large ones – on a step by step basis.
9. Reward yourself.
Once you start to complete tasks, reward yourself by giving yourself something that you want. So instead of seeing a film before you complete a task, see it afterwards and make it a reward for you. When I was preparing for the GAMSAT, I would reward myself with watching a movie at the end of the week. This was only if I truly believed I had a productive week of GAMSAT study.
10. Just get started.
No excuses. Don’t wait until you’re “in the mood”. The mood never comes! It is a clever camouflage and a delaying tactic. What you resist persists! Start with what is easiest, so that you experience immediate success, which will give you the fuel and motivation to upgrade and take on larger projects. I know how easy it can be to procrastinate essay writing for the GAMSAT. So now, turn to an ACER paper, turn to section 2, set a timer, and start writing an essay under timed conditions. Start now! It doesn’t matter if it is not your best essay, just do your best. Then type your essay up and find someone to provide feedback.
Do any of the above and you’ll be well on your way to Kicking the Procrastination Habit and achieving greater productivity especially toward your GAMSAT Preparation. And if you’re procrastinating over doing any of the above… then remember that life is the biggest deadline of all!