5 ideas for dealing with deadlines blog header

This week I’m working on some serious productivity planning, and I wanted to address a couple of things that I know I personally need to work on: meeting deadlines and beefing up my discipline.

Deadlines don’t have to be a problem unless you’re a procrastinator or lack the self-discipline to get stuff done. Kind of the same thing when you think about it – and I know for myself that I procrastinate until the absolute last minute, and then I have remarkable self-disclipine to sit at the computer until the project gets done. But that’s a really stressful way to run your business, and you end up like I have on ocassion – so tired and worn down I slept almost the whole day away!

So in order to improve, I went searching for ideas and here is what I found…

5 ideas for dealing with deadlines and discipline:

Idea #1 – Change Your Self-Talk

Changing your self-talk from “I should do this” to “I must do this” is a good start and changing the way you work. Should implies you have a choice, but if you’re on a deadline there is really no choice but to get the work done.

Idea #2 – Remove Temptations and Distractions

My biggest procrastination distraction is the Food Channel. I like to keep it on in the background, and it’s way to easy to stop working and watch an episode or maybe two of something before getting back to work. The obvious solution there is for me to cancel the cable tv… and yes, I’m seriously thinking about it.

Idea #3 – Build in Down Time and Rewards

Forgive yourself, take days off and build a healthy reward system for your goals and to-do lists. Good results don’t happen consistently if you are constantly running on empty or jumping from deadline to deadline with no opportunity to reward yourself and be proud of your accomplishments. Golf, anyone?

 Idea #4 – There Should Be Consequences

If you’re the one who sets the deadlines, what happens if you don’t meet them? If achieving your goal is the end result, the easy consequence is that you don’t get what you want or that it takes longer to get it. I don’t necessarily believe in punishments as consequences – my idea is to keep a poster of your goals somewhere that you can see it and remind yourself every day that the consequence of not working is that you don’t get the things you want!

Idea #5 – Become more Self-aware and Reflective

Keeping a journal can be really helpful here. Record things like your “must do’s” for the day, whether you got them done or not, and why not. Pay attention to your own strengths and weaknesses – is it time to outsource the things you keep putting off? And reflect at the end of each day on what went right, what went wrong, and what can you do tomorrow to get better?

Building up your self-discipline to meet deadlines isn’t a one-day, flip the switch process. But if you keep these ideas in mind the next time you’re tempted to blow off work for another episode of reality tv, you’ll get there!  

About the Author

Ruth is self-styled creative soulpreneur who loves that she gets to play with words and pictures for a living. She started her first email newsletter in 1997 and has never looked back. Between creating printables and courses, she publishes a daily newsletter, loves to golf and walk on the beach and is teaching herself how to do hand-lettering and doodle art.

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