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2 mins

How To Stop Procrastinating By Asking Yourself A Simple Question

How can you successfully hack your habits and alter your mindset to achieve real, measurable, consistent change? Read on to find out.
by Ben Hughes | Jan 27 2017

Change is hard. We all have bad habits we want to break and good habits we want to build. The question is: how do we enact real change that will have a positive impact on our lives?

make positive changes in your life

In their book Switch, Chip and Dan Heath reveal that many of us fail to build good habits due to an excess of choice. The more options we have, the harder it is to decide what to do next. This means that we are inclined to spend lots of time researching and preparing a healthy habit, but then we fail to act.

From the outside, it looks like resistance to change but the reality is that, with so many possibilities, we’re not sure where to start.

So what do we need to ask? The ultimate trick to healthy habit change is to ask yourself what exact steps do you need to take in order for change to take place?

For example, if you want to read more, write down very clear actionable steps that will help you get there; e.g. identify when in your day you want to make time for reading and find a tool to help you to incorporate reading into your life.

One of the top tools to help you read more is the Blinkist app. With the thousands of books being published each week, it is difficult to know where to start. Luckily, there’s an app for that.

With Blinkist, you can read 4 books in one day! The Blinkist app gives you key ideas from over 2000 nonfiction books that you can read or listen to in 15 minutes or less. This means you can listen and learn on-the-go and discover a whole world of ideas. Sign up for a 3-day free trial and read books like never before!

Small changes can bring big benefits. Download the Blinkist app today to start reading more and gaining valuable insights (like the one above) that can have a massive positive effect on your life.

Change is hard. Today, you may resolve to procrastinate less at work, only to find yourself browsing Facebook tomorrow, when you should be working on your big presentation.

Luckily, there are tools to make change easier.

make positive changes in your life

One of the challenges we face is that our brains are extraordinarily adept at spotting all possible obstacles to change. So we instantly think things like, “I’ll never stop procrastinating when Facebook is just a click away.”

This can be disheartening.

To overcome this tendency, you need to find and focus on the bright spots: specific situations where you’ve already succeeded in making a positive change. For example:

If you want to stop procrastinating at work, try to identify days when you didn’t procrastinate much at all. What was special about those days?

You might realize that you had a relaxed morning, perhaps meditating a bit before work, which resulted in a calm focus for the whole day.

This was just one of many valuable takeaways from Chip and Dan Heath’s book Switch.

These authors also believed that the first step to changing your behavior, is to acknowledge your flaws.

You have two sides, an analytical one, and an emotional one. The former might make a decision to stop procrastinating, eat healthier, or exercise more, but the latter will succumb to guilty pleasures and make you fail these resolutions.

In fact, changing your behavior is like riding an elephant – you know where you want to go, but you need to convince the elephant to go there too.

How do you control your inner elephant? It’s not rocket science, just choose a direction, give your elephant some treats, and stick to an easy path. To find out what this means in practical terms, you can read the notes from this book in the Blinkist app.

With Blinkist, you can read 4 books in one day! The Blinkist app gives you key ideas from over 2000 nonfiction books that you can read or listen to in 15 minutes or less. This means you can listen and learn on-the-go and discover a whole worlds of ideas. Sign up for a 3-day free trial and read books like never before!

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