Stop Procrastinating With These 3 Brain Hacks

27 September, 2014
Stop Procrastinating With These 3 Brain Hacks - Focus Plus Shot

We all have those moments where we lose our motivation to complete important tasks. Why is that? Procrastination is one of the most common struggles of them all and sometimes you need to bite the bullet if you ever want to make it happen. Your homework assignment is not going to do itself and neither will your laundry. It’s no secret that getting work done can be a tough task, but luckily there are a few tricks and tips to motivate yourself and stop procrastinating that can be easily incorporated into your daily routine.


The “1-2-3 Go!” Rule

This is something that I saw on reddit a while ago and have used ever since. The rule is simple: whenever you’re procrastinating, just say to yourself, “1-2-3 Go!” and then get started on whatever it is you’ve been putting off. While this trick might seem cheesy or silly at first, once you start to use it, it becomes a fun challenge to keep using it and to never break the rule. It can be helpful to start off using this rule with minor things and to build your way up to more significant things. This way you will slowly train yourself to take action when you are being reluctant, and it will become easier and easier each time. Your “flight” instincts will slowly be replaced with “fight” instincts, and your life will surely improve.

Stop Procrastinating With These 3 Brain Hacks - Focus Plus Shot

Procrastinating on sending an important email? “1-2-3 Go!”

Considering sprinting the last 20 seconds of your jog? “1-2-3 Go!”

Want to approach that cute guy or girl you’ve had your eye on? “1-2-3 Go!”

3 Easy Brain Hacks to Increase Productivity - Nootelligence Blog

After a couple days using this trick, your life will probably start to feel like that of Jim Carey’s character in the movie “Yes Man.” If you’ve seen the movie, you know how much better his life became once he started saying, “Yes” to every opportunity. Now here’s your opportunity! 1-2-3 Go!

Complete the most difficult and important tasks first

I personally spend a good deal of time procrastinating on my more difficult tasks and assignments by working on easier things and pretending that whatever I am doing is much more important than what I actually need to be doing.  Many people are affected from procrastinating daily and twenty percent of people consider themselves chronic procrastinators.  If you’ve ever found yourself doing laundry and ironing all of your shirts the day before finals, then you too have fallen victim to your own anti-productive deception. A good way to avoid this habit is to consciously approach the tasks that are the most difficult, important, and time-consuming.

Stop Procrastinating With These 3 Brain Hacks - Focus Plus Shot

You may want to make a list of all the things you need to get done. Then, for each task, make note of the following: how long you think it will take, how hard it is going to be, and when it needs to be completed by. Using these three variables and some reasonable judgment, determine an order of importance, leaving the quickest, easiest tasks at the end. Then start from the top.

3 Easy Brain Hacks to Increase Productivity - Nootelligence BlogBy using this strategy, each time you complete a task, you will be happy knowing that it will only get easier. You will probably start to realize that the tasks you are dreading the most aren’t really all that bad, and that it was really just the prolonged anticipation that made it seem so unappealing in the first place. Use this strategy and you will become a more productive person immediately!



Write down rules for yourself in a place that you will see


The last two tips are great for the things you need to accomplish quickly. Some tasks and goals cannot be so quickly accomplished, like trying to form a new habit or break an old one, they may not be as appropriate. For things that require extended, maybe daily efforts, or for things that involve resisting temptation, I find it helpful to write down a rule or a set of rules somewhere, and to leave it in a place that you will see it. I have trouble resisting the temptation of playing guitar during the work day, so I have written on an index card, “Do not play before 6pm.” Every morning I stick the note card through the strings of the guitar so that it is in plain view, and so that I couldn’t even play it without consciously removing the note card.

Stop Procrastinating With These 3 Brain Hacks - Focus Plus Shot

While it might seem silly or unlikely to work, it has truly worked wonders for me. By writing down rules or guidelines that will help me accomplish my goals, I am putting them into a physical form for the first time and giving them substance and existence outside of my own mind. Doing this somehow validates them and gives them some sort of authority over me that they did not have before they were written down. I find that for some reason, breaking a rule that was written down actually feels a lot worse than breaking a rule that was only ever thought about. If you don’t believe me, try it out yourself and see what happens.

Stop Procrastinating With These 3 Brain Hacks - Focus Plus Shot

Now that I’ve told you about these three little tricks that I use, it’s your turn to try them out. Let us know about your experiences with them if you do start to use them. We are always happy to hear from our readers! Okay… 1-2-3- Go!!!

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