Procastination is the act or habit of procrastinating, or putting off or delaying, especially something requiring immediate attention. A large percentage of people are battling with this habit.
I have been struggling with delaying, avoiding, and procrastinating on issues that matter to me. Recently, I’ve been following a simple rule i learnt from James Clear that is helping me crush procrastination and making it easier for me to stick to good habits at the same time. I would like to share this with you so that you can try it out and see how it works for you.
The good news is that its a very simple strategy, nothing technical.
Here’s what you need to know…
How to Stop Procrastinating With the “5–Minute Rule”
He calls this little strategy the “5–Minute Rule” and the goal is to make it easier for you to get started on the things you should be doing.
Did you know…
Most of those tasks that you procrastinate on are really not difficult to do. You have the talent and skills to accomplish them but you just avoid starting them for one reason or another.
This 5–Minute Rule overcomes procrastination and laziness by making it so easy to start taking action that you can’t say no.
There are two parts to the 5–Minute Rule…
Part 1 — If it takes less than five minutes, then do it now.
It is very surprising how many things we put off that we could get done in five minutes or less. For example, washing your dishes immediately after eating, taking out the trash, cleaning up clutter, sending that email or making that call, and so on.
Think about that task briefly and ask yourself how long it will possibly take to do it, If a task takes less than five minutes to complete, then follow the rule and do it right now.
This particular rule is something that i have built into my consciousness and i have found myself completing more tasks than usual.
Part 2 — When you start a new habit, it should take less than five minutes to do.
Can all of your goals be accomplished in less than five minutes? Obviously not.
But, every goal can be started in 5 minutes or less. And that’s the purpose behind this little rule.
It might sound like this strategy is too basic for your big life goals. It works for any goal because of what James calls the physics of real life.
The Physics of Real Life
As Sir Isaac Newton taught us a long time ago, objects at rest tend to stay at rest and objects in motion tend to stay in motion. This is just as true for humans as it is for falling apples.
The 5–Minute Rule works for big goals as well as small goals because of the inertia of life. Once you start doing something, it’s easier to continue doing it. I love the 5–Minute Rule because it embraces the idea that all sorts of good things happen once you get started.
Want to become a better writer? Just write one sentence (5–Minute Rule), and you’ll often find yourself writing for an hour. I know this because once i kick start writing, i am unstoppable.
Want to eat healthier? Just eat one piece of fruit (5–Minute Rule), and you will often find yourself inspired to make a healthy smoothie as well.
Want to make reading a habit? Just read the first page of a new book (5–Minute Rule), and before you know it, the first three chapters have flown by.
The most important part of any new habit is getting started — not just the first time, but each time. It’s not about performance, it’s about consistently taking action. In many ways, getting started is more important than succeeding. This is especially true in the beginning because there will be plenty of time to improve your performance later on. Anything worth doing, is worth doing badly at first so don’t worry about perfection.
The 5–Minute Rule isn’t about the results you achieve, but rather about the process of actually doing the work. It works really well for people who believe that the system is more important than the goal. The focus is on taking action and letting things flow from there.
Try It Now
I can’t guarantee whether or not the 5–Minute Rule will work for you. But, I can guarantee that it will never work if you never try it.
The problem with most posts you read, podcasts you listen to, or videos you watch is that you consume the information but never put it into practice.
Let this post be different. I want you to actually use this information, right now.
What’s something you can do that will take you less than five minutes? Do it right now.
Anyone can spare the next 300 seconds. Use this time to get one thing done. Go!
Don’t forget to comment when you start getting results.