I spent the last 20 minutes doing one of my absolute least favorite tasks on the planet.
I dread doing the accounting for my small business. Importing, sorting, and characterizing all of my business financial transactions into my accounting software is my idea of hell. I’d rather watch paint dry.
For years, I procrastinated and put this task off for as long as possible.
I would sit in front of my computer late at night, swearing up a storm, frantically trying to get it done just an hour or two before my next business tax filing deadline. Doing so only made a task that I hated so much worse.
I knew there had to be a better way.
Thankfully, I came across an incredibly effective solution:
If I Find Myself Wanting To Procrastinate, I Break The Task Down Into Much Smaller Pieces. 🧩
Like so many others, I tend to want to avoid any tasks involving a large amount of work that I don’t enjoy. Trying to do too much of an unpleasant thing all at once is so incredibly awful that I’ll do anything in my power to avoid getting started.
By breaking unpleasant tasks down into as many tiny steps as humanly possible, it’s easy to commit to taking just the next step. I give myself full permission to stop after taking just that one step. Doing so makes it so much easier to just get started.
With this realization in mind, I broke my business accounting procedures down into 16 tiny steps. I now commit to doing just one of these tiny steps at a time a few weeks before my next tax deadline, giving myself full permission to stop after taking just one step. Each step is so small that it is virtually painless, so I don’t put it off. Sometimes a single step is so painless, that I decide to keep going and do 2 or 3 of them in one sitting.
Before I know it, the task is done well ahead of my next tax deadline, and it didn’t seem like that big of a deal at all.
Breaking my least favorite tasks down into much smaller steps has helped me virtually end procrastination in my life.