If you struggle with anxiety and find yourself procrastinating on important tasks, you’re not alone. Many people experience a strong desire to avoid uncomfortable or challenging tasks when they’re feeling anxious. However, procrastination can make anxiety even worse, leading to a vicious cycle that can be difficult to break.
Here are five tips for stopping procrastination when you’re anxious:
1. Reduce the number of decisions you need to make throughout the day.
Making too many decisions can be overwhelming, especially when you’re feeling anxious. Try to reduce the number of choices you need to make by simplifying your daily routine. For example, you could plan out your meals for the week and make a grocery list, so you don’t have to decide what to eat every day. You could also create a daily schedule and stick to it as much as possible.
2. Focus on something doable.
When you’re feeling anxious, it can be tempting to avoid difficult tasks and focus on easy ones instead. However, this can lead to procrastination. Instead, try to focus on something that is doable and achievable. The “Getting Things Done” method by David Allen suggests breaking down your tasks into smaller, more manageable pieces. For example, instead of trying to tackle a big project all at once, break it down into smaller tasks that you can complete one at a time.
3. Adjust your environment.
Your environment can have a big impact on your ability to focus and get things done. When you’re feeling anxious, it’s important to create a conducive workspace. This might mean finding a quiet place to work, minimizing distractions, and making sure you have everything you need to complete your tasks.
4. The five-minute rule.
If you’re struggling to get started on a task, try the five-minute rule. Set a timer for five minutes and commit to working on the task for that amount of time. Often, once you get started, you’ll find that it’s easier to continue. The five-minute rule can be especially helpful for tasks that you’re feeling anxious about.
5. Seek support.
If you’re struggling with anxiety and procrastination, it can be helpful to seek support. Talk to a trusted friend or family member, or consider reaching out to a mental health professional. They can help you develop strategies for managing your anxiety and breaking the cycle of procrastination.
In conclusion, procrastination can be a frustrating and debilitating problem, especially when you’re feeling anxious. By reducing the number of decisions you need to make, focusing on something doable, adjusting your environment, using the five-minute rule, and seeking support, you can overcome procrastination and get back on track.