Are you the kind of person who struggles with following through with things? Do you procrastinate, make excuses, and even lie to yourself just so you don’t have to do that one pesky chore?
You’re not the only one.
I struggle with that too. In fact, a lot of my friends struggle with doing things on time and getting them done well.
So, since it seems that people in general struggle with the daily task of getting things done, I thought I would write five of the ways I have used to try and become a more productive person.
1. Seek Accountability
I find when I am accountable to someone or something, I am a lot more productive and more inclined to do the task well.
One way to become accountable is to tell someone what you need to do, and when you need it to be done by. It’s as simple as asking a friend to shoot you a text at 3 p.m. asking if you fed the cat. I mean let’s be real, the last thing you want is to look like someone who doesn’t feed their cat.
2. Make a List
This one is a huge help, and my go-to option. There is just something so helpful about writing down exactly what you need to do.
Lists create a driving force, a motivation. Because what is better than going to bed and seeing that your list is completely checked off? It gives a sense of accomplishment and gratification.
3. Create a Consequence
Now let’s be honest, no one likes bad consequences, but they can really help us get things done. It works like making a list. It’s a driving force.
One thing I did was make a firm rule for myself that I could not use electronics until I had completed at least three things on my list.
Now this one takes some self-discipline because you have to tell yourself that you won’t cheat. When you say, “oh, just this once,” you know it will not be “just this once,” because doing it “just this once” leads to “just one more time,” until you don’t even follow through with your consequence anymore.
4. Do it Right Away
“So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin.” – James 4:17
This tactic is great for keeping messes under control.
When you think of something you need to do, immediately go do it. Don’t put it off, don’t procrastinate and say, “eh, well I could do it tomorrow.”
No, just get up and do it!
If you spill your cat’s food while feeding her and think, “well, maybe she will eat it up off the floor. If not, I’ll just clean it up later,” you’re going to get ants because you will most likely forget about it. Instead, clean it up right then.
5. Get a Friend to Do it with You!
We all know that involving our friends really does make us more productive. So, offer to do the same for them in return.
What I mean is, choose one of the options above and ask a friend to do it with you. This is a great way to motivate, encourage, and lift each other up in the process.
And of course, when you have a best bud to talk about how well you are both accomplishing your goals, it makes it way more fun! On the flipside, when one of you struggles to meet your goals, the other can offer encouragement and prayer support.
Do it for God
When you think about doing something for the Creator of the universe, it makes the task feel much more important. When you place great importance on something, it makes that task seem worth doing. And since we are to do everything as unto God, that gives everything we do great import.
To use the example of feeding your cat, wouldn’t you be more inclined to feed her if you say to yourself:
“At 3 p.m. today, I have to feed my cat. The Creator of the universe made that cat and placed her in my care, so I should be a good steward of God’s creation and feed her.”
This is the most important reason to do something, because if you don’t do it for God, then why do it at all?When you think about doing a task, do it for the Creator of the universe. There is no more important reason to do something, because if you don’t do it for God, then why do it at all? Click To Tweet
Remember This When Doing Annoying Tasks
You will not always be thanked or acknowledged.
Just because you empty the dishwasher without being asked, doesn’t mean your mom is going to thank you. More than likely, she will notice, but not say anything.
Just because you feed your sister’s dog, doesn’t mean she is going to give you a hug and thank-you-to-death.
It feels good to be praised, and sometimes when you don’t get the amount of praise you expect, you get angry. That is when the negative thoughts come in.
“Why did I even bother feeding her dumb dog? It chases my poor cat.”
“I could have curled half of my hair by now, why did I even bother emptying the dishwasher?”
But you cannot let those thoughts find a home in your mind when they come, because they cause bitterness and discontentment.
Instead, remember that whatever you do, God is the real reason you should do it. Let it all be an act of worship to Him. Remember that the only One you need to acknowledge your work is God, and that He sees everything you do and smiles at your good works.
I will leave you with this verse. I hope it motivates you as much as it did me.
“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men.” – Colossians 3:23