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How to Stop Procrastinating

master everyday life Apr 16, 2020

I was listening to a podcast a few months ago, and one of the guests shared a story that made me laugh and feel understood all at once.

She explained that she and her husband had some repairs done on their home and somehow the hot water heater “on” switch was wired to the backyard flood lights.

Not the end of the world, but if they wanted to take a hot shower, they had to turn on the backyard lights.

Now, there was an easy fix to this: a two-minute call to the electrician, asking for a quick visit to get things rewired.

But, as she admitted, she didn’t make this call for six months and spent that time explaining to multiple guests that if they wanted a hot shower they had to head downstairs and turn on the lights before heading back upstairs to the shower.

That’s the part that made me laugh.

How many times have I also put off a two-minute task and ended up dealing with some annoying workaround because that two minute thing felt like TOO MUCH WORK?

(Answer: countless times).

I’ve discovered a secret though and it’s been a game changer in helping me to stop procrastinating and just start doing the thing.

Ready for it?

It’s called the “two-minute rule” and here’s how it works:

As you go throughout your day and recognize a task that needs to be accomplished that will take less than two minutes (call the dentist to schedule an appointment, run your mug from your bedroom to the dishwasher, text a friend, etc.) you just do it immediately.

No thinking about it, no adding it to a list, no saving it for later. You just do it right then.

It sounds so simple it’s almost silly, but I’m devoting an entire blog post to it because it actually works – and I’m all about equipping you with the strategies that make a difference.

My house feels much cleaner when I implement the two-minute rule (because I’m putting things away as I go) and my mental clutter feels significantly lighter (I’m no longer trying to remind myself to remember to schedule a dentist appointment) – and both those things are major wins for me.

If you need a quick win today, I’d encourage you to try the two-minute rule and count up your little victories (no stack of cups in the bedroom!) as you go. I think you’ll be surprised and impressed at your own abilities.

And if you’re facing a task that induces a bit of fear, go read this article on the power of counting down from 5 and then jumping right in. I’m pretty sure you’ll be on fire and ready to go afterwards!

(And don’t forget: I’m here for you! Share your two-minute rule victories with me at [email protected] or over on Instagram @katie.haahr. I’d love to cheer you on!)

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