Transcript – 13 Tips to Beat Procrastination and Get Things Done – BioTrust Radio #48
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Transcript – 13 Tips to Beat Procrastination
Shawn: Hey BioTrust Radio fans, we are back with another episode. It is Shawn Wells, and I’m here with my co-host, Tim Skwiat.
Tim: Greetings, friends!
Shawn: We’re going to do at the start of each episode, a review of our podcast from, typically iTunes, but we appreciate you listening to iTunes Google Play, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, and now Spotify that we’re on. And certainly, if you listen on our website, you can go to BioTrustRadio.com. You can listen to it there, you can look at the transcripts. We have everything transcribed. We have all the links, cool stuff to download. All that there. Check that out. That’s the best way, I think. But we appreciate you listening on any place that you’re listening, and your support. So, to acknowledge that support, we want to give you a free product when you give us a review and we read it on this show. And also, we will give you a free product if you go to BioTrust.com/VIP. You join the VIP group and you give us a question and we read that question on the podcast, and we will give you a free product as well. So, we appreciate your support and we will acknowledge that support. So, Tim?
Tim: Yes. Just one other thing I was going to mention. On the blog, with those blog posts for each episode, we also have any kind of resources that we mentioned on the show, they’re linked to that. And also relevant articles or other podcasts that we’ve done on those topics, so you can go down a pretty dirty rabbit hole.
Shawn: That’s awesome.
Tim: Yeah, it’s good stuff. So, again, like Shawn said leaving reviews, especially on iTunes, it really helps us out. It gets the word out there and allows us to get in more people’s ears. So, we want to acknowledge you guys that are leaving those reviews. And today’s review is a five-star review from Amy=Me. And Amy says, “Great podcast.” I just want to clarify this is not my wife Amy. So, we’re not getting free products in the house. Amy=Me says, “I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know Shawn Wells through social media and love all the work he’s produced. I’m so glad to hear him on a podcast. And Tim seems like a wealth of knowledge as well. [Shawn and Tim laugh] I hope—
Shawn: [laughs] Okay.
Tim: “I hope more episodes come soon. These guys are smart and helpful when it comes to health and wellness. I also really enjoy my BioTrust protein and probiotics. Amazing quality.” Amy, thank you so much. I inflected that just to kind of add some humor there, but really appreciate you taking the time to leave that review. Please email me at [email protected] and I will send you BioTrust protein, probiotics, or whatever you want, I’ll send you a free product. Thanks, Amy.
Shawn: Yeah, thank you, Amy.
Tim: And now we’re going to move into what I’m going to call the keto lightening round of questions.
Tim: For our keto expert, Shawn Wells. I’ve got two questions here from our VIP Facebook members. And we’ll notify these folks and we’ll make sure they get a free products as well. So, the first one comes from Cheri Mattox McClanahan. And Cheri says, “Okay, Shawn, since you and your wife are keto experts, tell me how much protein and how much fat I should be taking in. I’m sticking to 20 or fewer carbs too, on a 1,200 calorie diet. I’m staying under that though.”
Shawn: Ah, wow.
Shawn: I don’t know what, Cheri, is it?
Shawn: Cheri, I don’t know your size, but 1,200 sounds low. Usually a diet, you might go 200 on the conservative and 500 on a—
Tim: On a deficit, you’re talking about?
Shawn: Yeah. Yeah, on a more extreme end, 200 is maintainable much longer-term; 500 would be harsh, but there’s a good chance 1,200, that that could be like 800 calories underneath, in terms of caloric deficit, like you said, what would be maintenance. But, I don’t know. You could be 90 pounds and 5 foot tall. I don’t know, but I’m a little worried about that number.
Tim: You can’t go much lower.
Shawn: Right. I don’t know if I believe in metabolic damage, per se. That that term gets thrown around, but you certainly could be putting yourself in a situation where you’re just punishing your metabolism and your psyche. It just gets difficult. And if you get into that situation, mentally, it can become such a grind that you have a weakened immune state, you can’t deal with stress as well, you aren’t sleeping as well, you aren’t exercising as well, you aren’t thinking as well. And you may be resistant to ever diet again. You may get the yo-yo effect, where you put on weight more easily.
Your body thinks you’re starving if you’re in that much of a deficit and you maintain it for a long time. So, I would be very careful there. That just concerns me. I would be much happier to hear a number like 1,600, 1,800. And from there, yes, 20 grams of carbohydrate; that’s fine. And I just do percentages, so I’m not going to do the math. I do calories percentage with protein being 20% on keto; and fat being around 70‑75%; and usually carbs is around 5%, most of that coming from fiber. Now you can go a little higher in protein, keeping carbs low, and you might decrease your fat a little bit as a result. So, you just swap protein with that.
If you were a bodybuilder and you had a lot of lean body mass, then maybe you could get up to 25%. Some maybe go as high as 30% on heavy lifting days. But I think for women, typically, because they have less lean body mass, I think 20% is a good number. They might say, “Well, why can’t I eat more protein?” Protein is gluconeogenic, meaning it can convert into glucose and can be counterproductive to a ketogenic diet. When you have more lean body mass, like a muscular male athlete might have, then you have more leeway to deal with that kind of glucose and dispose of it quickly so that it doesn’t impair ketosis. And that’s just what I’ve seen, that there’s more carbohydrate tolerance, and therefore more gluconeogenic protein-based tolerance, when you have more lean body mass.
So, for women, I just don’t typically think they need to get above 20%, or else it can start to be counterproductive. So, that means 20% protein, 5% carbohydrate (mostly fiber), and then that leaves 75% as fat.
Tim: My number is based on that 1,200 calorie. It would be about a 100 grams of fat, 60 grams of protein, based on a 1,200 calorie diet, in this instance.
Shawn: If I was going to do 1,200 calories, it would not be more than a couple weeks.
Shawn: That’s just too low.
Shawn: I think. I don’t know this person exactly, so.
Tim: I was just going to say, we don’t really know all the details, and maybe there’s some calorie cycling in there.
Tim: Because we’ve talked before. It’s energy deficit over time, not just one day.
Tim: And so, you could do 1,200 in one day and 2,000 another day, and still get there, and be on the average 1,600. But I think that’s a really good response. And maybe there’s a specific caloric restriction anti-aging protocol here. Because with caloric restriction protocols, people are usually eating about 60% of maintenance, right? Something like that.
Shawn: Yeah, yeah.
Tim: I guess that depends on the goal, too, but if this is a long-term weight management type of approach, that seems pretty severe. I agree.
Shawn: Okay. So, next question.
Tim: One more quick question. This one’s from Susie Spears, and I think this one’s a little bit more straightforward.
Tim: Susie asks, “When doing keto, is it total or net carbs?”
Shawn: That’s a great question. I believe that for the first at least 90 days, preferably six months, that you should go strict keto and don’t mess with net carbs. Net carbs can undo your diet. You can seek out loopholes. And you don’t know how net carbs are affecting you. When we say net carbs, we mean we’re subtracting out fibers and we’re subtracting out sugar alcohols. And each of the sugar alcohols—polydextrose, glycerol/glycerin, maltitol, lactitol, sorbitol, erythritol—they all affect people differently. Some get GI distress from them, some get high glycemic spike from them. It just depends.
So, I like to get all the adaptations from a true ketogenic diet and not undermine yourself with all this stuff, and look at net carbs. And I like to just add that in. Once you’ve made the adaptations, not only physiologically, but mentally, you know what ketogenic state is. You know what it feels like. You know, “Okay, I’m in ketosis. This is what deep ketosis feels like. This is what borderline ketosis feels like. Now I can add in these other things that might kick me out.” So I like straight ketosis, 90 days to 6 months, and then start looking at net carbs.
And again, with fibers, it’s similar now to almost like what I was just talking about with sugar alcohols, where fibers can be these short chain fibers. You’ve got FOS from inulin, which is fructooligosaccharides. You have IMO, which is in some of these bars, which is isomaltooligosaccharide. And even though they’re listed as “prebiotic fibers,” and all this stuff, they can be 70% sugar. And so, how that affects you? That can vary quite a bit. So, I would say, that’s my answer. Three months to 6 months straight ketogenic, no net carbs. And then at that point you can start experimenting with net carbs.
Tim: Awesome answer. And you talked about that a lot more too, Shawn, I think it was in Episode 22. So, we’ll link to that one in the show notes. But that’s a super response, and I think now we can kind of dive into our main topic of the day. I think one that I wouldn’t say strikes everybody, but I think a lot of people affected by this is procrastination. And we’re going to talk about how to beat procrastination.
Shawn: I was going to say, we’ve been putting off this topic for a while now.
Tim: Oh my goodness.
Tim: Oh my goodness.
Shawn: [laughs] It’s good that we finally get to it. [laughs]
Tim: Just put it on the back shelf.
Shawn: [laughs] So, yes, we have two articles that we’ll be referring to to help us beat procrastination. And both will be linked in our show notes at BioTrustRadio.com. And one is called, Getting to Know How to Beat the Procrastination Habit, by J.D. Roth. And another one is called, Overcoming Procrastination, from Chalene.
Tim: Chalene Johnson.
Shawn: Chalene Johnson. So, let’s get into this. So, “Do it now. This is blindingly obvious, I know, but many people lose sight of this fundamental skill. It’s not that we don’t know that we should do things now, it’s that we’ve forgotten how. Here are some techniques I’ve been trying to force myself to get to now.” And this is the J.D. Roth list. First tip on the list to beat procrastination: “Set aside blocks of time to do things.”
Tim: Yeah, Tom Bilyeu, I think you’ve mentioned his name before.
Tim: He’s the founder of Quest Nutrition. He’s really awesome. He’s got a YouTube channel, I think.
Shawn: Yeah, yeah.
Tim: And maybe a podcast, as well. But I heard him one time talk about—you’re not always going to want to do it, but you just have to commit to it. Like just put yourself in the room. Grind is the word that some people use. And that’s fine if you want to use that word, but you just commit to it. You may not feel like it, but just get started. Get somewhere.
And I also heard on Max Lugavere’s podcast, Craig Clemens is marketing expert. And Craig was talking about some different tactics that he uses. He literally sets a timer on his phone for 33 minutes, and it turns everything off. So, 33 minutes turns off email, turns off the phone, and he’ll work on whatever marketing copy he’s writing or whatever project he’s working on. And then when 33 minutes goes off, he sets a 6‑minute timer to do something physically active. So, he builds in these 33 minute blocks, basically, to do work like J.D.’s talking about here. Like you set aside time to do these things.
Now, that’s the first part to beat procrastination, to schedule that time. And then you have to have a very clear idea of what you want to accomplish during that time; whether it’s writing, whether it’s working on a project. Maybe you schedule in your exercise. Whatever you’re procrastinating on. But just schedule that time. Schedule it just like you would any other appointment for yourself.
Shawn: Yeah, I agree. And even if you’re at work and you have Outlook, I think it’s important that you block off these times for yourself when you need, like you were saying, whether it’s meditation, self-discovery, whether it’s just focusing in on writing or whatever, that you block that off on your calendar so people aren’t bothering you.
Shawn: That they see that you’re preoccupied with legitimate work that has importance and that you yourself look at your calendar and say, “I need to set aside this time. No emails, no distractions, no playing around. This is the time that I meditate. This is the time that I focus on my writing. This is the time that I clean up my office. This is the time that I go take a walk.” You can schedule all these things. So, put them on your Outlook calendar or your Google Calendar or whatever it is you use, and do that.
Also, we’ve talked about blocks of time. What’s the term that we’ve talked about? Not the bundling, but what is it?
Shawn: Batching, yes, exactly. With, like, Tim Ferriss that he talks about like in The 4-Hour Workweek. And I think that’s important that you can block things together. That makes sense. So, you set aside a certain time of the day to do all your phone calls. And Tim Ferriss does all his phone calls in the afternoon while he’s walking.
Shawn: So, combining those two, because the walking makes him more alert, makes him obviously get exercise. But also just focus in and have mental clarity for his phone conversations and not be distracted with emails and things popping up.
Shawn: The office to-do. That you’re out and you’re taking a relaxing walk and you can focus on the conversation at hand.
Shawn: And I think it’s important to do that batching for efficiency’s sake. So, it says, “Set aside blocks of time to do things,” but I think blocking things together, batching things together during these blocks is important, too.
Shawn: So, the next tip to beat procrastination. “If it comes to mind, then do it. Often I’ll be sitting on the back porch reading a book and it will occur to me that some chore needs to be done. Pruning the laurel hedge, for example. I need to write that down so I can remember it, I tell myself. Wrong. [Tim chuckles] What usually happens is that I forget to write it down, and even if I do, I just look at the list and procrastinate for weeks on end.” I mean, it’s a good step that you at least wrote it down, but I agree, that you can be procrastinating. But it says, “The best move is actually to do the chore when you think of it, assuming of course that I have the time at that moment, which I usually do.” And there’s something to be said for just jumping on it, right?
Tim: Yeah. No, I totally agree. I do think there’s probably instances where something comes to mind and you do need to make a note of it. I can’t tell you how many times I forgot.
Tim: Yeah, exactly. But in our house, we have kind of a rule-of-thumb, and it’s just like “don’t put off for tomorrow what you can do today.” And that’s another way to beat procrastination.
Tim: Especially if it is low-hanging fruit, just grab and it get it done so it’s not sitting there waiting for you for tomorrow. And sometimes there’s those things that you can do. Other times you don’t want to get started on something that you can’t finish, so it makes sense. But I’m totally onboard with that.
Shawn: Well, I think, here’s the thing. Once you head down this path, you can become better and better at making time at a different time writing something down and getting to it then. But probably the place to start to condition yourself is when something comes up, to just do it.
Shawn: Otherwise, you’ll procrastinate. So, I agree that maybe in time you can get better at this and you can say, “Look, I’m going to put this on my list. I’ll get to it tomorrow, but not today.” And maybe you’re conditioned well enough that you actually do that. But it’s important that you start somewhere, and when things come up you just jump on them.
Shawn: Everyone wants to have someone that’s proactive around them. And when you ask for help, that they’re like, “Yeah, let’s do that. Let’s do that right now.” How much do you love that person?
Shawn: We all want that person in our lives. Let’s be that person. Next tip to beat procrastination: “Use a timer to bring you back to reality.”
Tim: Yeah. So, I was kind of talking about that with the Craig Clemens thing and J.D., right said he sets a timer for 48 minutes. He talks about it in a slightly different way. He’s talking about it less in terms of the way that I did, to like block off that time. But he’s talking about, he says, “I set the timer for 48 minutes. When it goes off, it’s serves as an instant reality check, am I doing what I’m supposed to be doing?” So, for him, it’s more of kind of an alarm clock, the reality check type of thing, awareness tool. Am I doing what I’m supposed to be doing?
So, you can use that timer for multiple reasons. One, to block your time, and two, to make sure you’re accomplishing what you set out to during that block of time. And I think you have to find the sweet spot of time for yourself. Sometimes, and maybe it’s contingent on the project that you have, but I guess that’s my point. When you set that timer, you have to have a very clear goal of what you want to accomplish during that time period. It’s got to be realistic, but it’s also got to be challenging. Because what I’ve noticed is that when I set that timer for 33 minutes, there’s a sense of urgency.
Tim: And it’s just long enough that I feel okay turning everything off and going at it. Sometimes it’s not long enough, though, to get where I want to be during a specific time block. So, I think you have to find out that sweet spot of what works for you, but also have very clear, realistic expectations of what you want to accomplish. If you’re a writer, do you want to write 500 words during that time period? If you’re a researcher, are doing this? If you’re working on a project, do you want to have so many slides done? If you’re working on a report, do you want to get to a certain point, or do you want to have it completed? Just be realistic with those expectations and challenge yourself, too, so that you have that little bit of sense of urgency.
It reminds me when I used to play soccer in high school. It was like you have this 90‑minute game, right? And it’s just like kind of, not lollygagging, but there’s this realization that there’s a lot of time. And then you get to the last two minutes of a half or at the end of the game, and it’s just like balls to the wall—for a lack of a better term. Just this sense of urgency is very inspiring and that time has that effect on us, I think.
Shawn: Nothing motivates like the last minute.
Shawn: I think is the famous quote. Next tip to beat procrastination: “Do not multitask.”
Tim: Enough said. [chuckles]
Shawn: We have talked about this over and over, that multitasking, for about 99% of the population, unless you’re pretty much a genius. And most people, while they’re intelligent at different things, are not at the state where they can do this. Some people say, “Well, females can do this,” and whatever. It’s not gender-based. This multitasking is a myth. We don’t do things as well. Productivity suffers when we try and do multiple things at once. You lack the ability to filter when you pick up another task.
So, if there’s things going on around you, now you’re focusing on all those various things coming in around you and you can’t filter them anymore. You basically do have the ability to kind of multitask because your brain’s always—when you’re focused on one thing, your brain is filtering out what’s important and what’s not important, that’s going on around you. But if you try and pick up a second task, your brain stops having the ability to do that, and you’re taking in everything.
Shawn: So, multitasking is a myth. Multitasking is a great lie. And if you think you can play on your phone and have the TV on and be working on that paper and take a phone call, and all that stuff, you can’t. For one, you can’t do that all at once. For two, it’s undermining your efficiency in another way, too, because now you’re constantly distracted. You’re not doing the batching that we were talking about where you’re putting tasks together that makes sense. You’re just like haphazard with stuff being shot at you, and you’re never good at anything, and you’re constantly distracted all day long. You feel frazzled and busy, but you didn’t do anything.
Shawn: It’s a mess.
Shawn: This is not what successful people do. Multitasking, you’ve been told the great lie that multitasking is what brilliant business people do, highly successful people do. No. Not at all true. We need to kill this myth, now.
Tim: Yeah. Just one book reference there. If you don’t believe us, Leo Babauta—I think that’s how you say his last name—but, The Power of Less. And he talks about why it’s so important to single-task. So, we’ll link to that one in the show notes because it’s a great book to help beat procrastination. I don’t have anything else to add that. You crushed it.
Shawn: [chuckles] Thanks. Next tip to beat procrastination: “Modify your environment to eliminate distractions.” And it says, “How many of these have you told yourself? I’ll just check email one more time before I start. [Tim chuckles] I’ll go for a walk after I finished reading this magazine. I can paint the house next weekend; I want to watch the Seahawks game today.” Exactly. For a lot of people it’s probably just checking Facebook one more time, or Instagram one more time before you “blank.”
And yes, so modify your environment to eliminate distractions. There’s a lot of apps and services that can essentially turn off your phone and disconnect you from the internet so that you can focus on your work, on the computer or on your phone. You can also just hit airplane mode or whatever, or just turn off Wi-Fi on your laptop. But there are apps that can help you do this that simplify all that stuff on both the computer and your phone. And I would recommend doing those. Kind of like you’re blocking off that time that he talked about on your calendar, you need to block off the ability to be distracted and try and multitask, and have other things going on around you, so that you can focus. Set yourself up for success by allowing yourself to focus and not try and multitask.
Tim: Yeah, that’s great, Shawn. I also like how he talks about the physical environment. And you’ve talked about this before, how important it is to have a clean workspace and things like that. So, he mentions that. Remove the clutter from your desk space, if that’s where you’re working, or your kitchen space, or what whatever.
Shawn: All that can be distracting. Yeah, exactly. Reducing the noise is so important. And actually, quite literally, reducing noise [chuckles] around you can be important.
Shawn: So, if you have like a lot of road noise or someone’s in the office next door like really yakking it up.
Shawn: All of that can be distracting.
Tim: That’s a funny one, too, because I do hear people talk about listening to music and podcasts even while they’re trying to work. And I’ve seen studies where music at a certain level can actually help enhance focus. And maybe it comes back to like binaural beats or something like. I’m not sure.
Shawn: I don’t believe it can be music with lyrics, for me. I listen to lyrics.
Shawn: And I know I’ve said this before, the fact that if I ask you—I don’t know—Sweet Home Alabama or whatever the song is. Let’s say it’s some new song by Post Malone [chuckles] or whoever.
Tim: [chuckles] Shawn Wells.
Shawn: People know lyrics. And if I say a few lyrics to you, you know what to say back to me. That means that you’re processing that. That means you’re listening to that. That means you’re recording that. So that means that going back to that multitasking thing, that you’re less efficient when there’s music with words. I promise.
Shawn: So, if you can listen to music and be efficient, good for you, but it’s probably I would say something like classical music, or like you said, binaural beats or something where you’re not focusing on some level. There is focus being taken away to process words.
Tim: Yeah. No, I’m actually going to say the same thing because I often listen to podcasts when I’m cooking or when I’m taking a walk. And cooking is usually when something that I’ve made before, if I try to listen to a podcast when I’m making a new recipe, I can’t. I have to shut it off because I have to focus on what I’m doing. And there’s no way that I could actually do work like writing an article, for instance, while listening to something. Or it would just be background noise. So maybe if background noise somehow works for you. But I think what we’re saying is you just literally have to limit the noise.
Shawn: Right. Exactly. So, going on to Chalene, she says, “Know where you’re going if you want to beat procrastination. If I tell you not to think about a cat eating a banana while wearing a green sweatshirt, what do you immediately picture? We must tell our brains where to go and what to look for. What is your goal? Where do you want to go today? What is the one thing you need to do today? Think small and be very specific with these tasks, then write it down as a constant reminder of where you need to focus your attention.
I agree. So this is living with intention, and that’s a key to beat procrastination. And we’ve talked about doing gratitude journals and not only being thankful for all the things that go right in your life, and that’s important, but planning out your day. And then at the end of the day, taking stock of how you did. And that’s really important to do. So, now you’re living with intention and now you’re a lot less likely to: one, be distracted; two, multitask; three, go off course and do things that you’re not supposed to be doing; and four, you will focus on the right things and have a true plan in place.
And so all that comes from intention. All that comes from planning. And people that are disciplined win in that way. So, that makes a lot of sense to me, in ways to overcome procrastination, is to plan.
Tim: I definitely agree, Shawn. One thing I want to mention here about Chalene’s article is she actually kind of prefaces things with this mindfulness if you want to beat procrastination. And she talks about something that she likes to call a “destination procrastination,” which we might all have this. Basically Chalene describes it as a place you go to or the tasks you resort to in order to distract yourself from what you really need to be doing.
So, in her example, when she was starting her business, her destination procrastination was doing laundry. And so, she was working from home and before she got to that big thing, she would always get this laundry started. Some people call this a bumblebee dance, or whatever you want to call it, but it’s kind of a ritual that we do or we kind of resort to before we really get to what manners. So, as you’re listening to this and you know that you have a tendency to procrastinate, do you have this destination procrastination?
Shawn: I guess that could work two ways, though. That could almost be like the primer to puts you in the mental state to do well.
Tim: Yeah. Right.
Shawn: To set you up for success for that task. Or it could just completely be a distraction.
Shawn: That you just go to. Maybe it’s not your happy place, but you say, “I’m being productive.”
Shawn: And you’re justifying this activity that certainly is something that’s needed.
Shawn: And does take work. But it’s a different type of work and it’s not the work you need to be doing.
Tim: Right. I suppose, if you plan your blocks of time, if you’re planning your time that way, right? So to wash those dishes or empty the dishwasher. Whatever you need to do to get the mental clarity to move forward, I agree with that. It could build some momentum and actually, like you said, so you’re not thinking about that thing that you feel like you need to be doing, right?
Shawn: Right. So, the next tip to beat procrastination: “Tell people you’re on the way. When you tell someone you’re going to give them a ride, you always pick them up, right? If you tell someone you’re coming, you don’t let them down. Keep yourself accountable by telling others to keep you accountable and letting them know where you want to go. Share your goals with important people in your life, to ensure that you follow through.”
I like this tip to beat procrastination, and we’ve talked about mentors being extremely important. My trainer, Charlie, asked me about this the other day. I sat down with him and went over his business goals and life goals. And he said that he wants me to meet with him every so often, to hold him accountable. And I definitely said that can work and I want to do that. And I have people that I do this with, in my career that are extremely important to me.
We keep talking about the importance of mentors. You’re the product of the five people that are closest to you, so be thoughtful in those people that you choose to put around you. And have people that not only build you up. That’s great to have positive people. A lot of people are surrounded by negative voices, so you need to get those negative voices out, period. That’s not even debatable. But you do need people that: one, lift you up; but two, keep you accountable and are realistic with you. Not in a negative way, but in a in a constructive way, holding you to what’s good for you, holding you to your own word, and making you responsible for your actions.
This also makes me think about a pet peeve of mine, when people say they’re going to do something and don’t. Don’t be that person. We don’t like those people, so don’t be that person. If you say you’re going to do something, follow through. Don’t make excuses to yourself, to other people. Excuses are unacceptable 99% of the time, to me. Just be accountable. Follow through on what you say. But I agree with this on having people around you, being accountable, telling people what you’re doing. This kind of goes as the next step after planning is letting other people know.
Shawn: Yeah, totally agree. We talked about Craig Ballantyne and Pillars of Transformation, before and accountabilities. Definitely number one of those top fives.
Tim: Yeah, exactly.
Shawn: Yeah, we’ll link to Craig Ballantyne. He’s really good as well. Great content. Chalene’s next tip to beat procrastination: “Identify detours.” Again, this is a concept of destination procrastination, which Tim just brought up before. “I gave you my personal example of the laundry incident. I know that when I’m avoiding something, I immediately begin to clean and organize other things. What is your destination procrastination? What tasks or shiny objects distract you from the bigger picture and take you on the detour from reaching your goals?”
Tim: Rabbit holes are the antithesis to beat procrastination. Checking that Facebook, is that going to lead you down those rabbit holes? Or like you said, maybe the laundry is going to give you the clarity, give you the momentum to move forward. Or is it going to lead you to dusting and vacuuming and cleaning, and all these things, and just being a time-sucker that way. So, identify those things, for sure.
Shawn: Yeah, and certain activities that are fairly low brain activity, like doing laundry, might be able to be something where you’re in motion, something where you feel productive but that you can’t think while you’re doing it. And maybe it does, like I said before, prime you.
Tim: Some creativity.
Shawn: Yeah. It just depends on the person and the destination procrastination, as she puts it. That is a creative term.
Shawn: Next tip on the list to beat procrastination: “There’s more than one way. Did you know there’s not just one way to reach your goal? It doesn’t matter how you get there, it just matters that you get there. There’s more than one way. Don’t worry too much about the minor details. Fight only for the things you know will affect you reaching your destination. Aside from that, just enjoy the journey and be confident that you will arrive.” What do you think, Tim? This makes me think of there’s a quote. I think it’s about outcome orientation. I’m going to look it up. I was just curious on your thoughts.
Tim: Yeah. No, I agree. I think we talked earlier about having pretty clear expectations of what you want to accomplish during those blocks of times that you’re setting aside, and things like that. But sometimes things don’t always go according to plan and we have to be flexible with that, and know that, like she’s saying, that there’s more than one way to get there and you might find that taking a detour, as long as you’re still going down the path or a similar path toward the end goal, can actually be a better place to take. I’ll give an example.
Sometimes when I’m writing, I have an idea, a clear outline of how I want to approach the topic. But as I’m going through it, I might find that I can tell a better story by going a different way, and still get to the same outcome. Still get to the same take-home points, and things like that. So, yeah, I think that’s a great point and to not get frustrated when things may seem to not go according to plan, initially. Things tend to work out.
Shawn: Yeah, exactly. You know, you actually mentioned this with working out, like the behavior modification versus like losing 10 pounds.
Tim: Outcome vs. behavior-based goals?
Shawn: Yeah, exactly. And I’m looking at an article here that’s about actions vs. outcomes, and “Why setting the wrong goals can easily prevent your success.” And sometimes those outcome orientation can undermine you.
Tim: Yeah, that’s a great example. I totally agree.
Shawn: Cool. So the next tip to beat procrastination: “Focus on your finish. Do you remember your experience learning to ride a bike? It always seemed as if the object you were most focused on not running into [Tim chuckles] was the only thing you couldn’t avoid. I call this destination fixation.” I like that, too. “Our lives go where our focus lies. Our brains can’t process the negative, so focus instead on the positive. Where do you want to go? What goal do you want to achieve? From now on, rather than thinking of all the things that could go wrong or the reasons why you should put something off, focus on your finish and focus on all the positive.”
What I like about this is exactly what I was just talking about, is she seems to be very behavior-focused versus outcome-focused.
Shawn: And the behaviors are setting you up for success. And she’s saying stay positive, plan, and reduce distractions, and you’re good to go, kind of.
Tim: You’re doing the best you can.
Tim: To produce that desired outcome.
Tim: We can’t always control the outcomes. All we can control is our behaviors and our reactions to the things that are going around us right.
Shawn: Boom! Boom, people. Are you feeling that?
Tim: And your attitude. Have a positive attitude, for Pete’s sake.
Shawn: It’s huge, it’s huge. Here’s the next tip to beat procrastination: “Fill up your tank. To stay focused and keep moving towards your goals, you must protect your energy and mojo. Surround yourself with people that motivate you and push you forward, and steer clear of the people that bring you down.” I was just talking about this. “Who or what gives you energy and fills your tank? Write down activities people and things that make you feel good, then make more time to have more of those things in your life.”
Again, it’s positivity. And another key point of positivity is putting people around you that are positive. And another key point is planning it out. And she talks about writing it down. What are the things that light you up? What are the things that bring you down? Who were the people that light you up? Who are the people that bring you down? Now that you’re cognizant of that, make some changes.
Tim: Yeah, absolutely. You already mentioned this, we’re the average of the five people that we’re spending the most time with. Those things like that, literally, take a real reality check and think about the people you’re spending time with. Are they energizing, inspiring you, motivating you? Or are they energy vampires, that are just bringing you down.
Shawn: 100%, energy vampires is huge to think about.
Shawn: [laughs]Next tip to beat procrastination: “Use technology to your advantage.” We did a whole show on this, that technology can be amazing to leverage, like Evernote, OneNote, Google Keep, Google Calendar, Outlook. I even use this Google Inbox that filters emails and prioritizes emails for me. Google has this thing called Digital Wellbeing now, where you can actually manipulate your notifications. At certain times you’ll get them. And then the degree to which you get notifications, and all this stuff. There’s even the fitness apps now, where you can have fitness trackers. There’s so many great things now because of technology, you can do, to make yourself healthier, more efficient. You can learn online. There’s amazing documentaries on Netflix. There’s amazing documentaries on YouTube. You can look up how to take apart an engine on YouTube. I mean, we are in a great time. Wikipedia and all the things that you can access, right? Technology is amazing. But, there’s a flip-side.
Tim: There is. I was just going to say, even on a smaller scale, Shawn, we’ve already talked about how we can one, use alarms, like use our phones to set those alarms to schedule that time.
Tim: We have this great little thing with electronics now, that’s an off switch.
Tim: [chuckles] We can turn off our email. We can turn off apps like Skype and things like that, so we’re not getting distractions. So, those are other ways to use technology to our advantage. And like you’re kind of alluding to there, that these things can become significant time-suckers if we allow them to.
Shawn: If we let them. If you can’t figure out how to do all that stuff, like Tim said, you can just turn your phone off. Or if you need to use your alarms and do that technique Tim was talking about, then just put your phone in airplane mode and use the alarms, if you can’t figure out how to do all that crazy stuff. But I encourage you to look up how to do some of these things and get more adept with your phone or your laptop.
Tim: We’re going to finish where we started.
Shawn: Yeah, the next tip to beat procrastination: “Adapt a ‘right now’ attitude.” Exactly. So she says, “Oftentimes we procrastinate. We get into this ‘Whoa is me’ mindset. Stop spending so much time worrying about why not me, and make opportunities happen for yourself. Adopt a ‘right now’ attitude. When you set aside time to work on your goal, get into the habit of focusing on what’s important right now. Things will never be perfect and the time will never be just right, so don’t be afraid to just go for it and do it now.”
This is so true. I hear this over and over. I’m in several Masterminds and successful people that I’ve talked to, they adopt that 80/20 rule, where it’s good enough and you hand it off to someone. You can do it 80% of the way and then get someone to finish it. And just keep moving, keep moving on stuff. It’s all about momentum. It’s all about moving. It’s never about perfection. You can get hung up on perfection. You can waste a lot of time on perfection. And while you’re perfecting something, you could have already done six other things.
And successful people crank. And they do great work and they hand it off to someone else to finish up, to read through, to double-check, to get it the rest of the way. And that’s important. That’s an important thing to learn that, yes, you need to do it now. You need to jump on it, but you don’t need to waste time on perfection.
Tim: Right. Exactly. Aubrey Marcus, who we’ve mentioned before. I was listening to him speak one time and he put it this way, he said, “Sometimes you just have to give yourself no other choice. There is no other option.” I think he was talking about taking cold showers, or something like that, at the time. It was like, “This doesn’t sound awesome, but you know what? There was no other option.” Maybe you’re procrastinating your exercise. Just give yourself no other option. Or procrastinating on getting this project started. Give yourself no other option, and you will beat procrastination.
One other thing I’d mention there, like sometimes we procrastinate because we don’t know where to start. Start anywhere. With writing an article, doing a project, presentation, or whatever. You could start smack dab in the middle. Wherever you feel comfortable starting, just start. And then you can flesh things out. Because once you get in it, you start to build some momentum and you can build around it. But just get started and do it now.
Shawn: Well, there you go, some great tips to beat procrastination. I love that. Thank you for listening, BioTrust Nation. We really appreciate you. And hopefully you don’t procrastinate listening to this episode, and you don’t procrastinate sharing this episode with other people.
Tim: This guy.
Shawn: And don’t procrastinate doing a review for us on iTunes, or wherever you’re listening. We really do appreciate your feedback. And again, there’s a free product in it for you if you go to BioTrust.com/VIP and ask a question there, and we read it on the show. Or if you do a review on iTunes or any other venue and we review that on the show. So we, again, really appreciate you and we’ll be talking to you guys soon. Thanks so much.
Tim: Thanks, gang.