Here are some foot- dragging steps that are sure to keep you buried in things to do.
Floundering – The failure to focus attention and efforts in a single direction. The cause is a lack of clear-cut goals. This trap can be avoided by crystallizing your goals. Try writing them down on paper. Make them as specific as possible. And Give Them Accomplishment Dates.
Wheel-Spinning – Trying to do something so you’ll feel busy but accomplishing little or nothing. This usually happens when we let ourselves get behind in our work and try to assuage out guilty feelings by doing everything at once. You won’t solve the problem by frantic activity. Survey your list and make a schedule to accomplish everything in a realistic time frame.
Fire-Fighting – Living in a state of perpetual crisis. We often end up like this due to a lack of planning and goals. It’s important to include in your schedule planning time. Take the time to sit down and review your schedule and you goals on a daily and weekly basis.
Vacillation – Indecision. This happens when we fail to weigh the alternatives or consider the possibilities. Get tough with yourself. Weigh the pros and cons, write down all the possibilities and make decisions. Trying to do something and failing is better than trying to do nothing and succeeding.
Dawdling – Drifting, daydreaming, dilly-dallying. This is a failure to keep your goals clearly in mind and make them a priority. Give yourself a deadline and stick to it. Promise yourself a reward when you’ve done it.
Spraying – Diverting your efforts to many tasks instead of one; spreading yourself too thin. This is also the result of a failure to focus on your goals. After you’ve written down your goals, focus all your energy on accomplishing them one at a time.
Switching – Starting one project and getting diverted to another one half-way through. Again, you’ve lost the focus of your goals and plan. Don’t let yourself be satisfied until the job is done.
Acquiescing – The inability to say no. This can be caused by the desire to please other people, guilt, timidity, lack of self-discipline. You must learn that you don’t have to please everyone. When someone makes a request of you that delays or interferes with your plans, politely but firmly refuse. And this includes yourself. Don’t give in to self indulgence.
Rehashing – Dwelling on past accomplishments, problems or failures. Here you have an unwillingness to deal with the present. Let the past go. Concentrate on what is and what can be. You do now live in the past. You live in the present. The future will become the present faster than you think.
Perfectionism – Unwillingness to compromise; unrealistic expectations. When we set our goals too high, we run the risk of becoming intimidated by our own goals. Learn to strive for excellence, not perfection. You want to be sure to set realistic, not idealistic, goals.