THE TOP 20 EXCUSES FOR NOT GETTING ANYTHING DONE
If you were to make a list of the top 20 excuses for procrastination, what would it look like?
1. IT’S UNPLEASANT.
No doubt it is. But is it going to become less unpleasant as time goes on?
2. IT’S NOT DUE YET.
Right! So now you have an opportunity instead of a problem. An opportunity to gain some lead time, to do the job the way it ought to be done, to be in control and to work at your own pace instead of being a slave to a clock or a calendar.
3. I WORK BETTER UNDER PRESSURE.
4. MAYBE THE TASK WILL TAKE CARE OF ITSELF IF I JUST IGNORE IT LONG ENOUGH.
5. IT’S TOO EARLY IN THE DAY.
Some salesmen make frequent use of this one, believing that it’s better not to make calls before prospects have a chance to handle the mail and get their day started. The successful ones, however, recognize this rationalization for what it is: an excuse for indolence.
6. IT’S TOO LATE IN THE DAY.
Successful salesmen know that one of the secrets of success is the extra business they can get by making just one more call every day before quitting, rather than conning themselves into calling only at the “optimum” time.
7. I DON’T HAVE MY PAPERS WITH ME.
(Or my school books, or my glasses, or my tools, whatever). Ask yourself why you don’t have what you need to and what you are going to do to avoid getting caught again without the required materials.
8. IT’S DIFFICULT.
Never let the difficulty of a task stand as an adequate reason for not acting; force yourself to identify precisely what it is to be gained in the long run by delay. In most cases you’ll find you can’t. The harder something is, the greater the challenge and the sweeter the fruits of accomplishment.
9. I DON’T FEEL LIKE DOING IT NOW.
Good. That gives you a wonderful opportunity to prove to yourself that you are not a captive of your moods.
10. I HAVE A HEADACHE.
Like many other reasons, this may be a legitimate reason for delay or it may not.
11. DELAY WON’T MAKE MUCH DIFFERENCE.
This is perhaps the most common rationalization of all and the most erroneous. Delay does make a difference, nearly always. It diminishes the chance that the task will ever get done; it increases the likelihood that it will be done haphazardly; it robes you of the confidence that comes from knowing that you are completely in control; and it reinforces a bad habit that is sure to cause you trouble in connection with other matters.
12. IT MAY BE IMPORTANT, BUT IT ISN’T URGENT.
13. IT MIGHT HURT.
14. I REALLY MEAN TO DO IT BUT I KEEP FORGETTING.
15. IF I PUT IT OFF, SOMEBODY ELSE MIGHT DO IT.
That might get the job done but it won’t do much for your reputation among your friends or family, assuming that you are the logical person to have done the task.
16. IT MIGHT BE EMBARRASSING.
17. I’M TOO TIRED.
Learn to look for the “second wind” that come quite often if you just hang in there for a few minutes longer. Don’t call it quits every time you run into that “first layer of fatigue.”
18. I’M TOO BUSY RIGHT NOW.
A fine, universal, irrefutable, all-purpose rationalization for the would-be procrastinator.
19. I’VE GOT TO TIDY UP FIRST.
20. I NEED TO SLEEP ON IT.