How to Stop Being Lazy and Get Things Done

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Here’s how you can combat laziness and start taking action towards your goals. 

I think everyone feels lazy from time to time. 

And having a lazy day where you sit around and do nothing isn’t a bad thing. It only becomes a problem when it hinders you from getting things done and working towards your goals. 

Because as humans, we don’t like to feel stuck, we need to be growing in some way. 

But the good news is that laziness is not a personality trait, it’s a habit. So just like any other habit, you can get rid of it. 

Now, changing a habit isn’t the easiest thing since it’s something that we do automatically but there are ways to make the whole habit formation a bit easier.

So here’s what I do when I’m trying to stop being lazy. 

Reframe your mindset

The first thing that you need to do is to stop identifying as a lazy person. 

If you’re saying the phrase ‘I’m lazy’ or ‘lazy girl problems’, you need to stop. Because your brain believes what you continuously tell it so if you’re constantly saying that you’re lazy, you’re going to be lazy. 

So make sure your mindset is in check and that you’re telling yourself things that support the person that you want to be. 

Because beating yourself up circles back around to that pesky inner critic of yours. She’s the one who is saying that you aren’t capable of being productive and getting things done so you might as well watch another episode of the latest Netflix binge. 

You need to stop saying these things to yourself. You need to encourage yourself and tell yourself that you can do the hard things and put in the work. 

By reframing the negative self-talk into a more positive self-talk, you’ll be in a much better place to get off the couch and put in the reps. 

Self Awareness

Since you aren’t inherently lazy, there is a reason behind not wanting to do it. Laziness is usually a symptom of a bigger issue. 

The two big ones are

  1. You don’t like doing the task 
  2. You don’t fully understand what the point of it is. 

You don’t like doing the task

There are plenty of tasks that as an adult I’m sure you don’t like doing. Think of that chore that you always put off for example. 

Cleaning the bathroom is at the bottom of a lot of people’s to-do lists. But it has to get done if you don’t want to live in filth. 

I don’t like doing it so it’s harder to convince myself to leave the comfy couch for it. So, I push it off until I can’t take it anymore or people are coming over.

Since I know this about myself, I schedule it into my weekly planner. This way it gets done in a timely manner. I don’t rely on just feeling like doing it because I won’t ever feel like it. 

You don’t fully understand what the point of it is

The second reason is a little harder to identify because it’s tied to your purpose and having a clear why. 

So most chores don’t fall into this category. 

But forcing yourself to get up and go for a run when you’re training for a marathon can be easily tied to a purpose.  You’re doing the run so you don’t die when you try to run 26.2 miles. 

It’s simple but you can go deeper than that. Why did you sign up for the marathon? If you can find that buried reason why, it’ll help you get up when you realllyyy don’t feel like it (and there are going to be days when you don’t feel like it). 

By taking the time to build your self-awareness muscle and realize what you like and what you don’t will make it easier to identify when one of these two things may be a factor in your feeling of laziness. 

And then you can plan accordingly to set yourself up for the most success. 

Set Specific Goals

Once you know what you want and understand your preferences better, it’s time to make sure your goals are aligned with your vision. 

Setting goals is going to make it easier to determine that why and tie tasks to a purpose. Then those seemingly mundane tasks are just going to be habits that support you in reaching that specific goal. 

It’s important that your goals are specific so you can create action steps to get there. 

To keep going with the marathon example, running 26.2 miles is super specific. With this, you can create a running plan and you’ll know when you’ve reached your goal. 

Rather than saying you want to run more because going out for a 2-minute run is technically running more but is that getting you to the real goal (better health, checking off a bucket item task, etc.)? 

Probably not. 

The most important thing is that you’re setting goals that you find interesting or pulled towards, not what society tells you that you should be doing.

Life is so much more sweet when we have a passion.

Becuase then you aren’t going to like doing the task and we’re back on reason #1 of why you’re feeling lazy.

I get it though, you’re never going to feel like cleaning the bathroom but if one of your goals is to have a clean house so that your family isn’t living in a messy, dirty place then it may help boost the motivation a bit. 

When setting goals, try to be specific and tie it to a why so that you can be less lazy and get it done. 

Create a Plan

Once you have specific goals, it’s time to create a plan of action. Because without a plan to execute these goals, the goals are really just dreams. 

If you struggle with lazy tendencies, I would make a plan for each day. However, make sure that you aren’t filing your schedule to the brim and that you still have time to rest and relax.

Because remember, having lazy days or moments isn’t a bad thing. It’s actually going to help you avoid burnout and show up more fully. It’s only a problem if it becomes a habit that deters you from getting things done.

So the goal isn’t to never watch Netflix ever again. It’s just to find the balance between getting things done and relaxing. Because if you’re getting the things you want done AND spending time on the couch, you aren’t going to feel lazy. 

But if you tend to become lazy once your butt hits the couch, I would schedule the most important tasks first. That way, once you have those tasks completed, you won’t feel guilty sitting on the couch binging Netflix for the rest of the day. 

The biggest thing is that you just start. Sometimes I have to do a lot of convincing to force myself to do the things I don’t want to do but I’ve realized that once I start, I have the momentum to get through the task and complete it. 

So if you really aren’t feeling it, tell yourself that you’ll do it for 5 minutes, and if you’re still feeling that pushback, stop if you want. 

Because usually, those 5 minutes are all I need to keep going and complete the task. 

Time management techniques 

Since the goal isn’t to completely write off being lazy, it’s important that you’re using your time wisely. 

So pick your favorite time management technique to keep you focused on the task at hand. That way, you can get things done in less time so you can get to the part where you can be lazy and relax. 

I like to think of productivity as finding ways to get things done in less time so I have more time to enjoy my life. 

I personally like the Pomodoro technique since it breaks tasks into 25-minute increments so it seems more manageable to me.

Time blocking is also a good technique especially if you know a task is going to take more than 25 minutes.

If you’re time blocking your schedule, give yourself more time than you think you need, especially at first. 

If it’s a task that you’re trying to consistently incorporate into your routine, once you have a better idea of how long it takes, you can always cut the time down. 

This way you won’t feel like you’re rushing from one thing to the next which can lead to feelings of tiredness and taking a ‘quick’ break on the couch.

Which is always my downfall so I like to give myself time to flow from one task to the next to reduce feelings of overwhelm. 

Check your surroundings

It’s crazy how much the people and the environment around us affect us. 

If you’re around motivated individuals, you’re going to be more motivated. If you’re in a cluttered environment, your mind is going to be cluttered.

So check your surroundings and make sure they’re supporting the person that you want to be. Are the people motivating you to be better or to be complacent with where you are?

Because when people say they’re lazy, this is usually a bad thing. So if you’re saying this, it tells me that you don’t like your environment.

Otherwise, you wouldn’t be complaining. 

So you can look externally at the people and environment around you but you also have to point the finger back at yourself. 

Check your habits

And when you do that, the first place I’d look is at your habits. What habits are causing you to be lazy and not get things done?

Then figure out what habits you could add or remove to help you be more productive. 

What is causing you to watch TV all day? To skip workouts? To not put in the work for your online business? 

Next, ask yourself what you can do to make it easier to not be lazy. Do you have to go to a local coffee shop to get work done because you get too distracted at home?

Rob Dial on the Mindset Mentor has suggested taking the couch cushions off the couch when you need to get things done because then the couch isn’t comfortable so maybe that’s something you need to do.

Maybe you need to put your phone in another room or turn off the notifications to limit distractions. 

Really, I think a lot of us could solve our laziness problem if we found a way to disconnect more often. So think of ways you can get off your phone.

There are settings in your phone nowadays that’ll help you limit the amount of time you’re on certain apps so maybe you need to do that.

It doesn’t have to be this complex thing. It can be as simple as hiding your phone, couch cushions or blankets. 

Set boundaries

Once you figure out what you need to do to be more productive, it’s time to set boundaries around it. 

Figuring out what boundaries you need to set with the people and your environment is going to support you on your journey to becoming less lazy. 

By having strong boundaries around your routine, it’s going to help you get things done with more ease.

So think of ways you can create an internal and external environment that supports this non-lazy person that you want to be. 

Discipline

It’s important to keep in mind that you aren’t always going to feel motivated to get things done. 

There are going to be times when you’re not going to want to do it. Where you’re going to be watching an episode of Love is Blind on Netflix while taking a break and you keep saying one more episode.

And before you know it, you’ve watched 3. (Netflix knows what they’re doing to keep people watching by ending episodes on a cliffhanger) 

I can blame Netflix if I want but it also comes down to me not having the discipline to turn it off. Because no one is forcing me to watch Love is Blind, I’m choosing to so I need to own up to this pitfall.

And then figure out how I can become more disciplined to be better next time. Even if that means watching 2 episodes instead of 3. It’s all about becoming 1% better so it’s okay to take small steps forward. 

The thing with procrastination and watching ‘One More Episode’ is that you’re only hurting yourself. You get to decide that you want to become more disciplined and do the hard thing and turn off the TV.

But if you’re constantly finding yourself procrastinating, it may be time to ask yourself why you don’t want to do it.

Do you truly need that time to rest?

Or are you scared to put in the work? 

By asking yourself why, you can uncover what is holding you back from just knocking it out.

If you struggle with being self-disciplined, finding an accountability partner may help. You don’t have to do it all by yourself so if recruiting your spouse or a friend is going to motivate you to put in the reps, then do it. 

There is no shame in asking for help so if an accountability buddy is what you need, speak up.

Celebrate 

And lastly, make sure you take a moment to celebrate any progress you make. 

Celebrate when you force yourself to turn off the TV and go for that run.

Celebrate when you followed your plan and only slipped up once or twice. 

It’s important to pat yourself on the back with any small win you experience. Taking the time to celebrate your accomplishments, no matter how big or small, is going to give you a dopamine hit and it’ll help you to keep going. 

So decide how you’re going to celebrate and as always, be specific. 

What moments are going to prove that you’re moving away from this persona of a lazy person? 

Make sure that you celebrate as often as you can and remember, you got this.

Until next time,

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