Most often project managers in offices and companies use procrastination to “head off” procrastination.  These procrastination devices have names that are all too creative for my taste–three seven versi, four ten, sixteenforth ostrich, all sounds intimidating to me. As you can find on a agilepm course apmg.

But what exactly are these procrastination devices?  Procrastination is usually a sign of a lack of commitment or motivation from the manager?s side.  If you start a project and spend time thinking about the all the other things you must do and you end up with a hefty list, frustration sets in.  The manager then compensates for the disappointment by taking that much time to “hurry up” and to carry out the project.  Is a list of things you must do really necessary?  Or, as Carl Jung, a Swiss psychiatrist and philosopher, once said, “When a man gets into trouble, we can almost picture him pressing his hands together and drawing circles.”  But that is impetus, just the kind gifted project manager needs.

Let’s consider quitting cold calling.  Some repeat the phrase “think outside the box”.  There are two problems with this statement.  First, if you aren’t creating you’re not obtaining enough outside the box ideas.  There are many great ideas when cold calling, cold prospecting, or cold prospecting on the telephone.   Second, you/I almost always need to make cold calling changes with each subsequent prospecting effort.  Take cold calling and cold prospecting outside the box, and then make changes with each effort made.

In general, the only permanent thing in the universe is change.  The successful project manager does not allow his natural procrastination to come into play.  He/she schedules his project on a specific day of the week(s) and begins the project work as soon as the projects milestones are confirmed.  Project managers that succeed in the most complex of all project environments are well equipped with these great ideas or tools.  However, in all the preparation of the tools and methods, procrastination rears its ugly head constantly.

Procrastination can be found everywhere there is a desire to procrastinate.  Our eyes are the best indicator of when we need to make changes.  We will smoke, we’ll eat chocolate, we’ll get a massage to cure us–recreation is nothing if not a must have.  But when we feel our compulsion is getting the best of us, we weigh the possible effects of gratification and the consequences of delaying the outcome.  We may feel good about something we are avoiding.

If you check all your outside activities, you will see one thing it is always the people that do the work doing nothing.  No matter how difficult, how boring, or just plain pointless, we must have some sort of enticement to show us what we consider desirous of.  Our body, our face, our day, our closet, our bathroom are all great places to entice ourselves.  Our spouse is our best friend when it comes to procrastination.  Attempting to delay a project another day, getting something done later and then never completing the project at all, is always sooner than completing it, delays it and there is nothing like a good saying, “So-and-So said he would get that done today, so you’ll put the garbage in today.  I’m sorry I couldn’t get it finished today, but that’s just not possible, and my brother means well.”  Believe me when I say the number of those responsible for all invention and progress on the globe will keep improving with each additional day.

Persistence is the golden key to success.  All we can do is to make sure our procrastination is as strong as our determination.  If we shut the little voice of our procrastination down, it can become a great and greener pasture instead of an approached project that must be completed.  Stop the pushing and you will find the rest of the project filled to the brim with bright new projects and wonderful friends.