Tips & Talk 59 – When is it Okay to Procrastinate?

Would you categorize yourself as a procrastinator? When I think about people I know, I can see how they do lean one way or another.

On the extremes, there’s the excessive planner. Someone who has everything buttoned up way before a due date. And then there’s the “get it done at the last minute” style.

I fall fully on the plan-ahead side. I like to eliminate as many surprises and rush jobs as possible. But of course, we come in all shapes and sizes as they say. I’m not saying one is better than another.

However, there are definite times when, not only is it okay, but you should ignore your natural tendencies and do things differently. We talk about how to know which way to go in today’s show.

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Transcript
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Would you categorize yourself as a procrastinator?

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When I think about people,

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I know I can see how they do lean one way

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or another on the extremes.

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There's the excessive planner,

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someone who has everything buttoned up way before a due date.

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And then there's the,

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get it done at the last minute style.

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I fall fully on the plan ahead side.

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I like to eliminate as many surprises and rush jobs as

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possible, but of course we come in all shapes and sizes.

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I'm not saying one is better than another.

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However, I do think it's valuable to consider when not only

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is it okay,

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but you should ignore your natural tendencies and do things differently.

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This topic came up for me as I was observing how

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different people prepared for a recent event.

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I participated in each of us had roles to play and

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responsibilities to fulfill.

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We all willingly volunteered for these roles.

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So there was no arm twisting or be grudgingly agreeing to

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participate. You know how that can be.

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Sometimes the event grew near and one person in particular waited

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until the last minute to do everything.

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It was kind of okay,

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since it didn't affect else's participation.

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And I just thought,

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gosh, not my style,

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but whatever,

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no judgment at all,

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until afterwards,

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this person let's call her Janice thought through,

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but never fully prepared for her presentation.

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Consequently, the result was not what she wanted.

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And she was really upset with herself for days afterwards,

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just to give you an idea,

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the lighting and the camera angles were off and for a

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virtual meeting,

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that's super important.

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Of course,

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she never did a run-through to practice her timing.

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So she didn't even get to some of the major points

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in her program.

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And there were other things too,

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but you get the idea.

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This left her feeling really bad about herself.

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She couldn't shake it and as innocent a mistake as it

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was, who needs that?

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The only thing I can think is Janice has learned through

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this crisis.

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So hopefully next time she'll do it differently today.

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I want to help prevent you from experiencing the horrible situation

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Janice went through because these things are avoidable and it doesn't

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mean you have to completely switch to being a plan ahead

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person. In fact,

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there are times when it's important to prepare ahead and also

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times when there's an advantage to waiting until the last minute.

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I bet you didn't see that coming.

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So here are the guidelines for when you should and when

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you should not procrastinate,

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when it's okay to procrastinate.

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The first is when an event is far enough in the

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future, that there's no reason to begin thinking about the prep

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yet. Maybe you've signed up for a craft show and that

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isn't happening until six months from now.

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You can set a reminder in your calendar for when you

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should start finalizing things,

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but it doesn't have to be done.

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Now another time when Delaine makes sense is when all the

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details aren't available yet you've agreed to conduct a workshop or

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be on a podcast.

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You don't have all the information yet.

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So to plan ahead,

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based on assumptions could actually result in rework,

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which takes up more time.

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Of course you may not know how long you'll have where

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the event is to be held yet.

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Anything like that in situations like this,

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wait until you have all the information you need so that

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you can prepare properly.

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And only once another time when it's okay to procrastinate is

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if it's something that you've done before you have experience with

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the task at hand.

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So you only need to tweak a few things and virtually,

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then you'll be ready to go.

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For example,

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if you've done shows before,

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so you know the process,

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you know,

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your table set up how you want to display,

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how you are going to get everything to this shows,

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check out all of those things.

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The updates in the final details can wait.

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And finally,

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you can procrastinate when the cost of error is low,

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whatever said project or task is needs to be done,

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but it's not something that is significant enough to require a

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lot of forethought,

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perhaps none at all.

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Some things can just be done on the fly.

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Now let's get to things when it is not okay to

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procrastinate. Number one,

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when it's your first time doing something,

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you definitely want to plan ahead for your first craft show.

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There's a lot to do.

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You need to plan your display,

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your checkout system,

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promotion signs,

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pricing. All of these things are a first and you want

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time to think through and create also think of networking meetings.

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It's a good idea to think through your introduction message.

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This is my term for an elevator speech and not leave

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it to chance when it's your turn to get up and

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speak. You're new at this.

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And don't want to miss the valuable opportunity to make a

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good impression and present you and your business in the best

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way possible.

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Another time not to procrastinate is if the tech is brand

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new to you,

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maybe you're doing your first Facebook live selling show or an

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Instagram live where you're going to be bringing on a guest.

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You want it to go smoothly.

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It makes all the sense in the world to practice the

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tech and have your content outlined or even scripted.

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You'll feel more confident.

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And your execution of the event will come off professional.

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How about formal presentations or workshops,

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even if you've done presentations before,

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if this is a new one,

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you'll want to do at least one or two dry runs

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to perfect.

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Your speaking nuances,

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transitions from slide to slide or topic to topic.

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Also the timing.

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So you get all your information across and leave time for

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Q and a.

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Here's an important one.

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Don't procrastinate when others need your input to move forward on

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their tasks.

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Have you ever been part of a committee and your responsibilities

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can't start until someone else has completed their portion.

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If they procrastinate your left waiting.

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And when they finally finish their part,

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you're scrambling to complete yours.

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I've been in this situation a number of times,

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and it's so frustrating and disrespectful.

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It also left me with a negative opinion and certainly no

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interest in doing projects with that person ever again.

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Don't be that person.

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And finally,

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you don't ever want to procrastinate when there's a lot riding

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on the project or event.

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This can either mean financially or personally,

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where performing poorly can risk the reputation of your business or

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your image overall procrastination.

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It's not a dirty word and there's a time and a

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place to go with your natural style and a time to

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push in the other direction.

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Don't end up like Janice,

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kicking yourself for not applying the right actions and leaving your

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results up to chance.

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It's simply not worth it.

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That's a wrap.

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I'm a get to the point kind of girl.

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And this is what you can expect from these quick mid-week

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sessions. Now it's your turn go out and fulfill that dream

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of yours.

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