How I stop procrastination

Lack of ideas can kill creativity. The next close thing is procrastination.

This whole idea of do it later, I have more than enough time to finish can lead to mad dash to complete critical projects.

This situation has caught me several times. I remember working on a project got the main parts done only to finish it up. What happened was I put it off for a few days and ended up have to rush to finish it.

Here are some tips that helped me tackle procrastination.

  1. Do it now: if something needs to get done dot it now. For example you need to set an appointment to speak to a client instead of putting it off make the call now.
  2. Write down your ideas: another example you have a writing project and have a few ideas write them down as you get it. Outline it as best as you can. Flesh it out as you get the ideas. When you sit down to write you already did most of the work.
  3. Keep an idea journal: if you love to read keep track of quotes that inspire you. Photographers have a look book with shots, poses and composition to draw from. Some marketers have a swipe file with ideas to help them start a project.
  4. Start before you are ready: doing things ahead of time can help youove quickly. Have a project due 2 months from now complete it ahead of time. Do things in bulk and schedule them. Write more than you need. Take more photos than needed. Put plans in place before you need them.

In all cases don’t put it off for later. Get it done now. You may never get around to doing it.

How to stop procrastination

There’s a popular Jamaican saying that says delay is danger.

The true meaning of that saying comes alive when you are working on a project and the deadline is fast approaching and you have not started.

Its not that you mean to but other things have caught your attention or starting maybe difficult.

I know this situation all too well and have found 4 things that help me overcome procrastination.

1. Do it now

If something needs to get done do it now.

For example, you need to set an appointment to speak to a client instead of putting it off do it now.

2. write ideas as they come

Another example, if you have a writing project and have a few ideas write them down as you get it.

Leaving it until later is dangerous because you may not remember what it is.

Outline it and flesh it out now. Whe you ready to sit down to right you already did most of the work.

3. Keep a journal

If you love to read keep track of quotes that inspire you. Similarly, keep photographs you like the look of, shots that inspire you and compositions.

If you are a designer you can keep a swipe file of flyers and other designs you like. They can give you ideas for starting projects.

4. Start before you are ready

Doing things before you need them can help you move quickly.

Have a project due in 2 months start it out. Finish it before it’s needed so that if any changes need to be made it can be done before it ships.

Do things in bulk and schedule them out. Write more than needed. Take more photos than necessary and put plans in place before you have a need for them.

In all cases don’t put things off for later get it done now. You may never get around to it.

5 software tools I can’t do without as a content creator

As a content creator software tools are my best friend. It’s the center of all I do.

These are 5 type of tools that I would recommend anybody to have and know how to use.

1. Audio editor

An audio editor such as Adobe audition is my best friend. It helps me clean up interview, pick out quotes for features and mix down podcasts and other projects.

Investing in an audio editor will make the world of difference to your videos and podcast.

2. Video editor

If you create tons of videos, whether for YouTube, Facebook or otherwise investing in a video will be necessary.

You can cut out mistakes, add titles, lower thirds and other graphics to polish off your video.

You can also cut and splice things together. Add music and other elements.

Adobe premier, Vegas pro, Wonderware fillmora and final cut pro are good options in this category.

3. Photo editing tool

Instagram has increase the use of photo online. So having an editor to tweak your photos will be good investment.

From creating flyers, info graphics and croping images a good photo editor is the next tool on this list.

You also use it to create images for blog post, book covers, carousel for Instagram and so on.

Photoshop, gimp, abode lightroom and affinity photo are great options in this category.

4. Desktop publisher

Desktop publishers can help you create books. Though you can do certain things in word or Google docs these tools can help you create pdf documents and fillable forms.

If you are looking to create ebooks, a desktop publisher will come in handy.

Affinity publisher, Adobe indesign and scribus are good options to look at.

5. Vector graphic

Vector graphic software can help you design logos useful shapes and icons that can be used in other design.

Illustrator, Inkscape and affinity designers are good options.

Though you may not use all of them but having access at somepoint will make your life easier. Knowing how to use them as well will be a blessing.

How to optimize your workflow

Have you ever started working on a project only to get stuck. Or becomes side tracked only to realize your deadline is fast approaching and you’ve made little progress.

You may make a mad dash to complete it or you ask for more time. But the feeling of lack of progress on a project can get overwhelming at times.

At the beginning of my career as a writer working for a media company meeting deadlines use to frighten me.

Luckily after some experimentation and research I found 5 ways to optimize my workflow that I think can help you meet those deadlines.

1. Break project into steps

Worse thing you can do is doing everything all at once. Break the process apart to increase your focus.

What this will help is help you make small wins and make the project manageable.

2. Batch similar task together

I learn this from Michael Hyatt’s book free to focus. The concept is simple, group similar task on your calendar.

Work on everything in batches to increase your focus and save you time later.

For example, do all interviews on the same day. Write your peice at another time.

If you’re a designer, spend time to find all your ideas. Spend time to download all resources needed. Then sketch out all concepts then finalize them on another day.

3. Create templates and systems.

Creating templates and systems is critical to optimizing workflow.

In the book emyth Micheal Gerber emphasizes the need to be able to repeat results. If you know how to do something really well create a template or system to ensure you can get that basic result faster.

If you do something repeatedly everyday create a template. It helps you get consistent results everytime.

4. Review only when finished

There’s a chance you want to scrutinize your work on the go. Don’t do it. Make changes only when you are finished with the original idea.

Editing while you’re working will only waste time. Lengthen the time to actually finish and worse make you miss your deadline.

5. Get all the tools you need for the job

Invest in the right tools to make life easier. Don’t look at the cost upfront, look at the time you will save buying the right tools.

This could mean, software, plug-ins, physical tools, templates even people. Get what you need to get the job done.

Optimizing your workflow will take some time. Once you put the measures in place you will see your productivity improve.