Dealing with procrastination

I often see myself in the situation of having a little bit of time to dedicate to my personal projects but with low energy to do anything.

It is interesting because being involved with social marketing, a technology to change behaviors, I found myself several times being prey of old habits, scarce self-regulation resources and sheer procrastination. I have tried the implemmentation intentions approach but it didn’t work for me, at least given my current constraints.

So about two months ago I remembered a book that I read some years ago and decided to give a try to its simple technique.

The idea is to reduce the intended behavior to the smallest possible action. So, for instance, if I want to prepare for a test, my daily goal is to take one, just one, exercise to practice. If I want to write a paper, my daily goal is to write just one line. In practice, you create ridiculously simple, small and doable actions so you can perform them easily; they represent a small step towards your big and hairy goals and if you somehow skips one day you can easily catch up the next day without feeling guilty. And the big advantage of this technique is that you usually do a little more than your daily goal. I usually end up doing 7-10 exercises or writing 6-8 lines – or even more.

The small book that I read about 3 years ago and kind of dismissed it until now was this one:

What about you? How you deal with procrastination and your own behavior change?