The mice who became an elephant

Ever found yourself staring at your to-do list, looking at those daunting tasks you’ve been putting off for days? You know the ones. You look at them and think ‘I really need to do this, I’ll do it later.’

Yes, this is called procrastinating

In this video, I’m diving into one simple trick to kick procrastination to the curb.

About a month and a half back, I received an email from my accountant, David, regarding some tax matters that needed attention. Now, typically, I’m diligent about reviewing my to-do list and scheduling tasks in my calendar. But this particular item? It kept getting pushed back week after week because, let’s face it, it was one of those dreaded, don’t really want to do it, tasks.

But last week, I had a moment of clarity. “Enough is enough,” I told myself. “David needs this sorted, and it’s time to tackle it.” So, I blocked out some time on my calendar for today and decided to make the process as painless as possible by retreating to my balcony for a change of scenery.

And you know what? Taking that first step was key. This task I’d been dreading to do, anticipating it would take 30 to 45 minutes of my time? It turned out to be a mere three-minute phone call to David to clarify a few details. Talk about a pleasant surprise!

It brought to mind a quote from General Krulak, a retired US General, who once said, “Most recruits don’t know how to force themselves to start something hard. But if you can train them to take the first step by doing something that makes them feel in charge, it’s easier to keep going.”  To be honest he was really onto something. That initial step, however small, set the wheels in motion and made the task feel infinitely more manageable.

David and I shared a good laugh over the whole ordeal, and I couldn’t help but see the irony in my own procrastination habits. Looks like the tables have turned! Now, I can’t even tease him about the paper files on his desk without feeling a bit guilty!

So, here’s the takeaway: That task looming over you like a giant elephant? Chances are, it’s more of a harmless mouse once you dive in. Identify the first step, no matter how tiny, and take it. You might just be surprised at how much easier the rest falls into place.

So, my questions for you is this: Is there a task on your plate you’ve been procrastinating for a while? Do you have an elephant which might turn out to be a mouse? What’s the first step you can take to tackle it head-on?

This is this week’s Work Smarter: Live Better tip.

Have a lovely day and let’s stop procrastinating and start making progress, one step at a time.

A bientôt,


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