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Three Reasons Leaders Procrastinate

If you are like me, I am confronted with hundreds of good ideas and possibilities every week. Many of these good ideas don't survive long under examination and go into the waste bin, but many go into the queue as something I 'should do' (including writing this blog). That is where the mental gymnastics start for me....many things never make it from the queue to the production line. Here are some of the most frequent excuses I struggle with:

  1. Responsibility - once I start something I will feel some responsibility to myself or the team to follow through. Avoiding this is sometimes as easy as leaving the idea in the queue although I know it will leave me feeling guilty eventually.

  2. Perfectionism - self explanatory, however I apply this one selectively. I am often the first person to do something 'quick and dirty' or to tell people to not let perfect be the enemy of good. But for tasks that I feel I should be good at, I can get stuck in a polishing phase that never ends.

  3. Fear - closely related to perfectionism, I have an image of myself that I like to protect and that reacts to the possibility of something not being 'good enough'. This is a surprisingly persistent feeling despite very little supporting evidence!

Tip - Set yourself a goal just to begin, rather than something more ambitious. I can rarely find an excuse strong enough to not start something.

What are you or your team putting off today? What are causes for procrastination you have observed? What can you say "Go" to today?

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