Do you ever find yourself stuck in a bout of laziness? You might be laying in bed for hours on end as the day passes you by. Maybe you haven’t showered, brushed your teeth, or eaten a real meal beyond snacking on chips. Your homework might be piling up. You may have emails impatiently awaiting your responses from work. In short, you’re slacking.
It’s fair to say that from time-to-time we all experience a spell of laziness. While sometimes it’s good for the soul to drop responsibilities and do absolutely nothing, it can easily get carried away.
Pressing pause for one day on the weekend is one thing. But, allowing laziness to creep into your life and set up camp for days on end? That’s not healthy.
Here are 5 ways to combat laziness the next time you find yourself stuck in a rut:
1. Unpack why you’re feeling lazy.
Maybe you’re overwhelmed with schoolwork, assignments piling up from your boss, or in dire need of time to catch up on sleep. Or, perhaps you’re feeling lazy as an avoidance technique.
Isolate the real reason why you feel unproductive and unmotivated. If you’ve been working super hard and really just need a day to relax, then take it. We all need some R&R time.
But, if you’re feeling lazy because you’re avoiding responsibilities, call yourself out on it! Laziness is no excuse to let your chores, projects, or commitments fall to the wayside.
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2. Create small, actionable steps.
If I am feeling particularly lazy, especially on a Saturday after a long week, I let myself take the day at a slower pace. I’ll sleep in until 9:00am, work my way to the shower, and plan smaller goals for myself throughout the day.
Whether it’s a list of chores waiting for me around the house, or some errands I need to run, I negotiate with myself to make sure I get it all done, but in smaller pieces. This method might work for you, too!
Make a short list of the things you absolutely need to get done, despite how unmotivated you may feel. Organize the list in order of importance and take small steps throughout the day. Reply to one important email. Complete one small task. Do something, even if it’s just one thing on your list, so that you’re still working toward your goals, even on a day where you feel uninspired or run down.
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3. Turn off the distractions.
An hour of Netflix will not completely throw off your day, but eight hours is bound to send you in a spiral of laziness. Unless you really have no obligations, turn off the distractions.
Close out of your social media apps on your phone. Turn off the television. Put your phone on vibrate or silent mode to limit calls and texts. Quiet the environment you’re in and you’re bound to feel more focused to accomplish the task in front of you.
Nothing is more distracting than scrolling through an endless Instagram feed or binge-watching The Office for the 100th time. Minimize your distractions to put a stop to the laziness you’re feeling.
4. Set alarms for your day.
Alarms are handy to ping us when it’s time to wake up, but they’re also useful throughout the day.
Consider setting alarms on your phone for the tasks you need to accomplish during the day. For example, set an alarm at 8:00am to wake up, again at 10:00am to tackle your email inbox, and again at 1:00pm to run those errands you’ve been putting off.
Mapping out your day with alarms can prove to hold you more accountable so you don’t let the day slip by without realizing what time it is.
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5. Negotiate with yourself.
Sometimes I know I need to revel in my laziness a bit and be productive all in one day. It happens to the best of us. In order to do both, consider negotiating with yourself.
Set aside a few hours in the morning or evening for “you time” where you can spend that allotted time doing what you want to.
Read a book, write in your journal, listen to music, or binge-watch your favorite show. But, the rest of the day you need to get through the items on your to-do list. This method gives you the best of both worlds: indulging in your laziness a bit, but also seeing your responsibilities through.
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Laziness is an inevitable feeling we will all experience from time-to-time. Sometimes it’s a feeling you only endure once in a while, while other times it can plague you on the regular.
It can be really tempting to give in to this uninspired, unmotivated mindset, but in the long run you’re only prolonging reaching your goals. If you need time to rest, take it. No one can be productive on a tired, rundown brain. But if your laziness stems from avoidance, don’t give in. Combat it as best you can. These tips should help you persevere!