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4 Ways to Get over the Procrastination Hump: Show Notes & Transcript

Post | May 16, 2023

Welcome back to Marketing Smarts! From brand-building and marketing veterans Anne Candido and April Martini (that’s us) comes a podcast committed to cutting through all the confusing marketing BS so you can actually understand how to take action and change your business today. We deep-dive into topics most would gloss-over, infusing real-world examples from our combined 35+ years of corporate and agency experience. We tell it how it is so whether you are just starting out or have been in business awhile, you have the Marketing Smarts to immediately impact your business.

In this episode, we’re talking how to get over the procrastination hump. Listen to the episode on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts, and your other favorite podcast spots – follow and leave a 5-star review if you’re exercising your Marketing Smarts!

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Marketing Smarts: 4 Ways to Get over the Procrastination Hump

Procrastination is something we all struggle with…eventually. No matter how hard we try, there are still things on our list we avoid and keep pushing back. How do you get over that procrastination hump? Admit you’re procrastinating, do one thing to get the ball rolling and then do another thing, don’t start multiple things at the same time, and reward yourself for overcoming procrastination. Let’s dive in before we waste any more time. This episode covers everything from procrastination to multitasking. Here’s a small sample of what you will hear in this episode:

  • How do you get over the procrastination hump?
  • Why should you admit you’re procrastinating?
  • How do you get the ball rolling?
  • Should you multitask?
  • How should you reward yourself?
  • When is it time to outsource a task?
  • What does procrastination have to do with anxiety?
  • How did vacasa screw up April’s vacation?

And as always, if you need help in building your Marketing Smarts, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at:

Check out the episode, show notes, and transcript below:

Show Notes

What is Marketing Smarts?

From brand-building and marketing veterans Anne Candido and April Martini comes a podcast committed to cutting through all the confusing marketing BS so you can actually understand how to take action and change your business today. They deep-dive into topics most would gloss-over, infusing real-world examples from their combined 35+ years of corporate and agency experience. They tell it how it is so whether you are just starting out or have been in business awhile, you have the Marketing Smarts to immediately impact your business.

How do I exercise my Marketing Smarts?

Thanks for listening to Marketing Smarts. Get in touch here to become a savvier marketer. 


Please note: this transcript is not 100% accurate.

Anne Candido 0:02
This is Marketing Smarts – a podcast committed to helping you become a savvier marketing leader, no matter your level. In each episode, we will dive into a relevant topic or challenge that marketing leaders are currently facing. We will also give you practical tools and applications that will help you put what you learn into practice today. And if you missed anything, don’t worry, we put worksheets on our website that summarize the key points. Now, let’s get to it.

April Martini 0:29
Welcome to Marketing Smarts!

Anne Candido 0:31
I am Anne Candido.

April Martini 0:32
And I am April Martini. And today we’re gonna cover a topic that I’ve been reading a lot about lately. And that is all about how to get over the procrastination hump. Or at least that’s our interpretation today. As you all know, by now, we do like to tackle timely and relevant topics that are coming up and put our own spin on them. And this is one that’s meant to do just that. And this is not to say that procrastination is a new topic necessarily, but I do think it’s one that many of us continue to struggle with. And as someone that’s typically a tackle your list as fast as you can type. I still find myself avoiding things that either one I just don’t like to do. Or two I feel like are a waste of my time or three really, honestly are hard for me. So we’re going to try to work through this one together.

Anne Candido 1:17
Yep. And to those points, this is something that you have to stay on top of to avoid backsliding. Yep, yeah. So this is one of those episodes that we anticipate you’re going to come back to multiple times. And we’ll probably come back to it as a reminder for ourselves. It’s also good to note that we should think about the times in the past, we have procrastinated to learn what our triggers are, and to be on the lookout for them. Oh, and there’s a school of thought that procrastination leads to better work and really understand that that is the exception versus a rule. So if you feel like that somehow was working for you, I would rethink that.

April Martini 1:49
I think that’s a cop out anyway. All right. Yeah. So Oh, that’s very true. And with that, we’ll get into four ways to get over the procrastination hump. Number one, admit you have a problem or admit that you are procrastinating. So the first step toward healing as they say, is admitting you have that problem. This definitely applies here. I am the master of rationalization. When it comes to procrastination, say that three times fast, I will continue to look at an item on my list and then go and do something else. And then I’ll come back and I’ll see it again. And I’ll think about it and I’ll go and do something else. And I mentioned at the beginning of this, that there are usually things that I don’t like that are hard for me or that I feel like are a waste of my time. And because I am built from the mode of being a high performer or achievement oriented person. I’m not the type of person where procrastination comes to life in the way that I just don’t do anything. So I tell myself that when I’m doing things, I’m actually not procrastinating, I am being ultra productive. But at the same time, I think ignoring certain items that do at some point need to get done. So this is why the first step is important to look at your list. If you’re a list maker, however you keep track of the things that you need to get done. And honestly assess where you are avoiding getting started on things that actually are probably getting to a little bit of a sense of urgency at this point, if you’ve been looking at them for a while. So examples for me, our our bookkeeping used to do this for me, I would just dread closing the months, I would put it off, I would have to incent myself, which we’ll talk about later. It was really hard for me to get over that hump. Same thing with tax collection recently, the info that I needed to pull together not so much for forthright people, but for our personal taxes. We’ve had it on our list to go and close our kids bank accounts and move those funds to Merrill Lynch where they will make more money that has been on the list for I don’t know since last fall. And if I go back to my list of triggers, you can pretty easily fit them into the categories that I outlined. So telling all myself here and pulling out some specific examples of my own dirty laundry.

Anne Candido 4:02
Ironically, laundry tend to be when people procrastinate on to Yes, I mean, I think it’s really important to recognize the emotions behind why you’re procrastinating. So a lot of these things. Wow. I mean, when you could just barely say sometimes there’s more higher priority things to get done. So that’s true. But sometimes it’s just like an emotion attached to like a drudgery or like not really even wanting to go there. For me it’s usually making phone calls like yeah, I feel that too. I just don’t like making phone calls anymore. I don’t like especially if you’re calling a service and you have to go through the menu in any of the way and like oh, I know how much you love that. She’s drives me nuts. So if I’m like making an appointment or I needed to discuss something that can’t be done via email, I’ve text or by the way, email and text I love. I tend to procrastinate because I feel like it’s just going to be a waste of my time so I need a lot amount of time for it. Hmm And then I have to really like, get myself going in order to go do that. But what I tend to do in order to keep it in front of me is I put it as an all day event in my calendar. Yep. And I just keep forwarding that all day event. Until I get tired of seeing and I’m like, Okay, fine, I’m going to get this thing done. So I mean, I think the point I make is, sometimes these aren’t like, necessarily big things, or overwhelming things that you’re procrastinating on, we’re gonna get to that point in a second about some other those those things. Sometimes it’s just the small things, but they do take up a lot of mind space and energy and energy. And so sometimes, even though we’re procrastinating and doing them, it’s just better just to get them over with. Yes,

April Martini 5:40
amen to that. All right, our second point here, and four ways to get over the procrastination hump, I’m going to hand this one over to and number two is do one thing to get the ball rolling, and then do another thing.

Anne Candido 5:53
Yes, and this is actually the key for anything, anything really, right? We talk about this strategy a lot. And it seems so simple, but it can be so hard for people to do. I mean, when we talk about how to be an elephant, it’s one bite at a time, right? And so this is especially true when you have big things in the big things can be extremely daunting. And you’re just not sure how to begin and you’re not sure you are when you’re looking at what it is supposed to actually come to fruition, it feels so far away. And you’re kind of like, oh, what’s the point against those emotional things that kind of continue to come into play. And it’s hard to get yourself motivated to just at least start. But there’s something about just starting, that has such a liberating of impact on your ability to keep on going once you just actually start. So once you admit that you are going to procrastinating here, you should try to take action immediately. Like as soon as you possibly can, you can do this by starting to ask yourself, Okay, what can I do now, in order just to get this process going. Some things to keep in mind, though, just to kind of make sure that you’re not really stuck in just sitting in the overwhelm, is that you don’t have to do it all at once. Like what we said it’s baby steps, it’s about doing the next thing that you think you can do now that pushes you into that ability to make progress to feel like you are gaining some traction that you are moving towards whatever this big thing is, you don’t have to do it all yourself. This is a big one. And this is one we talk about a lot, especially in forthright women is, if it’s a drudgery, if you’re procrastinating on it, that is a really big sign that maybe you shouldn’t be the one doing it. Yep. Right, hire someone to do it like this, we deal with the bookkeeping, I do with my house cleaning. I mean, there’s a lot of these services that are out there. And sometimes it feels like Well, I’m gonna spend my hard earned money on that I’m like, well, then you’re not making money. If you’re cleaning your house, or you’re not enjoying the things you want to do. If you’re cleaning your house, what’s your trade off there, right. So just realize that your time in your efforts and your energy has value. And there’s a compensated level of money that makes sense to invest in in order to recapture some of your time and value. The other thing that you don’t have to have all the answers. And this is a big one is sometimes we just don’t know how to even get started or where to go with this. Or we don’t know what it’s going to look like. And that’s totally fine to start doing your research, listen to podcasts and network. Talk to people put it on Facebook, hey, has anybody ever done this? What’s your first thing that you did to get started? I mean, there’s lots of places to now solicit input information feedback, and start to really basically get that understanding and knowledge. I mean, Google search Google for heaven’s sakes, but some good search terms in there. But the whole big thing is like what I just said, in the very beginning of this point is to ask yourself, What can I do now, until and then just keep asking that until you get to something you can do now, then you scheduled it in, right. So this is really, really important. Because if you don’t schedule it in, then you have run the risk of then making it not a priority. And then when something easier comes along, where you’re like, Oh, I’m going to do that. And I’m going to feel good, because I can check it off my list. Oh, yeah, you tend to do that, because it makes you feel more productive. But if you start scheduling things in, then you can start to really see that you’re investing your time and things that matter. And you’re getting some progress. So I do do this with phone calls. Sometimes when I’m like, Okay, I need a call this person and like I don’t even know what the number is or you know, whatever, or the service or agency, whatever. Sometimes I’ll just Google the number and I’ll write it down. And that’s my my step something and I pat myself on the back and then I will call them the next day, right? So it’s least a step in the right direction. Me I know it’s a silly example. But sometimes you just need to do something in order to progress yourself to the final state.

April Martini 9:44
So what I’ve started doing is I’ll set the time that I’m going to go walk the dog in the morning. What I was doing is like I was patting myself on the back right I get these amount of things done and then at 9:30 we go walk or whatever it is right but What I’ve started holding myself to now to the point of this point about doing one little thing is like, if it’s 9:27, I don’t let my butt get out of that chair until 9:30, which means I have to do one of these little things, the ball rolling, but to try to build that accountability back, where I’m doing it with intention to get it started. And then I think to these points about, you know, what can you do? Or how can you get over the hump? You know, I’ll just again use the examples I gave before. So with the tax example, I assigned myself one item to collect per day until the list was complete. Yep, yeah. And I felt real good, because again, over achiever, if I got to Don, in one day, gave myself a really big gold star, the bookkeeping and said, we hired someone. And I will say that the process to offloading everything can be a process. So I mean, I understand I’m sure some of you are thinking this, I think it’s worth bringing up that you’re like, oh, man, then that’s another thing that I have to do to get rid of this thing that I don’t want to do. But I will tell you that, first of all, it’s worth the investment. And number two, having her has built so much capacity, number one in my life relief, and just feeling like there’s someone else to take care of it. I mean, I just cannot say it enough. So see ya accuracy. Yeah. There’s a lot of a lot of me waking up in the middle of the night thinking about how I may have made a mistake, anyway, different conversation. But to the point of not having to do it yourself, I think, the same way we think about like, Oh, it’s just easier for me to do, it’s just easier for me to do it. And we get into those patterns. Taking the time, even if you’re like this is gonna take me four hours to onboard them. When I thought about afterward, like I invested four hours, I was investing four times that amount of money to try to get the books, right. So just a mindset shift there. And then with the bank stuff, and transferring accounts, I actually assigned it to someone on my brother’s team. He’s our financial advisor. And I was trying to fill out the paperwork myself. And since you know, I think I can do it better, you know, get it done. And I just kept doing this loop until I finally reached out to her. And then I came to find out that my brother had used it as a case study because things hadn’t been going well. If it doesn’t work for my sister, she’ll let us know. And I did. And so now I’m, you know, one of the reasons they’re getting a new system anyway, different conversation. But that was another example where I was like, Who am I going to get to do this? For me? I’m clearly doing something wrong. I don’t have the right answers here to even begin to do it. Figure out someone else. So well, I like what you mentioned about like, the steps like it just doesn’t have to be a big thing. Yeah, it’s like using three or four minutes, like I said, to look up a phone number, or to maybe get a list of people that you want to reach out to in your next networking event, or,

Anne Candido 12:50
I mean, it’s just it can be something very small, but it’s not wasting the time and is taking advantage of the fact that you have this a little bit of extra capacity in order to do something to move yourself along. But it doesn’t have to be a big thing. It can be a very small thing. But the accumulation of small things gets to a big thing.

April Martini 13:06
Yes, exactly. And the little things get bigger, if you don’t just go ahead and do them. That’s true, too. All right, number three here, four ways to get over the procrastination home. Number three is don’t start multiple things on your procrastination list at the same time. And this might seem counter to the previous point, but hear me out. It’s not those three items I gave his examples, I tackled each of them separately. And honestly, we’re sounding like big babies in this episode. But with some time in between the items that we procrastinate, they really are most often rigged with a lot of anxiety. And there are times in life, when you have to have multiple balls in the air, right, this should not be one of them. So this is why we say you need to start one thing, and then you need to see it all the way through. And then you start another one when you have the mental capacity to do so. Because like answered with the cleaning example, we have to fill our cup in order to have the bandwidth to do the things that we procrastinate. And this might sound really silly when you think about things that are seemingly easy to get done. But it doesn’t matter what they are, it goes back to your triggers and what triggers you. We are we all have things that we procrastinate because we just don’t want to do them for whatever reason. So we’ve got to take the time to get back the relief or the joy or the mindfulness or whatever you call it so that you can be effective and productive in life overall and a contributing member of society quite frankly, if I have too many things on my list that I’m procrastinating at once I get extra anxiety. So I try to balance them and not have more than a handful relative to the rest of my list which my lists are crazy long. We’ve talked about that before, in and of themselves. And also I’m going to give you another tip here. Sometimes I have to gamify things. So I’ll say okay, setting the timer for 15 minutes. I’m going to work on this one thing and get as much done as possible and then I can check it off for two A and come back to it tomorrow or whenever Next I have the space for it. So just trying to, number one, be realistic. But number two, give yourself some space and some grace. And like Anne said, like, these can be little things that we procrastinate. But they really do put a lot of pressure on us and our systems and all those types of things. So knowing that, if you get the one thing done, even if it is like making a phone call, you don’t have to immediately jump into the next one and the next one and the next one, because I think that can have counter implications. It’s more about, alright, what can I do you and then reward myself and then or gamify or whatever, and then get back to it and get back on track? So

Anne Candido 15:42
yeah, I think that’s a really good point. Because I think what it comes down to is managing your focus, yeah, managing your energy, like a better set. Yes, right. And that is really important, because sometimes we get very ambitious and we want to start a bunch of big things all at once. And then we find ourselves not really doing well on either one of them, because we’re feeling very stretched. Yeah. And so I’m gonna give a couple of different examples from the other side of that coin, where I think we hear a lot. And this is not usually in these terms, but I think it’s an applies. So a lot of times, for example, when we have new moms, and they’re still hot and heavy in their careers, there’s this, I would say, a mindset of like, I’m gonna focus on being a mom, and then I’m kind of procrastinating on my career a little bit, right. And so you kind of take your focus off of your career now, that is totally fine to in your focus should be on being a new mom, there is definitely that’s the right choice. But what we have been trying to start to get these these new moms to see or even if you have like young kids, and it’s the same situation where they still drain a lot of your time and energy is that you can quit your career a little bit on automated mode, and not procrastinate on your career in the meantime. So sometimes that looks like being intentional on how you’re going to plan some things out. So maybe it’s like, Okay, I’m going to set a training session. And I know, I’m going to have to schedule around this because it’s going to be a lot of effort in order to make my world my new world work around it. But I am going to commit to this, or starting to set timings and deadlines at appropriate places, and sharing that with management and leadership. And it’s not, you know, the, when I have enough time, I’m going to do this or when I eat because there’s never enough time. But it’s like, okay, in a year I this is where I want to be. And then maybe before you had a kid, it was six months. But now it’s at a year, yep. But you just start kind of resetting the timelines, so that people can still get in their mindset that you are serious about your career, you still need the project progression, you still need the exposure, you still need all these things. Now you might be doing at a slightly slower pace. So that’s intentional procrastination to some extent. But you’re not just disregarding that part of your life. And then hoping to pick it back up when you feel like you have quote, unquote, enough time with your kids. Because I can tell you, it progresses to a different stage of life with your kids, I have never been at a point and my youngest now is 15 and a half where I’m like, Oh, I finally have all my time back. I can do all those things I’ve been wanting to go do right. And so I would just be mindful of that. And actually even mean, they’d be this as being a little counter to the point but intentionally setting your procrastination up in a way that continues to have it work for you. I don’t know if that makes any sense. But then people probably saying I don’t know what the heck she’s saying. But anyway, makes sense in my mind. The other thing that I would say is like, if you’re going to start something really, really big, make sure that your focus is or you’re allowing enough time to focus on a really, really big thing. So for example, me and my husband started real estate several years ago, a really big thing, no idea about anything, we obviously bond our own houses, but I mean, how do you even like, do all that. And so obviously, you have to get we got training for it, but then becomes this list of things. But then Melissa thinks could be starting to be checked off based on this exact process of taking things like one step at a time. And just doing the next thing. So for example, like if to set up an LLC, okay, I can do that. And I can do that one day. All right, okay, now we need to have a bank account. Okay, I can do that the next day, but as taking these things down and pieces, but if we had tried to do another big thing, in addition to the real estate, it would have been a really hard time because the energy to be able to do those and do those things well and do them at a pace that feels like traction would have been significantly compromised. So I think that point I’ve kind of brought in a couple of other things and maybe April, you can tell me if any of that made sense or not. But I wanted to kind of share some of the different angles of procrastination.

April Martini 19:58
Well, you I mean, I think a couple of things you said there through the examples in the discussion so far one thing is having the space to have the focus, right? Because I think like you just said, you know, we’re entering a big next thing, we have to be realistic with ourselves that we are going to be able to put the right focus on it. Because I think if you don’t have that, then it’s almost like you’re self sabotaging from the very beginning, right? And so you’re taking on this huge thing. But there’s no way that you’re going to be able to do all the things that need to happen associated with it. So I think that’s about being mindful and truthful and thinking about the big picture things. And then also, I think, to the self sabotage point. So I’ll throw one more example in here. When I decide that I’m going to do something I want it done now. And so this gets me into a lot of trouble. So for example, me too, we are painting right now. Okay. I have learned a few big things about moving. And you know, I’ll continue, I guess the real estate thing, from a personal standpoint, I have to live in the space for a year before I actually have a good feel for what I want for the space. So I’ve set that for myself. So when I get overwhelmed, or I’m like, Oh, I wanted to feel more like this or do more than that. I’m like, it’s not been a year yet you need to calm down, slow your roll and go do something else instead, right? Well, now we’re at the point where I started to feel comfortable with the painting, I am notorious for picking out for going once the store, picking out stack of paint chips, coming back, picking 20 of them, getting samples of all of them and painting them all over my walls and all the spaces and all the rooms and trying to decide that way. This time, I told myself to our point of this episode. All right, you’re going to start and you’re going to paint three things. One is in there on the first floor, because this is where I have the best view because it’s where I spend most of my time, right? One is going to be on either side of the fireplace where we need some feature, one’s going to be a cutout that naturally needs a color because it you know, as a feature space, and one’s going to be that one of the walls in your office. That’s it. We’re not focusing on any other rooms and any other floors. And we’re not putting paint anywhere else in this house. That was number one. Number two was you are limited to six paint samples. So if you have to go get the paint chips and come back and you don’t think that any of them are exactly or you can’t get to six, right? Maybe you need to go get more paint chips. And so I built out like my gates were really tangible tactical things, but also knowing myself and working against myself. And then to the point of having someone else do it. I listened to Brice, he wanted hunter green, it was the wrong choice. We both decided. So guess what the next day he went and bought the gallons of paint we’re actually going to use. But it’s like, it’s basically like to your point of I know what happens to me when I decide to take on these projects. So I have to manage my expectations. And then avoid procrastination. Because what would happen in those other instances is we would live with 20 different colors of gray on a wall for six weeks, because I was so mad at myself that I would procrastinate to the next deliverable until I could renew my energy and get back to it.

Anne Candido 23:05
So it really establishes the need for mini goals. Right? Yes, but I think it’s great that you recognize where you’re getting in your own way. Yes, because that can happen a lot to where we make the whatever it is so big and so huge that we’re like, Ah, I just can’t even like get the whole energy up to even approach them. But when you can set it into mini goals, it’s like okay, we’re gonna do three spaces. All of a sudden, it feels a little bit more obtainable. So then the procrastination doesn’t feel like this big monumental Wait, that’s been like not a bestowed on you that you have to paint the whole entire house and said, it’s like, oh, I can I can do three spaces. And then the next time it’s another three spaces, and then so you start to break it apart, which actually probably gets the job done faster than to try to take on the whole thing all at once when

April Martini 23:54
it’s more enjoyable to because the really messed up thing about all of this is I like to paint walls. I mean, I went to art school I love I love the smell of the paint. I even like when it’s like on my hands like I love to paint walls, I’m I can no longer paint, like actual things because my skills have deteriorated so much. But painting a wall was like I can do that. But I would get myself to the point where I’d be so rattled, I’d be like, just another thing, I got to paint the stupid wall. Whereas actually, when we aligned on the paint, and I did three, the three little nook spaces. I didn’t set time constraints. I knew generally how long it was going to take. I don’t like taping it off. That’s a whole other thing. But like when I was painting, I was like in my zone. I was listening to my book, I was relaxed. I was enjoying it. I mean, so that’s the other side of the whole thing is like you could really mess up things that you actually enjoy by putting too much pressure on the system.

Anne Candido 24:48
I think that’s a great point. All right, I’ll

April Martini 24:50
get off my soapbox now. All right, number four and four ways to get over the procrastination how to reward yourself for overcoming procrastination and I did preempt this a little bit. I’ll hand this one And and

Anne Candido 25:00
I mean, I think that’s, that’s totally right on. And I think if you do it right, as you mentioned, April, the actual thing that you’re doing could be the reward in itself, to some extent, right. So painting if it’s enjoyable to you, as long as you don’t put all that pressure on, you could be an enjoyable thing that you’ve been procrastinating because you’re putting all that pressure on, because you feel like it to do way too much. But when you pare it back into something that feels very approachable, tangible, something you can do in a weekend, you know, that you could actually start seeing the prep the progress, then it starts to take on a different mindspace in your head. But it’s also about then, acknowledging and celebrating and rewarding yourself for the fact that you did do it. Right. So I mean, we talk about all the time, you know, after we have a big event, or even after we’re going to, well, after we going to tape these episodes, we go have a glass of wine, yeah, we want ourselves for having that. And, you know, in the trick to actually getting these done, because our base, like how do you do this ongoing, we schedule it, I mean, so again, when you schedule it, you follow through on it, and you reward yourself, it starts to be kind of came in this fortuitous cycle that you start to appreciate and enjoy. And it starts to make you feel really good about what you’re being able to accomplish. So that you definitely need to do. Now also there is times when we put things out there and we don’t get them done, right, we we over exaggerate what we think we can do in a time period, or we we don’t actually, somebody comes up or you know, we have an excuse for why we didn’t get it done. That’s fine to just give yourself a little bit of grace, I mean, reschedule it, it’s not all or nothing. It’s not like, Oh, I didn’t do this. So therefore the whole thing falls apart, rescheduled for the next day, I just told you, I kind of continue to push it out. Like the phone calls I need to make on my calendar until I get so tired of seeing it that I actually do it. Find those little things like April said that also that like work for you in order to really get through it and my reward, and that one is I get to take it off my list. Yeah. Because I love to cross things off. I love to delete things from my list. Now sometimes like April said, like, you know, you can combine these two, like if she enjoys painting, she’s listening to her bark on you know, so that she gives a little motivation of, you know, I get to listen to my book, I get to enjoy that time. And as well as getting something done that’s productive. I do that all the time. Sometimes I go to Starbucks, like personal things I’ve been putting off and like I really need to kind of chunk this out. And sometimes just can’t get into the mind space at home, I’ll just go to Starbucks and join my Starbucks. While I’m doing this. I told you guys, this is how I reward myself for things like working out. I get a Starbucks after every workout, right? So working out is a big thing. People procrastinate on set a little reward for yourself in order to actually motivate yourself to do it for one thing, but then you’ll find in the process of motivating yourself to do it, it starts with becoming part of your life. But sometimes you need a little reward just to kind of put it in and steal it as a habit into start to kind of change the format and structure of your day to day activities.

April Martini 28:02
Well, I think the as you were talking, I was thinking there is kind of a counterpoint to this point, which is, don’t just suffer through it, if there’s a better way that you can be doing it. Right. So I’m like you, I’m a big fan of, if I feel like I’m dreading whatever is coming up, if I can find a place where I find a space where I find joy to go and do it, then that’s what I do. Right? And then it eases me into it more. And it’s not still not something I want to be doing. But it is more, I’m more apt to be like, Okay, I can do this because I’m in a better headspace and a better physical space and a better you know, whatever that looks like to be able to go and do it. I think a lot of times we think I have to punish myself for procrastinating. So then we make the actual thing even harder for ourselves instead of doing the opposite. And I’ll give another example of a recent one for us, which, you know, maybe I need some therapy, I feel like my thing is I chunk off these big things that I get now when I don’t get them done. I’m sure there’s something underneath there. Anyway. But one of the things recently that has been a pain point for me is we just moved into this house a little over a year ago. And the amount of clutter I just found myself in was like really having like a physical pressure, I could feel it on me, right? I’d be sitting in a room and I’d be like, Oh, that cabinet door started open, which means there’s a whole bunch of shit behind there that needs to be dealt with, right? And it became really, really overwhelming. When you have kids, my kids ages, the amount of little tiny things that they come home with is just like complete and total overwhelm, right. So I was like, alright, what are we going to do about this? I already said the first floor is where we collectively spend the most time and if people are here, the first floor is where we tend to hang out. So I was like, alright, what is the thing on the first floor that is making me the most crazy and we have these builtins on either side of our mantel. And at one point in time they were so Post only house on one side craft stuff and on the other side outdoor stuff, because on the one side our outdoor spaces right there. Well, they became the catch all for everything. Okay, why was that happening? So my first thing was we pulled every single thing out everything. So then it had to be dealt with right it was all over the floor. And so I did some myself. And then I went for a run and I assigned the rest of operation the kids and when I came back, it was at least like piled out, right. And so we’re like, Alright, again, these cabinets are for bubbles, balloons, squirt guns, all the outdoor stuff. And these are for the art supplies. Nothing else lives on this floor anymore. So if they were toys, and cars and trucks and Barbies, and whatever, that all immediately went downstairs. was downstairs organized, is it still as we sit here in our studio? No. But that was not the objective, right? And then anything else that was like, Mia’s fake makeup, baby dolls, stuffies, blankets, all of that went up. And I was like, those things do not live on this floor anymore. And so then for me, it was like, Alright, how am I going to keep this because that’s the other side of this type of thing, right? The reason we ended up procrastinating and I ended up in this space is because we just kept letting it continue to pile pile pile until it exploded. And so now the rule is that we do a sweep of the first floor before the kids go to bed. Anything that belongs to them needs to either go in the cabinets, if it’s on the first floor, be taken down stairs, if it’s something that belongs there, or put on the stairs, if it goes upstairs to go up to their bedroom. And I have stated If I find any more of your crap, especially in mom’s places, like her decorative bowls, and whatever it’s just gonna get poured into the trash is everyday perfect. Of course, it’s not. It’s not ever going to be a perfect system, do I find myself with far less than I need to pick up at the end of the day and be stressed about? Yes. And those cabinets while they’re not as beautifully organized as they were a month and a half ago, when we underwent this, we still only have craft stuff there. So my point on this whole thing is, you know, we had to create that process, and I had my reward for myself, like Dan was saying, it’s not necessarily like I’m gonna get this thing, it’s that at the end of the day, I have like a solid 20 to 30 minutes that I didn’t have before where I was picking up all the crap to try to make myself comfortable enough to go watch my show where I didn’t have to see it. I have been given the gift of that time. So that’s my reward.

Anne Candido 32:28
No, I love that. And I think that works very well in the work environment to when you have these big daunting tasks or objectives that you’re not exactly sure how to tackle. And the one thing that you said I think resonates here too, is prioritization based on what’s the most urgent based on what’s going to give you the best return based on what’s going to appease the whatever emotion is going on at the time. It doesn’t need to be everything underneath the sun. And a lot of times people will get in their heads like that, because where it’s like, oh, well, then I’m just moving the problem. Yep, to a different place. Well, that might be okay, that that that might be a different problem for a different day, which are crinoids says that’s a Monday problem. That’s a Friday problem. So you’re kind of dealing with things that are matter. And the moment in order to bring that relief. And this is a lot of times in business. And this is why people procrastinate and getting work done is because it’s not in those chunks, where you can see the immediate impact that’s going to generate that satisfaction from doing the job. So if you’re finding that your team is procrastinating a lot, take a look at what you’ve asked them to do and see if you can break it down into more manageable pieces. So that they can see oh, if I get this done, I’m rewarded not only personally by being able to feel accomplished, but maybe there is another reward in there of, you know, team lunch, or a bonus or whatever that looks like in order to progress that work. And then, you know, obviously, the big objective is and our big goal was always in mind, which is like eventually as decluttering the whole entire house. Yeah, but that’s not going to happen in a day. But even though we’re going to try to do it, right. Our achiever mindset of us is like, oh, yeah, of course I can get this done in a day, right? What do they always say? You You underestimate what you can do in like five years, but you overestimate we can do in a day. Yes. Yeah. So that is the mindset for which we need to work on. So I think that’s really good. And then another thing that I do in order to kind of reward myself but also just to kind of manage the whole thing of these big tasks Am I Am I procrastinate on is like my phone has become my personal computer that I carry around with me. I’ve gotten really, really good at being able to do some of these things on my phone. And normally I would wait until a later point in time till I had access to my computer or whatnot. Now, that means setting yourself up for success on your phone, which means I have access to all the Google Drive, right? I can work on a Google Doc on my phone, I can work on it on my computer, I can work I mean so when I have 10 minutes while I’m waiting for a dog After I can, like, oh, I can just get 10 minutes of this done and feel like I’m making some level of progress there. My reward is I don’t have to do it, then when I get home, right, because that’s part of my allotted time that I’ve I’ve allotted in order to do this work. So make these things work for you, you could, you’re gonna find that a lot of these things that you were waiting to do at some other later time can be done immediately. If you’re smarter about how you use your devices, and other things in order to get them accomplished. Every single website now generally has been optimized for mobile. So even ordering tickets, I’m all my delta, like my flights I now do on my phone, right? I’m looking on the computer. So yours might be looking different. But leverage your phone like it’s a personal computer that you’re carrying around with you not just something that you’re scrolling on social and doing texting on and checking your emails that will help you try to manage your day in a more productive way. I think yeah,

April Martini 35:56
well, I think it goes to like when you have these weird amounts of time, you’re like, What am I supposed to do with this? So you default to doing non productive things and unproductive things? Yeah, where then, and I had this the other day. And I mean, you know, I like to have my computer in front of me. But I’ve started to try to take more of this approach. Like, we haven’t to be 10 minutes early for baseball. And the kids wanted to get out and play and nobody was there yet. And I was like, Oh, I could send those half a dozen reminder emails right now from my phone, versus it weighing on my mind for the next three hours until I got back to my computer. Exactly. And that comes for me from a place of perfectionism. And like, what would happen so much faster here. And it’s like, everything doesn’t have to be optimized all the time. Sometimes you can put things into spaces where you would have been annoyed that you wasted the time, then you’re annoyed that you have to go do it later. If you can think more about what could I actually be doing? That’s productive, right? Yeah, absolutely. All right. So our next segment is a brand that is or is not living into their marketing smarts based on our experiences, and I’m sad to say this one does not. So I’m gonna put vacasa on blast here, one of those for those of you who are not familiar, various brands that have popped up in the era of airbnb and Vrbo. And you know, or one of those rental type companies. In this case, I had actually booked through Vrbo without knowing that it was vacasa. And we have had, okay, experiences with vacasa in the past, however, so we were on our last day of vacation, which I think only added insult to injury in this case. And I got an alert that our property for Michigan for this July, had been canceled. Now, the immediate problem with that was, it’s an extraordinarily busy area in the month of July. And we went for the first time last July, and then immediately booked because the property we got was man, and we knew that we had booked last minute, but we were so happy with being there. And it’s the new buffalo kind of area that we wanted to book right away. So we did. So we booked this the day we got back from vacation, July 22. All right, we’re now in April 2023. And I get this cancellation. I’m like, You got to be kidding me. Now, is it vacasa’s fault, quote unquote, well, the owners of the property decided to no longer rent period, the end, so I’m sure that happens, and whatever. So the first communication actually was quite good. The woman that communicated to me was proactive. She had said, All right, you know, we’re really sorry, first of all, and then we can either give you a credit back of the whole amount, we can give you 110% credit with vacasa. And also I have looked for the same days and found a property that I think would work for you. And I’m holding it for you. So in theory, okay. All right, good. And so I click on the property, and it allows one dog and one of our criteria had been to because both my sister and her dog is going. And the second thing was we had selected walking distance to the beach, and this was not. So I wrote back within the timeframe, I received that email within 15-20 minutes I wrote back, this one’s not going to work. What do we need to do? You know, we want the same date, same area whenever, then I come to find out that they don’t actually assign you a single customer service person, which I think is that massive mix. They all use the same email address. So hours later, the next person wrote me back and said, sorry, I did another search. There are no other available properties. During that time. You can either move location or move dates, otherwise, I can’t help you was the gist of it. You can imagine how that went over. Not so well. So I wrote back and I said you got to be kidding me. That’s it. After the fact that we booked this a year ago and you know, your first communication was actually relatively helpful. Now you’re telling me that all you can do is I moved my dates or I moved my location. This shouldn’t be my problem, right? I said okay, fine. refund me immediately. We will never rent from you again and I will be writing a negative review on Facebook. Okay, you’ll be refunded within this money. days. So then I took to social. And I wrote a review on Facebook about how disappointed I was. And we got on the plane, we flew home, we went to bed I woke up the next morning, there was a quote unquote, reply. But by the time I went to see it, they had removed my comment from vacasa. Oh, geez, yeah. So to make this not a complete complaining session, what I think the breakdown was is, this is a highly competitive space, there are lots of different companies that you can choose to rent from number one. Number two, we were picking a space, that was a pretty premium space. Number three, they don’t have their customer service figured out whatsoever, given the types of people that they want to have renting from them, especially given like the tear of what we were trying to rent, right. And so now I’m on here talking about this, I will never rent from them again. And you can better believe that I’m telling everybody this. And I just think that, a place like that it should be the opposite, right? They are a pretty large one we’ve rented from Bokassa and various parts of the country, they should have the resources and they should be ready to go. Because like I said, I’m sure this stuff happens all the time, there should be a protocol in place a customer service process that says, Okay, this happened, we need to make this as painless for the person as possible, we want them to stick with us. And the steps need to be put in place to the point of things like, you know, we’ve talked about in this episode of kind of putting those things in place for yourself, the company needs that and they’re totally lacking it. And there’s some little misses, like assigning you one person and there was some big misses, like telling me that I have to reschedule my time. I just think it’s it’s a completely broken process. And I’m like, Man, you better watch out because like I said, there’s so many of them out there. And then I worry about the Airbnbs and the verbose of the world, who are not necessarily what they were before, which is I one off person own this property. Now they’re partnering with others, which waters down that experience as well. So the cancellation didn’t even come through verbal, it came through a casa. And I didn’t even realize that I had booked it through them. So anyway, I’m like, putting it on alert and putting it on blast, of course, but more just to say like, oh, man, really bad customer service. really missed opportunity here.

Anne Candido 42:20
Yeah, and not to mention removing your comment from Facebook, which is just real bad, real bad. Like, you know, and I will say, it’s really hard not to go do that if you’re a business. But there’s nothing worse if you are trying to maintain an authentic presence with people than to remove their comments from your social channels, because it just creates a lot of animosity and a lot of questionable, shall we say ethics really? Yeah. Ethics about how you operate your business, which if April wanted to, she could probably investigate that a whole lot further and cause a lot more issues for that because I don’t have the time right now. Exactly. But so as you say, you’re procrastinating on doing that.

April Martini 43:12
I did write it on my list. I think this is more a question of where do I want to put my boy at a time in injury which is very appropriate. So anyway, all right. So just to recap four ways to get over the procrastination hump number one, admit that you are procrastinating anxiety builds when we avoid and the challenges seem to get bigger and bigger. So pausing and admitting is the first step. Number two, do one thing to get the ball rolling and then do another thing, break the challenge or deliverable down into digestible chunks, and then set the schedule to build momentum. Number three, don’t start multiple things on your procrastination list at the same time, we avoid things we don’t like doing so trying to tackle all of them at once is a recipe for disaster. And finally, number four reward yourself for overcoming procrastination. Give yourself something to look forward to that is more than just being finished and reward more than once if the project or timeline is long or daunting. And with that, we will say go and exercise your Marketing Smarts! Still need help in growing your Marketing Smarts? Contact us through our website: We can help you become a savvier marketer through coaching or training you and your team or doing the work on your behalf. Please also help us grow the podcast by rating and reviewing on your player of choice and sharing with at least one person. Now, go show off your Marketing Smarts!