Financial procrastination is when you have financial obligations and moves to make, but you put those decisions aside on a continuous basis. For instance – you know you need to balance your checkbook, but you continue waiting until things are going wrong. Or, you have student loans and need to apply for a deferment, but you let the time lapse and end up with challenges related to the credit bureau.
Can you overcome it? Yes.
Do you have work to do? Again, yes.
Here are a few suggestions on how to get past your procrastination:
1. Accept Where You Are
You may feel as if too many things are left undone to get past the point of no return. The key is in accepting where you are, knowing you may never be ready to tackle everything, and start from there.
“It isn’t where you came from. It’s where you are going that counts.” – Ella Fitzgerald
Take an easy, baby step. Once you get started, it is easier to keep going, and the first step is the most important when working toward making things right.
2. Time It
When you decide to take those baby steps, don’t overdo it. Give yourself time to get adjusted to figuring things out. Taking five or 10 minutes to do something simple is the first step in this transformation. Perception is everything.
Don’t shy away because you feel as if things are too far gone. Address your situation one step at a time.
3. Give Everything a Deadline
If you work well under pressure, put your financial tasks on a deadline! With a firm deadline in place, it is easier to look at the task as something that absolutely has to be done, rather than something that can be put off again and again.
4. Set Goals
Your baby steps should be tied to your goals:
- What do you need to do?
- How can it be accomplished?
- Even if it’s going to open up that new bank account, you should set a goal and a date by when it should be done.
This way, you’ll always hold yourself accountable.
5. Reward Yourself
When you tackle those financial issues, take some time to reward yourself. These rewards can be tied to your short- and long-term goals.
For instance, if you want to go see a movie, give yourself an hour to get things done before you need to leave. If you haven’t done what you were supposed to do by then, there’s no movie.
Or, decide and take steps towards completing a number of financial tasks. For every task you complete, you get to surf the net for 10 minutes, or watch part of a show on Netflix. It’s a different type of motivation, but could work in your favor.
6. Get an Accountability Partner
Having a friend or family member monitor your progress can go a long way. In turn, offer to hold them accountable with a goal of theirs. You’ll hold yourself accountable, but someone else will be holding you accountable too. A financial coach or counselor can also serve this role.
Once you establish these healthy habits when it comes to your finances, you’ll notice that the stress attached to your finances will drop substantially. When this occurs, the procrastination may also begin to dissipate.
Schedule time to talk at:
This content is developed from sources believed to be providing accurate information, and provided by Kelly Financial Planning. It may not be used for the purpose of avoiding any federal tax penalties. Please consult legal or tax professionals for specific information regarding your individual situation. The opinions expressed and material provided are for general information, and should not be considered a solicitation for the purchase or sale of any security.