Procrastination, avoidance or dragging your feet: there are many names for not getting on with unpleasant jobs.  The reasons why people avoid tasks are very individual.  We often feel overwhelmed and would rather spend our time on nicer things. To tackle an unpleasant task, first you should work out why you keep procrastinating about it.  The following tips can help you actively tackle the problems and resolve the issue.

1. Preparation is everything.

Good preparation is so often the key to success. If you haven’t got all the important documents, you’ll always find an excuse for not getting on with a job. If you’re reliant on help from colleagues, it’s nothing to be embarrassed about: experienced colleagues can often help you solve it! So it’s a comparably quick and easy way to make it a more pleasant seeming task.

2. Get organised

Organised people are generally more successful. With unpleasant jobs it can be helpful to write a list and group them logically. The to-do list is a proven approach, but it only helps if you don’t keep adding more things to it, but you can actually cross off the tasks. Detailed subheadings give you smaller moments of success. So instead of ‘do paperwork’, you could put ‘read and reply to emails’, ‘create new folders’ etc. These tasks can be done quicker and so give you affirmation of your work. It’s also best to tackle unpleasant tasks without distraction.  So you should order the jobs according to their deadlines. This encourages you to focus on the work and gives you an overview of when each task must be done.

3. Prioritise your tasks

Generally your tasks should always be prioritised. This also involves deciding which tasks you will do and which you can delegate. Skilled colleagues are usually on hand to offer advice.  The ability to say ‘no’ is an undervalued quality. If you help all your colleagues, you can cause yourself difficulties by feeling that you don’t have enough time, so seemingly solvable tasks become stressful. By turning down these requests that aren’t your responsibility, you are actively helping yourself to focus on your own projects.

4. Visualise your success

Finally, you should always envisage the positive results of completing an unpleasant task. Whether it’s an increase in salary or simply relief and knowing that you got it done: you feel better when you’ve finished the task. It’s also important to reward yourself for reaching the goal:  after a stressful conversation, give yourself a little break in the form of a walk or a relaxing bath after work. These happy prospects will keep the momentum going through the unpleasant task!

These tips will help you tackle unpleasant tasks. If you have any ideas on the subject of getting jobs done, let us know and contact us at: