Do you procrastinate too much? Are you waiting for your “big break” to take the next (or first) step towards your big goal? If so, then it’s time to get rid of procrastination once and for all. I’ll share how in this episode.
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How to Stop Procrastinating Once and For All
One of the biggest things that hold people back in affiliate marketing or running an affiliate program, just online business in general. Especially if you’re working from home, you don’t wanna have people looking over your shoulder.
Maybe you’re a solopreneur and entrepreneur. You’re like me, you have a virtual team and I’m the business owner. It’s like the line from the song, ‘Hardly Working From Home’ by Tripp and Tyler, it says you try getting something done when you can do anything, it’s hard.
One of the biggest things that hold people back is procrastination. The irony of this episode is that I procrastinated in recording it. I am recording it on a Wednesday. I normally record podcasts on Mondays. I had it on my list. I actually am going to record this and two other episodes today.
I had it on my list on Monday and then some stuff came up and I was like, oh, I should do this, and I should do that. I did things that quite frankly, weren’t as important as we’re recording this episode because the reality is based on when I’m recording this, we have a whole schedule.
If I don’t get this thing recorded by tomorrow, tomorrow at the latest, then it’s not going to release in time without having to make other people on our team have to put in a little bit of extra work.
The reality is I procrastinated. As I’m standing here recording this right now, I realized I’m like the hypocrite of the worst kind. I’m doing this episode about procrastination. I’m talking about a topic and then I’m applying the principles that I talk about. I’ll just be the first one to admit that, taking my own advice as much harder than giving it.
So real quick, before we jump into the meat of today, I’m going to procrastinate for another minute. I just want to share a quick, rating and review that was left by Jen Riday recently in iTunes, apple podcasts, I guess it’s called now.
He says “I love Matt’s tips for affiliate marketing. It’s not something I’ve ventured into before, but I’m feeling pretty confident now and I’m excited to give it a try! :)”
That’s what we’re looking to do at this podcast. I’m just looking to introduce people to whether it be an affiliate, marketing, affiliate programs, or in this case, we’re talking about procrastination in terms of online business. For those of you who struggle with this. None of the tips tricks and all that stuff that I could teach you to matter if you don’t master this, they don’t matter if you don’t master this.
Speaking of procrastinating, if you haven’t left a rating and review, could you not procrastinate? Could you just take 45 seconds, maybe a minute right now, if you’re listening to this in the car, just make a mental note? When you stop, just leave a quick rating and review. It helps more people like Jen, find the podcast, discover us, and get these messages.
So if you think we deserve five stars, give us five stars and just type a few words. It doesn’t have to be like a book. That’s one thing talk about like people think it has to be perfect.
I got to write the perfect. I got to write a review that’s so well thought out that people think fricking Shakespeare wrote it. No. Just real quickly say what it’s done for you. Write three sentences. That’s good enough.
Speaking of procrastination, let’s start at the beginning because that’s a good place to start. Reminds me of my favorite comedian, Mitch Hedberg passed away a long time, like 15 years ago or something.
I saw a commercial for a boxing match. It said it’s a fight to the finish. That’s a good place to end. Starting at the beginning is a good place to start. I was reading this book recently by a pastor named Tony Evans. He writes in this book about a frequent experience in his life.
He’s got millions of radio listeners, millions of television viewers. These young pastors will come up to him and want to know the quote-unquote, secret to his success. They want to know what’s the secret sauce. How do you get millions of viewers and listeners?
He replies and says, well, when’s the last time you minister to a small group of teenage boys. When’s the last time you spoke at a prison? When’s the last time you spoke to a group of five or 10 people. As you can imagine, people don’t like those questions in response. They want to know the secret sauce,
They want to know what’s the one thing or the three steps or the seven steps, the 10 things I can do that are going to get me to where you are by next week. They want to know the secret sauce. They don’t want to be confronted with reality, but the reality is that Tony Evans spent years speaking to individuals, one person at a time, small groups before he was reaching millions.
There’s a quote in the book your religious beliefs you may or may not believe in god, you could replace that with the universe or I’ll give you a few different versions of this quote.
He says,…if you aren’t willing to start at the beginning and be responsible where you are, then how do you expect God to give you more?. So if you’re not willing to start at the beginning and be responsible where you are, how do you expect to get more? How do you expect the universe to give you more or whatever?
The religious part of that is not the point here. How do you expect more if you’re not willing to start at the beginning if you’re not willing to speak to a crowd of 10?
Jon Acuff talks about Nebraska. He talks about when he went to work years ago for Dave Ramsey.
Dave Ramsey was going to speak at arenas, full 10,000 people. I’ve been to a Dave Ramsey event. There are about 12,000 people there it’s pretty big.
He was getting sent to a church in Nebraska that was a small town, rural church had like 37 people, 50 people in the audience. When he realized his Nebraska moment was preparing him to speak in front of 10,000 people, because the reality was he wasn’t ready to speak in front of 10,000 people.
But if he didn’t start at the beginning, if he wasn’t responsible for where he was with that small church in Nebraska, how could he ever expect to speak in front of 10,000 people. To put it differently, how could you possibly expect to be able to handle speaking to millions like Tony Evans when you’ve never spoken to one or tens or hundreds.
Ultimately procrastination comes down to making excuses. One of my favorite excuses I did this the other day, I’m as guilty as anybody. I’m working on it. I’m discovering through this lesson that I’m sharing with you today. I’m discovering how to put this behind me. I have not mastered procrastination. I’m pretty darn good at avoiding it.
I go weeks at a time without procrastinating on 99% of the stuff. This happened just actually it was Monday, the stuff that I got stuck on a project and some things happened. I typically like to work out from about 10:45 to 12,
That’s my workout time I get up and do a lot of work in the morning and I take a break and the kids come down and we work out together. It’s an hour and 15 minutes. I had something like one o’clock, I really needed to be done by 12. So I could go eat a quick lunch, get ready, and kind of get things set up. I had a summit interview at one o’clock.
Basically, if I don’t finish my workout by like 12:05, it ain’t happening. I have to be done at 12:05 while I look up and it’s 11:05.
I remember this by the time I go up and put my contacts in, I don’t like to work out my glasses and get all sweaty so I put my contacts in and put my shoes on grab the kids, by the time I finished this it’s going to be like 11:15. I have to be done by 12:05 at least I’m only going to get in a 15-minute workout. It’s twenty-five minutes short workout, that’s 33% shorter than normal. And I’m like, why are you going to do it? What’s the point? Let me just keep working. Do these things, there’s no point, right? Because it’s not everything I can. And I’m like, wait a minute. Why would I do that? What is stupid logic that, oh, I can’t work out for the full hour, so don’t do a 15-minute workout?
I was just like, take shorter rests between sets, move from exercise to exercise quicker. If I need to, instead of working out two body parts, only workout one body part, then I don’t have to even do the thing, but like with the shorter rest. I mean, I was just like, oh my gosh, what a stupid line of thinking. So what I did was I did exactly what I just, I went shorter between sets. I did more of a kind of a circuit training type thing. And it was a great workout. It was only 48 minutes long, you know. Now the next day I went back to my normal routine and that was great, but that’s procrastination, right?
There’ve been days. I remember I wrote an ebook. This is like 10 years ago or something called the Five-minute Workout. It was basically, I wrote it because there were, there were times and I still use this actually it’s 10 minutes. Now I do a quick 10-minute workout. First thing in the morning,
I do a series of its now 20 exercises. I do 20 exercises that take about eight to 10 minutes that just get my blood flowing. But the premise of this came from, I’ve got one of those days, I’m traveling, I’m in an event. I can’t go do a full workout, but I can do five to 10 minutes. I can get my blood flowing. I can jumpstart my day.
The thing is procrastination is we make excuses. We make excuses. Why we should check Facebook instead of writing the business proposal, I just wrote a book proposal. Right? I’m gonna tell you right now, writing the book was amazing. I loved it. You couldn’t pull me away. There were days where I was like, oh, I want to keep writing. I want to write 10,000 words today, but I only have time to write about a thousand, but the book proposal? After 20 minutes, I want to be done. This is so boring and stupid.
I hated writing the book proposal, loved writing the book because the book proposal is basically me trying to tell publishers why they need to pick this book. It’s just not my jam. We make excuses. Why we should just five more minutes of reading the news. When you know that you could do five minutes instead of checking the news five minutes, you could do 20 burpees and some jumping jacks and a few pushups or something, we got to spend an hour working on something that’s neither urgent nor important.
If you know the Eisenhower matrix, right. Where it’s urgent and important urgent and not important, important, but not urgent, then neither urgent nor important,
We’ll spend an hour working on something. It feels productive, but we have a project due tomorrow. That’s procrastination. When you think about these excuses, they seem ridiculous even though you might make them often, you know, they aren’t productive, but what about the excuses you make for procrastination?
Because you want more. Right? One of the things I did was like, I’m going to procrastinate, really keeping our lawn and our property super nice. Because we’re going to be moving in a few years anyway, to a nicer house and a nicer property. The problem with that is then when you go to sell the house, it kind of looks like a dump and you got to spend $15,000 to get it to look nice.
I could have spent an hour extra every weekend making it look good, I could have hired somebody for 50 bucks. I could have spent 50 bucks every other week. I don’t know what the math is on that, but about a thousand dollars over the course of four years. So instead of spending $15,000, I could have spent $4,000.
When you think about that, it’s so illogical. You don’t bother to get up 30 minutes earlier to work on your side business because it’s only 30 minutes. 30 minutes on my side business that’s not going to do anything. I’m tired. My business. Isn’t growing that much anyway, I’m going to put that off until I have more money, more connections.
We want more, we want something better. We know there’s something better. So we procrastinate doing the thing that needs to be done now. The answer to all of this is to stop making excuses for why you don’t start, stop belittling where you are today, and work with what you got and go, create opportunities.
When Tony Evans, going back to him, when he was just getting started as a preacher, he could have come up with a thousand excuses why he wouldn’t preach. He had no experience, no training. He did not have the experience. So how can I speak? How can I preach? He had no church. Nobody wanted him to speak. He did not have an audience. He wouldn’t be paid. No one had asked him to do so. Just think about that, I don’t have any experience. I don’t even know what I’m doing. I’m not, I’m probably not even very good at it. I don’t have an audience.
I’m not going to get paid to do it and no one is actually demanding me. I am not in demand. Those are four great excuses right there. If anybody would be justified for not doing the thing they were called to do, it would be him, but he didn’t wait. He preached at bus stops.
Every Friday, he went out and preached at bus stops and he wrote in his book, he said there was no honorarium. So odd times when preachers would go around to churches and the church would pay him 400 or $500. I don’t know how much they pay him. Then maybe like a hundred bucks or they pay him something. So it kind of covers their time and expenses. So there was no pay half the time. No one even looked at me, no audience, but based on where I was at that point in my life, that was the best congregation I could locate.
Churches weren’t inviting me to come to preach to them yet. God had called me to preach. I wasn’t about to wait for a church to invite me. I had to go create one.
Think about that based on where he was at that point in life, he said that was the best he could do. He had been called to do something. He felt a calling by God or by whatever for you, nobody’s inviting him. So he just went and created an audience.
Here’s the thing, if Tony Evans hadn’t preached on Fridays and bus stops in Atlanta when no one was paying any attention, he wouldn’t be speaking to millions today. He created opportunities. That’s what I’m asking you to create opportunities. He didn’t wait for the perfect opportunity, He didn’t wait for the situation to improve. He didn’t make any excuses. Why it wouldn’t work.
He didn’t wait for an invitation. You don’t wait for anything. He did what he was called to do without hesitation. So think about that. If he had waited for the perfect opportunity, when is the perfect opportunity to come? If you’re an aspiring preacher, for example, you think you’re just going to start getting letters from churches saying, ‘Dear Mr. Evans, would you please come to speak? Would you please share your thoughts? You’re such an expert on, this book of the Bible and we know nobody knows that.’ They’re not coming to you. If you build it, he will come is terrible advice for marketing. I love the movie Field of Dreams and love the field of dreams game that happened recently. But that’s terrible advice for marketing. If you build it, they ain’t coming. You going to go get them. You got to go capture their attention, which we talked about in another episode.
“Until you have that mindset that you were going to do what you’re called to do without hesitation, you are not going to wait for the perfect opportunity.”
You’re not going to wait for the situation to improve, you’re not gonna make excuses, you’re not going to wait for an invitation, you’re going to create opportunities until you have that mindset, you will continue to procrastinate guaranteed. You’re going to continue to keep doing it. You’re gonna keep making the same mistake over and over.
You’re going to keep looking at your to-do list, your planner, whatever and it’s going to have the same things on there that were on there the day before. That’s okay if it happens now and again. If you look through my planner about once every, I don’t know, two to four weeks, maybe one and a half times a month, you will look at Friday and it will look almost identical to Thursday as far as my to-do lists. Why? Because something came up on Thursday. You know, we got a flat tire the other day. So I got half of what I expected to get done on Tuesday. I had to go take the car in to get the tire, done.
Between getting over there, stopping my work, getting over there, waiting on that, coming back, it was a two and a half-hour process. Well, of course, I didn’t do that. When I had a call scheduled, I did it right when I was planning on doing some of my writing and recording so, yeah, I mean, those things happen.
But if you were consistently moving things from Wednesday to Thursday and Thursday to Friday and Friday to Monday, that’s procrastination till you have that mindset until you decide once. And for all that, you will do what you are called to do without hesitation. Every tool, every trick, every app, every book, every course, every podcast episode in the world will not help you stop procrastinating, anything.
This is episode 448 I think. The 430 episodes where I shared affiliate marketing tactics and how to run an affiliate program and how to grow your email list, how to run an online business, all the interviews with people, teaching you how to start a membership and a quiz, and do social media, none of those matter until you decide once and for all, I’m going to build my online business. I’m going to spread this message of whatever your message is without hesitation.
Procrastination is an attitude. It’s a disease. It is not something that goes away with 10 steps. It’s not something that goes away, but I’ve got an accountability partner, I’m never going to procrastinate. It’s not, Nope. It’s not something that goes away with a to-do list, it’s not something that goes away with an extra cup of coffee. It’s just not right. It ends when you stop waiting for an invitation, it ends when you create your own opportunities and you pounce on them like a lion on a gazelle, it ends today. Today.
Procrastination stops today once and for all if you decide that it does. I had a friend of mine who wrote me the other day, said I’ve been working on procrastination, rather than anti-procrastination. He said, I usually struggle with trying to get things perfect and it takes forever to get it done.
I’ve gotten better, especially as I’ve been hearing and reading more about just getting a minimum viable product and then tweaking it. I was like, yes, the MVP is a concept I’ve lived by for years, a minimum viable product long before I’d ever even heard the term. Like that’s what I did. Focusing on that will help you limit your procrastination big time.
Again, the idea of what has to be perfect. No, it has to get done. Done is better than perfect. Just take the first step, just create the first module. I’m good at it now and I will admit that my first online course took me about three weeks to create, but it should not take six weeks. I should not hear you talking in May that you’re creating a course and you’re still talking about it in August. Doesn’t take that long. Just commit to getting it done, do it in five days, do it in a couple of weeks, do it in three weeks, like, get it done. Stop procrastinating.
This ends when you decide once and for all to do what you are called to do without hesitation. That’s when it ends. Stop waiting for an invitation, create your own opportunities. Until you do that, you’re going to continue to procrastinate. So how do you end it? Once and for all.
You go back to what Tony Evan said, start at the beginning and be responsible where you are. That’s how you’ll get more. So I want you to think about the ways that you have procrastinated. What are some of those ways that you’ve procrastinated and think about what’s causing that? Or is it because you don’t know where to start? Well, then find out where to start. Is it because you want more, you’re waiting for something better, start where you are. You’ll think through what we talked about and focus on specific, I don’t know, 5, 10, 15 things that you procrastinate on.
Look for those specific ways and then use what you’ve, what we’ve learned in this episode to stop procrastinating once and for all, and then make sure that you subscribe don’t procrastinate on that either rating and review and subscribe so that you don’t miss the next episode, the next episode is Oh my gosh, it’s just the good one. I’m interviewing my friend, Jeff Brown, talking about the simple habit that expands your influence. You do not want to miss this episode.
I didn’t even think I wish I had planned this, but this episode, the procrastination episode, and the interview, Jeff Brown about the simple habit that expands your influence tie in so well. Because what we’re going to talk about in that episode is something that I, and my friends and probably you consistently daily almost procrastinate on, and you don’t want to do that. So make sure you hit that subscribe button. So you don’t miss my interview with Jeff Brown. I’ll see you then.