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I used to be a chronic procrastinator until I came across a simple, yet powerful rule called the 2-minute rule.
The 2-minute rule consists of two parts.
For example, replying to an email, tossing your laundry in the wash, taking out the trash, etc.
If it takes less than 2 minutes, it’s not even worth writing down—just do it right now and get it out of the way.
Don’t let these little things clutter your to-do list. If there’s something you’ve been putting off that takes less than 2 minutes, then follow the rule and do it right now. Getting an early start has been linked to better productivity among other things, aside from avoiding procrastination, and this guide shares 10 benefits of rising early and helps you to start your day early.
For example, let’s say you have to write a 5-page essay. With the 2 minute rule, rather than thinking about having to write all 5 pages from the get go, your goal would be to write just one sentence.
You learn in physics that an object in motion will stay in motion, while an object at rest will stay at rest (unless acted on by an external force).
The same is true when it comes to getting work done. The hardest part of doing anything is getting started in the first place. But once you’re started, it’s a lot easier to keep going. Here are 5 daily confidence boosters to help you along in your career path.
This is why the 2-minute rule is so powerful because it tricks your mind into thinking that the hardest part—pushing yourself into motion—is actually the easiest part. It makes it so easy to start taking action that you can’t say no.
If you try to get yourself to write an entire essay at once, you’ll probably put it off for later. But, if you only have to write one sentence, you’re a lot more likely to follow through. And once you have one sentence down, you’ve already built some momentum so it’ll be a lot easier to keep going. Before you know it, you’ll have written an entire page.
Working on projects with other team members allows you to put this skill to good use because you will be assigned tasks from your given mentors. In order to not only finish but do very well and impress the hiring manager enough to extend a job offer to you, you will have to show diligence and other soft skills.
It might sound silly, but trust me, it works.
If you ever find yourself procrastinating, just ask yourself this one question:
What’s one thing you can do right now that will take less than 2 minutes?
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