How to overcome laziness


Aashkaa Nair

Mental Health Writer

Laziness can build up due to a variety of reasons like when we don't want to face something, when we feel the task is way too difficult for us or because we feel overwhelmed and think the task needs a group of people rather than just us alone.

Overcoming laziness can sound way too difficult at first but it's really not. Everything in the world sounds difficult unless we try doing it. Laziness is something all of us suffer from to different degrees but the important thing is to not let it stop us from living the life of our dreams.

Here are some ways to overcome laziness:

1. Setting up manageable goals

Sometimes our work load makes us lazy because the pressure of finishing the task starts mounting. That's when we need to make our goals manageable. We need to avoid stuffing our plate with too many things at first.

Instead we can focus on what's important and what needs to be done first. Once we start figuring out our priorities, we will find our workload easing out. Let's remember to focus on the quality of our work rather than the quantity. Submitting more work with no quality doesn't count!

2. Decluttering the surroundings

I will not let anyone walk through my mind with their dirty feet.

- Mahatma Gandhi

Just like negative people can disrupt a clear mind, a dirty workplace can disrupt a focused mind. It's important to declutter our workspace for mental peace and clarity. Orderliness and structure are two things which human beings become used to once incorporated in routine.

Just by putting a few files in the cupboard, placing the pens and pencils in the pen stand and pinning our tasks on the soft board can create a lot of difference and get us fired up for completing our tasks.

3. Thinking about the benefits of completing the tasks

We can only get the actual feeling of relief and joy when we actually do our work. But when we're finding it a little difficult to get the motivation to complete our tasks, we can try to think about the benefits we will gain once we overcome our laziness and take action.

If we keep focusing on the difficulties and obstacles, we're never going to do it. Hence, focusing on the benefits we will get once we finish the work will drive us to take action.

For example, it can be a good grade for a college assignment or an 'employee of the month' award.

4. Doing one thing at a time

It's natural to feel overwhelmed when we have a lot of work to do. Therefore it becomes important to break down the amount of work we have into small tasks and then do one thing at a time.

Stuffing our plate with too many things can only make things worse for us and become a big psychological roadblock. Instead, we can prioritize effectively to do the tasks one at a time. It will make things easier to handle.

5. Following the 5-second rule

We feel like we want to do something, but then we don't feel like it. Our mind keeps playing tricks with us. There's a simple psychological technique to overcome this.

The next second time we start contemplating if we actually want to do the work, we'll use the 5 second rule: Countdown, 5-4-3-2-1- GO.

Then, we'll simply get up and do it. Physical movement is key here. Once we actually get up and start doing it, we will see the difference.

However, if we don't physically move within 5 seconds, our mind will kill that instinct to do the work at hand. We've got to move fast!

6. Working with a partner instead of going solo

Working with someone who can hold us accountable for our lazy behaviour will make a big difference. So, let's start working with people who can motivate us and help create a positive environment for us to work in.

For example if we schedule a time with our friend to exercise, we will actually get up and do it. It's important to make sure we choose someone we're comfortable with and who can actually help us overcome our laziness.

7. Dressing up for the work at hand

Whether we believe it or not, dressing up has an aura of its own. If we think about it, every formal setting has a dress code. Have we ever wondered why?

Dressing right is correlated with productivity. It boosts our self-esteem and confidence and makes us feel responsible. (Also, there is less possibility of us sleeping at a random time in our formals than our pyjamas!) Therefore, we can try dressing up once in a while to feel good about ourselves and be super-productive.

We all have our highs and lows. It's not important to be perfect at everything we do, but it's important to try doing it first. If we never start it, we're never, ever going to finish it.

If you'd also like to know how to stay productive during the lockdown, click here to learn how stay active and focused.

View more content by Aashkaa Nair

Discussion Board

How do you overcome laziness?

Rohit Chopra
There are many techniques mentioned in the article already. Here is one more that I found very useful: Make a checklist of the things you wish to do the next day before going to sleep. So when you wake up, you are fully aware of what needs to be done during the course of the day and the urge to waste time does not arise. 🤗🙏
Rishi Anand
Yes Rohit, I have to agree too and you're absolute right. Me too have tried & tested a checklist technique out & it does really wonders and truly makes person's course of the day an awesome one & doesn't let the urge to waste time.
Mayank Chouhan
Mam i m a student and it is a very useful for me 😍😍😍 You are great