Don’t pre-worry about being late
iStock/Halfpoint Don’t spend time focusing on the possible consequences of being late. Psychologist Jennifer Guttman, PhD, always tell clients to use the mantra I’m not late until I’m late. “People use so much mindshare getting anxious about the possibility of being late before they’re even late,” she says. “Focus that energy instead on making sure you are completely prepared for when you arrive.” To help avoid being late in the first place, Dr. Guttman suggests setting your alarm in the morning 10 minutes earlier than you think you need to get up—because starting the day off rushed is a sure way to start off the whole day on the wrong foot.” Plus, waking up early is one of the many habits of successful people.
Mentally tell yourself to slow down
iStock/Andy-Nowack This may seem counterintuitive to people who are always in a hurry, but it may help you get more accomplished. “Often, people are rushing around working on tasks and not fully completing any of them. They’re off to the races with the next task before the last one was completed,” Dr. Guttman says. “As the day wears on, they become more hassled, feeling like they really can’t cross anything off the list because nothing is technically fully completed.”
Use a timer for everything
iStock/fstop123 “If you tend to take too long in the shower, time it. Set a timer to remind you that it’s time to leave the house to go to a meeting, or it’s time to get off social media and get back to work,” says Dr. Guttman. She suggests making a plan to work for a set number of hours and then put on a timer to go on social media as a means of self-reinforcement for another set amount of time. When the timer goes off, hold yourself accountable. Go back to work for another set amount of time, and self-reinforce again with social media for a job well done. “You will feel better for having gotten more accomplished and having held yourself to a higher standard, and most people feel proud for spending less time on social media each day,” Dr. Guttman says.