Avoidance at work can be difficult to handle. Sometimes it’s good to avoid things, or it makes senseâ€¦For example, you want to avoid thinking about your vacation when trying to get your work done. On the other hand, most avoidance at work can have terrifying repercussions. Do it often enough, and you’ll miss deadlines, be passed over for promotion, or as a worst-case scenario, you might even lose your job. So, what are some things you can do to attack avoidance at work, become more effective and get things done?
Start with Small Steps
Whenever you have a big project which feels overwhelming, rather than avoid it, think about the pieces which make up this assignment. Divide the tasks up into small action steps, then focus on the next one.
Consider the Reward â€œat the end of tunnelâ€
There are always some projects you won’t want to do. Rather than avoid them, concentrate on the outcome rather than on the project itself. Perhaps there is some reward at the end of this project. Or maybe this will put you in line for something you’d rather be doing. By keeping your eye on the prize, it’s easier to push through and get unpleasant things done.
Create a Deadline (even when there isnâ€™t any!)
There’s nothing worse than a project which doesn’t already have a deadline. These things tend to be avoided in favor of those things that do have target dates. To get past this problem, create your own deadline. Add it to your schedule as though it has to be done by that specific day.
Block Your Perfectionist
Sometimes we put things off because we feel like we can’t put the quality of work into something as much as we’d like to. If this is one of those situations where getting something done is more important than getting it done perfectly, tell your inner perfectionist to take a hike and dive in. There’s a lot to be said for embracing the concept of â€œgood enough.â€
Take Time to Learn & Grow
More often than not, we put off things because we’re not entirely sure what we’re doing. At work, this can be especially daunting. We want to appear confident to our superiors and worry about how it looks when we appear ignorant. This behaviour is the wrong approach! It is better to figure out what you need to know, including asking for clarification than to suffer in silence and hope the problem will go away.
Figure Out What Has to Happen No Matter What
When you have more work than you do time, you will have to use avoidance on occasion. Keep a handle on this by recognising which items absolutely must happen no matter what and which items are expendable. Focus on the â€˜must-haves,â€™ and do the rest only when you have time to do them. Identifying the importance and urgency of your tasks can help you prioritise effectively.
In the end, work is going to go much better if you can avoid avoidance altogether. When you can’t, use it wisely and as sparingly as possible.