volunteer management best practices

25 Ways to Kill Procrastination for Volunteer Coordinators

We all want to follow volunteer management best practices. But, most volunteer coordinators have a million and one urgent things that get in the way of planning for the future and getting important tasks done. You have agency roles that need filled, partnership meetings that need to be attended, reports that need to be written, and fires that need to be put out.

It’s soooooo easy to let volunteer management best practices like strategic program planning fall to the bottom of the To-Do list! After all, if it’s not done, it’s not going to make or break your day, right?

But, what if you had a plan in place that guided you through your year? One that could get you off the incessant gerbil wheel and on to a more purposeful approach? One that could help you plan for your greatest areas of need and helped you identify who might best be able to fill them?

It all sounds great, right? Who wouldn’t want to stop the guessing game and have a more solid plan in place?

That’s why we created the Level Up Your Volunteer Management Game Plan in 2019 Mini Series. All free, all for you. (Here’s the rest of the series:1, 3, 4, 5, 6)

The Procrastination Station

The end of the year tends to slow down, which makes it a great time to reduce your future stress by planning your future reality. 

But, first, you need to deal with your demons.

For tactic 1, we talked about five limiting mindsets that can block you from succeeding. And, we created the The Miracle Mindset Worksheet to help you replace your limiting mindsets with enabling beliefs.

This week, we tackle another barrier — procrastination. Below you’ll find a ton of volunteer management best practices to inspire you to get off the fence and start making your dreams a reality.

AND, to get the momentum going, we’ll give you a tool that makes your first step toward strategic planning easy and fun (scroll to the bottom to get it).

Here Are 25 Volunteer Management Best Practices to Beat Procrastination 

Below is a variety of volunteer management best practices to get time back on your side. Test them out and tell us what worked best for you in the comments below.

1) Meditate on what’s holding you back
What are you afraid will go wrong? Is this fear warranted? What can you do to plan for success?

2) Make a list of the reasons why you think you procrastinate
Try to eliminate one reason each week.

3) Give yourself a break
If you’ve been hard and yourself because productivity has been slipping recently, it may be a sign that you need to take a few days off to recharge your battery.

4) Intentionally budget your time
Estimate the time you need to complete it, double it, and then block out time on your calendar to complete it.

5) Prioritize
Work on the most important tasks first thing in the morning, before you check your email.

6) Make it a habit
Develop a routine that details where, when, and how you take care of tasks you dislike. Stick with it, and you’ll eventually stop dreading them so much.

7) Reward yourself
Give yourself a treat, a break, or a more exciting task when you’re done.

8) Soothe the stress
Play music in the background or stream a video to soothe yourself as you complete something stressful (while accepting the trade off that it will take you longer to complete).

9) Squash writer’s block
“Seed” a blank page with similar things you’ve written, if you’re experiencing writer’s block. Simply having something down can help you get over the hump.

10) Practice positive visualization
Visualize what success looks like, feels like, smells like, tastes like. How will things change when you get the current monkey off your back?

11) Enlist help
Delegate or trade tasks with volunteers or co-workers. Is there something they don’t mind doing as much as you do?

12) Practice mindfulness
Notice in your body how the stress makes you feel. Where are you holding stress and guilt for not completing your task? When sensations do you feel? Simply noticing physiological responses can help reduce their impact (it really is amazing how this works).

13) Stay accountable
Find an accountability buddy, and set specific dates to check in on each other’s progress and brainstorm how to overcome what’s getting in the way.

14) Get psyched
Sing your special “fight song” to get you revved up to go. Choose one that already exists or create your own (Seriously. I do this!).

15) Make it super easy
Break a larger task into smaller steps. Then, do one a day in short sprints until you’re all done.

16) Ditch the distractions
Turn off your phone and email alerts.Sometimes to really dig in, you need to stop all disruptions. You can let folks know when you’ll be back online.

17) Declutter
Clean up your desk.Yes, this sounds a lot like procrastination, but sometimes, it’s clutter that’s getting in the way.

18) Take a quick walk
Walk around the block to get the juices flowing again. Visualize your steps and being done.

19) “Good enough” it.
Put away perfectionism and be willing to put up with an inferior end product until you can swing back by and improve it. It’s better to be done than perfect.

20) Take it off your list (if this is possible).
Accept that the task simply won’t get done and move on with the understanding that another opportunity will come your way.

21) Celebrate each completed task, however, small, with enthusiasm.
You’ve beat procrastination one more time, after all!  Hoo-ray!

22) Set your intention
Write down your intention at the start of each day, and review them at the end of each day to ensure you’re following a purposeful plan.

23) Get medical help, if you need it
If you think your procrastination is really a symptom of a larger physical or psychological problem, set an appointment with a professional with no shame.  There’s no reason to suffer in silence, and you may be surprised at the relief you feel after you figure out what’s really up.

24) Recognize you have zero control over the past
You have some control of the present, and most control over the future. So reflect on what’s helped you defeat procrastination and what has not, and vow to leave what’s not helpful behind.

25) Forgive yourself!
Research shows self-forgiveness can actually decrease the chance you’ll procrastinate again in the future.

Now that you’ve got some tactics to defeat procrastination, let’s keep that momentum going!

We’ve got a great “quick and dirty” tool to help you quickly focus your planning for the next year. Let get ‘er done did!

Level Up Your Volunteer Management Game Plan in 2019 Mini Series

In this series, we share six free downloads to help you plan your volunteer involvement. Make sure to  grab the rest of your tools: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Each will help you take one more next step toward your best year ever!

Free [Worksheet] The SPOT Matrix

Explore YOUR CURRENT CONTEXT so that you can proactively plan to seize emerging opportunities by playing to YOUR PROGRAM STRENGTHS.

Download Now