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Eliminate Your Procrastination in under 2 minutes

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The Power of the Two-Minute Rule to Eliminate Procrastination

After reading tons of productivity books and taking a variety of classes on how to be more productive and effective, I came across many different rules. There's the two-year rule, the five-minute rule, and the five-second rule. However, these rules seemed to be more geared towards companies or entrepreneurs. However, I've found that these rules, with the right adjustment, can still apply to the average individual looking to excel in life. As a former slacker and habitual procrastinator, I've tweaked these rules and implemented them into my own life to drastically cut down my procrastination. Doing so has helped me write multiple books, host one of the top shows in Northern Virginia, and easily tackle a hectic workload. In this blog, we will explore two different two-minute rules that can help anyone eliminate procrastination.

The First Two-Minute Rule

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If a task will only take about 2 minutes to complete, don't spend endless time planning out the best time to do it. Simply do it immediately.

The first two-minute rule comes from the book "Getting Things Done" by David Allen. According to Allen, if a task takes two minutes or less to complete, it should be done right away. For example, if you need to take out the trash, which takes roughly two minutes, instead of writing it down on a to-do list or potentially forgetting about it, just do it now. This rule biases the brain towards taking action and away from procrastination. Here are some other tasks that might take two minutes throughout the day: organizing your desk, watering your plants, or clipping your nails. By doing these tasks immediately, you prevent them from piling up and becoming overwhelming.

The Second Two Minute Rule

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The second two-minute rule comes from the book "Atomic Habits" by James Clear. According to Clear, when you're faced with a task that you don't really want to do, simplify it down to two minutes or less. For example, instead of tackling your entire reading assignment, just read one paragraph. Instead of memorizing the entire periodic table, start by memorizing just 10 flashcards. This may seem like a Jedi mind trick, but it can be a powerful tool to overcome procrastination.

When starting out, limit yourself to only two minutes of working on the task. For example, if you want to build a habit of studying for one hour every day before dinner, start by studying for just two minutes. Sit down, open your laptop, study for two minutes, and then close your laptop and do something else. This may seem unproductive initially, but staying consistent with this two-minute routine day after day will eventually establish the habit of studying daily. By becoming a person who studies for just two minutes a day, you set the foundation for becoming a person who can study for an hour a day. Starting small makes it easier to build and expand upon the habit. As a college student, I understood that building a reading habit would benefit me in my personal life as well as my professional life beyond college. Initially, I struggled to read pages at a time in one sitting. I'd simply get bored and procrastinate. However, once I began to apply this rule and do a little bit at a time, I found myself forming a habit. And, like a muscle, my capacity to read increased gradually. Instead of only reading for 2 minutes, I was eventually able to read for 2 hours with ease.


Procrastination can be a major roadblock to productivity, but using the two-minute rule can help you overcome it. By completing tasks that take two minutes or less immediately, you prevent them from piling up and becoming overwhelming. Additionally, by simplifying tasks you don't want to do to just two minutes, you make them more manageable and increase the likelihood of getting started. Consistently practicing the two-minute rule can help you establish positive habits and become a more productive individual.

If you want to learn more about productivity tips from books, check out some of the other articles on my website.

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Leviticus Rich is the premiere productivity expert and coach located in the DMV area within Northern VA.

Leviticus has helped thousands of people improve their time management, focus, and productivity by offering some of the best, science-backed, advice and techniques in the modern era.

P.S. If you need help managing your productivity and destroying procrastination, click the link here to sign up for free productivity coaching.

If you want more resources or guides on how to boost your finances, fitness, or lifestyle, click the link here.

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