Why go to the gym tonight? After all, you haven't gone in a week. Why take out the garbage when your whole apartment is a mess?
Fair points. But it's time to break the cycle.
We browsed Reddit and Quora threads on overcoming laziness and pulled out the easiest ways to set yourself on a path toward greater productivity.
Read on and get inspired.
1. Set a 10-minute alarm
Multiple Redditors shared some variation on the idea that you should tell yourself you'll only work on the dreaded task for a designated time period - and then you can stop.
Here's an example, from backformore: "I set an alarm for 10 minutes and then see how much I can get done in that time. Usually, it gets me motivated to keep going after the timer goes off, but if it doesn't at least I did something."
2. Find a workaround
Rebecca Martinez talks about "directing your laziness" into innovation. She writes:
"Being lazy can lead to useful shortcuts and inventions, so find the thing you really want to be lazy about and then come up with a working way to make it easier. Suddenly your laziness is actually productive."
Several Redditors highlighted the importance of exercise for beating laziness, particularly when you do it first thing in the morning.
As hackday puts it, "Once you get your blood pumping, you will realise that you feel wakeful and energetic instead of sleepy and lethargic. "
4. Switch up your work environment
"I find that I procrastinate constantly when I'm at home, so when I want to be productive, I go to a library or another public space," writes scissa.
Recent research suggests that being around other people who are working hard can motivate us to buckle down, too.
5. Get a partner
HeartlySerious suggests finding a partner to hold you accountable for your non-lazy behavior.
For example: "If you schedule time at the gym with a friend, you'll have more motivation to actually get up."
6. Dress up
Here's a tip that's particularly useful for those who work remotely. If you can't find the energy to stop futzing around on Facebook and start writing your project proposal, consider changing out of those stained sweatpants.
As fashion psychologist Karen Pine told Forbes, "A lot of clothing has symbolic meaning for us, whether it's 'professional work attire' or 'relaxing weekend wear', so when we put it on we prime the brain to behave in ways consistent with that meaning."
7. Follow the 'two-minute rule'
GEEKitty has a "two-minute rule": "If it takes less than two minutes, just do it."
It's similar to a strategy used by David Allen, the author of "Getting Things Done." As soon as Allen sees an email in his inbox, he decides whether he can deal with it in two minutes or less. If so, he deals with it right then.
8. Don't 'break the chain'
iluvucorgi points out the "calendar trick" that actor and comedian Jerry Seinfeld uses to motivate himself to write.
As Seinfeld told software developer Brad Isaac, for every day he gets his writing done, he puts a big 'X' over that day on the calendar. After a few days, he has a nice chain and his only job is not to break it.