Hang up your coat! Put away your toys! Pick up your shoes! These may not break your top 1000 of memories of your mother. But it should because she was teaching you a lesson on how to avoid procrastination. Like many of us, I decided to wait until later to learn this.

Procrastination is a problem for many B2B professionals. With all the books, all the coaching, etc. our minds will tell us it’s easier to not do something than to do it. In doing some work for a professional organizer, I found a way to develop the habit needed to minimize and hopefully remove procrastination from your life. The irony is that it was a lesson my parents tried to teach me years ago.

According to the professional organizer client, procrastination is clutter. If you think about it, she’s 100 percent correct. Those e-mails you need to send, the books that need updating and other tasks on your to-do list clutter your mind and probably keep you from things you want to do. It can have a snowball effect in your mind and you get up getting nothing done or, worse, not performing to your desired level.

So, what do you?

Start by removing the clutter?

You’re probably saying “Oh, is that all. Why didn’t I think of that?” Well, that’s because you think of clutter in the big sense. To eliminate procrastination, you can start with baby steps and work your way up. And that’s where we finally tie into what Mom and probably Dad tried to teach you way back when.

If procrastination is clutter and clutter is (fill in the blank), just remove the clutter and you are actually doing something and NOT procrastinating. That can start with papers on your desk and putting them into the recycling bin. It feels better to work from a clean desk as opposed to a messy one, right? And you’re probably more productive.

You can start small with tidying up your desk or work space to larger more important items. Because even though you are only picking up a piece of paper or two or whatever that small task might be, you are actually removing procrastination. When you think of it that way, it actually makes you want to remove more. After all, who doesn’t want to remove procrastination in their lives?

And that brings us back to dear old Mom. How many times did she ask you to pick something up or put something away? Yes, she did not want your stuff lying around. But she also was teaching you how to remove procrastination in your life.

Thank you, Mom.

Happy belated Mother’s Day!