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A dash is simply a short burst of focused activity during which you force yourself to do nothing but work on the procrastinated item for a very short period of time—perhaps as little as just one minute.
The first thing is to take one minute and just write down the steps you need to do to finish the task - just a rough draft, at first, and that’s it.
Now there is nothing else to think about, and there is no way to screw this task up. Everything is laid out and you can just start working on it.
First, give your friend $100. If you get the task done by 5 PM, you get your $100 back. If it doesn’t, you lose the $100.
Or make it $200 that the friend doesn’t keep — they donate it to some weird organizations, in your name.
Get the picture? That’s a commitment device.
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Don’t be vague. Specify what you need to get done - research shows that having concrete goals is correlated with huge increases in confidence and feelings of control.
You have 2-2.5 hours of peak productivity every day. You may actually be 30% more effective at that time. For most of us, this happens in the morning.
Those are the hours when you should be working on your main goals. Why would you want to waste that on a conference call or a staff meeting?