Procrastination: Why We Procrastinate And How To Fight This Behavior.

Procrastination: Why We Procrastinate And How To Fight This Behavior.

Just recently I was reading a guest post on Problogger.net by Jennifer Blanchard of Procrastinating Writers. The post reminded me of my own problems with procrastination and how I dealt with it.

‘I used to be a procrastinator.’

I usually put off tasks that I didn’t want to do till the last minute. I procrastinated in doing everyday activities. Household chores, writing papers in school and other things I hated doing, usually didn’t get started or done till the last minute. I even procrastinated on things I wanted to do, like starting a blog, for a long time.

So, what is procrastination?

According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the definition of procrastination is to put off intentionally or habitually the doing of something that should be done. Early behavioral signs include saying to yourself you ‘should’ or ‘have to’ do something, instead of doing it. These signs are the start of not wanting to put serious effort towards doing something that needs to be done.

Procrastination results in missing good opportunities in life, not to mention all the guilt, stress and overwhelm that comes with it. This behavior has a domino effect and if you let it slip in your life then you will start to procrastinate more and more. This habit negatively impact your personal life as well as your career as depression soon follows and next thing you know you are going downhill.

There are many reasons that can make you procrastinate. You might do so because you are tired or lazy or simply because you feel overwhelmed of the things you need to do.

Fear is certainly the top reason why people procrastinate. Procrastinators often have the fear of not being good enough, fear of failing or even fear of being successful. I procrastinated on starting a blog for a long time because I feared that my blog was not going to be as good as the other blogs out there. But I could not procrastinate any longer. I had to start the blog in order to find out how good it is going to be. Some people think that they cannot handle the stress or consequences that comes with the success. That is the fear of being successful.

Another main reason you may procrastinate is because of the fear of being perfect. This is a common but serious problem as it will affect your self esteem. Nobody is perfect and nobody ever will be. Perfectionism is always craved by human race but it can’t be achieved. The main point to remember is that it just takes time in doing everything and if you start doing what you need to do today, you will get closer to your goals. If you let the fear part take over then you will always be compromising in becoming successful. You should not fear about making mistakes. Everybody makes them. Learn from your mistakes and better yourself.

You may procrastinate because you feel overwhelmed by all the things you need to do. You may think it is too much work so you don’t get started at all. Being successful with anything you do takes time and effort. So, learn to take one step at a time. One day at a time. This way you do not feel overwhelmed but just think about what you have to accomplish for that day. Reassess your priorities and break your goals into small (monthly, weekly or daily) goals. This makes the task less overwhelming and you are going to be more focused in achieving your goals.

When something is forced on somebody that they don’t want or like to be doing then they tend to procrastinate.  Instead of being forced on you, if you make consious decision on doing the task then you are more likely to carry it out. It is the human nature to procrastinate when you think doing something is more work then fun.

People also procrastinate because they are physically or mentally tired. People working longer hours tend to procrastinate more as working more can have negative effect on your motivation and productivity.

Everybody procrastinates to some extent but  chronic  procrastination can cause significant psychological disability or a dysfunction. There are a lot of ways you can fight procrastination. Some of the significant ways are:

  • If you are really inspired to do something then you tend not to procrastinate as often. Being inspired to do something in life helps fight low motivation and in turn fight procrastinating thoughts and behaviors.
  • Exercise is a great way to be physically and mentally fit. Often people that procrastinate have low energy levels. Increasing energy level by exercising is one of the most effective way to deal with procrastination. The more physically and mentally fit you are the more you can deal with procrastination.
  • Diet is another way of stop procrastinating. Diet of mainly raw fruits and vegetables helps increase your energy levels and in turn makes you procrastinate less.
  • Relaxed and stress free surroundings also helps procrastinate less. Stress free environment relaxes your mind and you will be more focused on your objective, hence become more productive as well.
  • Motivationself discipline and routine helps lower and eventually eliminate the procrastinating behaviors. Setting up goals in life and working towards achieving those goals no matter the hindrances is one of the best ways to fight procrastination.
  • Rewarding yourself even for small achievements or success also tends to lower procrastinating thoughts. Too much reward however can have a negative impact in achieving your goals. But rewarding yourself often can really help maintain the necessary balance between fun and work.

What makes you procrastinate and what approach do you take to fight procrastination? Leave comments below and share your thoughts.

-Adam Paudyal

The Action Taker.

Before you go...

19 Responses to Procrastination: Why We Procrastinate And How To Fight This Behavior.

  1. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Dilli Ram Paudel, Adam Paudyal. Adam Paudyal said: Procrastination: Why We Procrastinate And How To Fight This Behavior. http://bit.ly/b4DYKb [...]

  2. [...] Procrastination is to put off intentionally or habitually the doing of something that should be done. This can cause psychological disability or a dysfunction which can results into missing good opportunities in life. Everybody procrastinates to some extent but you can amass guilt, stress and be overwhelmed in life if you procrastinate too much. Breaking your goals into bite sized chunks helps to overcome procrastination. To find out about ways to fight procrastination click here. [...]

  3. [...] Oftentimes, getting out of such situations is going to be very tough and can even lead you to procrastinate. But just think about the potential impact of Change in your life. If you don’t want to [...]

  4. [...] The awesome thing I found within couple of days of joining the group is that the more I expressed my ideas and thoughts, the more ideas and energy seemed to unfold. Whether through commenting, retweeting or sharing each others’ work, I learned to be active within the group which in a way also helped me fight procrastination. [...]

  5. Thu Nguyen says:

    Hi Adam,

    I was a big procrastinator in elementary. It got worse in high school and college, LOL, I disappeared. I think there were some days which I had that mental ‘fight or flight’ attitude on and even now, through habitual rendering it’s still evident. I still procrastinate.

    Nobody ever told me it was a deadly management disease. However, it’s something that can turn your life out of control and put you on the track to finding fast rewards. With discipline, I think it’s under control now.

    Writing and blogging definitely helps me with procrastination. Thanks so much for sharing your research on this, very interesting.

    Talk soon!
    Thu
    Thu Nguyen recently posted..The Best Commentators of Blogging For dot INFOMy Profile

  6. [...] Procrastination – Why We Procrastinate and How To Fight This Behavior: Ah, this article by Adam really got me into the groove of thinking about my streak with procrastination. It can become a deadly disease. However, check out some of the ways you can overcome this barrier NOW. [...]

  7. I’m sure everyone sufferes from procastination at some point. I think the best way to overcome it is by focused work time. I hear of a technique of 5 minutes per task your you’re workng on. When 5 minutes ends you move to the next one and so on.

    I’m not sure how well that works, but personally I use a 25 minute technique for focussing and getting things done.
    Matthew Needham recently posted..The Perfect Book for Start Up EntrepreneursMy Profile

  8. [...] You ended up back to the old self because you didn’t try hard enough or maybe because you just procrastinated, or maybe you chickened out from [...]

  9. [...] and attention. And then burnout soon follows. Burnouts are not a good sign as they can make you procrastinate and totally give up on blogging. These are some of the tell-tale signs of you neglecting the [...]

  10. [...] Writer’s block is one of the most horrifying conditions a blogger can face in their blogging career. This condition can start with the temporary difficulty of dealing with the tasks at hand but if left untreated, in the beginning, can quickly add up to be a severe problem. It can give rise to the inability to construct new and creative blog posts, makes you feel burned out and leads you to  procrastinate. [...]

  11. Terry Conti says:

    Hi Adam, very well written. This blog post is a very good wake up call for anyone who is always saying I should instead of doing.

    I’d like to add a good way to beat procrastination is by thinking about the outcome of your actions. How bad do you want it.

    Doing something everyday towards your business no matter how large or small is the key to moving forward.

    Terry Conti
    Terry Conti recently posted..Why is a Mailing List Sooo ImportantMy Profile

  12. [...] Procrastination can be the biggest time waster of all. I mean everybody procrastinates to some extent but too much of it can be like a chronic illness. Think about how much time and money you have wasted procrastinating and putting off  the tasks that needed to be done. Instead of just procrastinating and postponing what needs to be done, figure out the ways to deal with this early on because the best way to get shit done is by actually doing it. Am I Right or am I Wrong? [...]

  13. [...] of excuses as you are reading this. Making excuses is a bad habit as it is just another form of procrastination. Success is only possible when you stop making excuses and commit to make things [...]

  14. [...] Upcoming Series on Procrastination | Social DiscomfortAre You a Procrastinator?Procrastination: Why We Procrastinate And How To Fight This Behavior. | Endeavor-Online [...]

  15. [...] Have you ever thought about yourself as being a successful entrepreneur? Everybody wants to be successful unless, of course, they fear success and procrastinate. [...]

  16. [...] simply procrastinate or are afraid of [...]

  17. [...] me. It was not letting me get to my true potential. The fear became so prominent that it led me to procrastinate doing the everyday things that needed to be done. I even procrastinated on doing the things I loved [...]

  18. [...] This certainly is a coincidence but I remember the time when I was writing that post on procrastination. I wrote the post but procrastinated to publish it because I thought it wasn’t the perfect post [...]

  19. [...] How to fight procrastination [...]

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