All of us are aware of the effects of procrastination and perhaps have also faced it at some point or the other. To put it straight, procrastination is the uncanny habit of avoiding a task that requires immediate attention. It leads us to choose more pleasurable ones over the less pleasurable ones, or performing not-so-important tasks prior to the important ones, thus leading to a considerable delay at all times. The delays caused due to procrastination are so high that it also results into breach of certain important deadlines, many times.
What are the occasions when people tend to procrastinate?
Procrastination would not knock the door and come to you with knowledge. From day-to-day activities to work-life, procrastination can occur with people anytime. Be it the personal problems like conflicting life with partner, health related like delay in seeing a doctor, work / study obligations like completing a project or report, procrastination tend to occur in all walks of life.
Why do people procrastinate?
There are various reasons that lead people to procrastinate. Lack of motivation is often seen as one of the most common reasons of procrastination. Leaving unattended a task that might appear unpleasant to you is a form of procrastination. Forget about external motivation, procrastinators even lack self-motivation to perform a given task.
Fear of failure is another reason why people tend to procrastinate. Technically, the head of a procrastinator works like this: What if I try hard and then fail? Better I don’t try and fail. Either case, failure is mine. Procrastinators are so used to fearing failure that they don’t even give it a try.
Dilemma of performing easy vis-à-vis difficult tasks is also procrastination. If the task is too easy, people tend to take it for granted while at the same time, avoid difficult tasks.
Lack of focus, again is the sign of procrastination. Usually while trying to perform a particular task, an individual feels distracted by varied things. Consequently, his focus is lost and hence his interest. Thus follows the delay in performing the work.
Procrastination is not your friend:
Let’s cut it straight – Procrastination is not your friend. It is not going to pay your bills on your behalf!
So, the next time you feel like delaying stuff since you don’t feel like bothering yourself with it at the moment, you know you are procrastinating. It’s time you learn the fact that procrastination is not something or to be precise, someone with whom you should live the whole of your life. A simple instance being, it is not your friend who will perform work on your behalf.
It will affect your wellbeing and worst comes worst, it will put your financial stability in jeopardy. Thus, before procrastination takes a toll on you, it is better you understand its adverse implications.
Procrastination and fear:
The claws of fear are so tightly wrapped around the skin of a procrastinator that he fears success without even taking the first step towards success. Usually, people who tend to procrastinate often are seen frustrated and annoyed. These negative thoughts of fear of failure need to be filtered in order to succeed. While your external world is affected profusely due to procrastination but at the same time your internal motivation, your self-esteem also goes for a toss. Adding to the gravity of problems is the fear of rejection, unworthiness and loss of morale. It is pertinent to channelize your energy to a particular task to overcome this fear and more important to try before giving up your hands to God.
Procrastination and self-doubt:
Procrastination is that uncanny habit which has knowingly or unknowingly entered your system and if you got to quash this evil, self-doubt needs to be done away with, permanently. Only determination and self-motivation can remove all the doubts that you have on your own capability. A tried and tested method to overcome this is to jot down a list of all goals you want to achieve and keep a track of every unaccomplished task and the reason for such failure thereof. Easier said than done but once you are determined, nothing can stop you from reaching the pinnacles of success.
Procrastination and Self-sabotage:
When talking about procrastination, self-sabotage is a must-mention. The reason being procrastination is the line of difference between intention and action, and when this gap will widen up, there’s no surety. He comes out as a winner who is able to bridge this gap as soon as possible. More than often, the situation is like this: We intend to perform the task at a particular time, but when the time arrives, instead of acting we get ourselves involved in self-deliberations, try to find out excuses to delay the task and the fact is we also come up with beautiful fabricated reasons to delay the task. If this instance is evaluated, you’ll observe that the decision to delay was our own decision – our self – which sabotages its own intention
Procrastination and people around
There have also been instances wherein the reason for procrastination is found in one’s own family, colleagues, peers and other people around. The taunts and frivolous comments from friends might sometimes be impressed upon an individual so harshly that he tends to lose his self-confidence and motive of life.
Procrastination – the thief of time
It is rightly said by Edward Young that “Procrastination is a thief a time”. The delay that we make while procrastinating is a dear loss of time – that valuable time which shall never come back. The time that is spent by people to find out reasons to delay the tasks can indeed be utilized to perform those tasks. But the procrastinators that we are, we tend to choose the “better option” of finding out the ways to delay, delay and delay.
The moment we resolve be deprive ourselves of this, there shall not be a better utilization of time.
Procrastination leads to regrets
This is no rocket science that wasting time that can never come back, breaching the deadlines, sitting idle doing nothing, are things that every individual regrets at some point or the other. The severity of the situation can only be felt when there’s a loss of some of the most important things that we never wanted to lose in the first place. And why did that happen? Because you were busy procrastinating, either due to the fear of failure, criticisms faced or lack of motivation.
Thus, frankly speaking, doing something wrong and then lamenting over it later will leave you in the middle of nowhere. If you concentrate too much on what has gone from your life, you’ll further waste your time and energy.
Procrastination as an opportunity to develop integrity
If problems are taken as an opportunity to improve and enhance our abilities, then half the battle is already won. Instead of cursing procrastination as the problem that it is, it should be taken as an opportunity to develop one’s own self – one’s integrity. Learn to regulate yourself and abide by what you say.
The usual tendency of procrastinators is to promise to perform certain task but eventually end up either delaying it or not doing it at all. Even better, many procrastinators avoid making promises which spares them the horror of breaking them. This making and breaking of promises has a serious impact on the way people see us. Whenever we promise something and not do it, the trust of people will eventually fade away. Our words shall fall as empty vessels upon people. This might also affect our integrity and self-respect.
When you cut procrastination lose…
The moment you gather the courage to break the procrastination cycle, you will be amazed to see the results of it. The tasks that you were so effectively delaying were in fact so easy to accomplish. You might also sit back and wonder, “Why you didn’t try to complete them then”.
A great option to break the procrastination cycle is to plan your day, evaluate your priorities and then set your foot to action, without any delay.
Also, don’t hesitate to ask for help from your family, friends, etc. The moment you find yourself in a fix, seek appropriate guidance. This will spare you from delaying or abandoning any task. Make sure you approach the right person to assist you with your problems. Any wrong or inappropriate guidance can leave you blindfolded.
Last but not the least, never lose confidence in yourself. Always trust yourself and honor your self-esteem. Success shall touch your feet, only if you want it to do so.
Procrastination is one of the most common and deadliest of diseases and its toll on success and happiness is heavy – Wayne Gretzky