Understanding and stopping procrastination
Procrastination is a powerful enemy of productivity. It robs you of energy and time, leaving you feeling frustrated and helpless.
Procrastination is the practice of completing less urgent tasks before urgent tasks or doing pleasurable things instead of necessary ones. Procrastination is often experienced as a cycle: wanting to do something important, but avoiding it because it seems less enjoyable than something else you could do instead.
This can lead to feelings of guilt for neglecting important tasks and not being able to complete them on time. The task becomes even more complicated because you have to rush at the last minute, which causes additional stress and leads to procrastination.
Procrastination has been studied in various fields, including psychology and education. According to this study, 11.55% of procrastinators suffer from an underlying depression which causes them to procrastinate.
Some people are able to control their procrastination, while others struggle with this problem on a daily basis. Understanding why you procrastinate can help you stop this behaviour and achieve more in your life. Below are some common reasons for procrastination, some people even struggle with more than one of them:
- They don't know what they want. They don't know where they are going. They don't know how they're going to get there. Or they don't know if it's even worth going there! This state of confusion makes them put things off constantly.
- They are afraid of failure, so they put everything off until they think they will succeed. But that never happens, because there's always something new to learn, so procrastination becomes a habit that keeps them stuck in a rut for years! This is a real problem for procrastinators.
- They already have too much on their plate - too many responsibilities and obligations - and even though the list has been piling up for years, it keeps getting longer! This has also a lot to do with having their priorities sorted out.
Here are some quick tips to help with procrastination:
- Have clear priorities and let those dictate the tasks you have to complete
- Start with your most important and urgent task
- Delegate whenever you can
- Find solutions to automate or simplify some tasks
- Start with a small to-do list so you don’t feel guilty if you don’t cross off all ten items on your list
- Break down your goals into smaller steps so you don’t feel overwhelmed by a big goal
- If something takes less than two minutes, do it immediately