Procrastination is defined as being a habit of delaying or postponing something. Knowing how to overcome procrastination is very important to avoiding missed opportunities, stress, resentment, hysterical work hours as well as guilt. Knowing how to overcome procrastination comes from knowing what some of the more common causes of procrastination are.
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1. Is it stress?
Stress often plays a large role in procrastination. Overcoming stress can be done by prioritising, tackling small and easy tasks, taking breaks, taking the time to do something relaxing, and getting enough sleep and exercise. In many cases, to overcome stress means to overcome procrastination.
2. Do I lack motivation or is this simply laziness?
Procrastination can be caused by pure laziness or it can be caused by lack of motivation, which is temporary laziness. Laziness is when we procrastinate because we feel both physically and emotionally drained, making even the easiest of tasks seem like too much work. Exercise helps by raising your energy levels. Lacking motivation is worse than simple laziness as this means that you need to find purpose in what you are doing, and only then can you truly succeed at what you are doing.
3. Am I overwhelmed?
We often procrastinate when we feel overwhelmed, when we feel as if we have too many things on our plate at one time. We know that procrastinating will help us less in the long run but it seems to help in the moment. To overcome overwhelm and procrastination, we need to stop and reassess our priorities. We need to reduce our list of things to do and remove things that aren’t actually as important as we initially thought.
4. Does my discipline and time management play a role?
If you are encountering tasks that you don’t particularly want to do or your self-discipline is lacking, procrastination becomes much harder to avoid. Time management plays a large role in procrastination. Falling behind because you are too disorganised is a problem. To overcome these problems, figure out what your bad habit is and devise a new habit to take its place.
5. Do I lack skill or am I a perfectionist?
Lacking the skills to complete tasks leads to procrastination. You can solve this problem by educating yourself further, delegating tasks that you lack the skills to do, or simply eliminating tasks that aren’t needed. Perfectionism is believing that you need to do something perfectly without failure. This pressure that you put on yourself will only lead you to procrastinate further. You are only human, remind yourself of this from time to time.
Knowing how to control and overcome procrastination is all about recognising when and how you start procrastinating, why it happens, and obviously then planning ways to better manage your tasks. Some of these solutions can be difficult to implement, but they are effective. Good luck, now get back to work!
Written by Sarah Kantor