According to www.oxforddictionaries.com, the definition of procrastination is: “The action of delaying or postponing something.”
So why do we procrastinate?
There can be many reasons,
- Finding excuses like: I don’t feel like it! I’ll do it tomorrow. What’s the rush? I have more important things to do! are some common ones. The excuses may or may not be true...
- Fear of failure is another one. Is it better not to tackle it and therefore you can’t fail?
- Laidback personality. We might tell ourselves “It’ll be alright on the night”, often hoping that the situation will go away by itself, or that someone else will do it.
- Being afraid of what other people will think.
- Finding it hard to make decisions. By not being able to make the decision often the task doesn’t get done at all and can also give rise to anxiety.
I am sure there are lots more reasons and they all depend on the task in front of us.
So what happens to us when we procrastinate?
The task is hanging over us and could be making us stressed. If there is a deadline, this might be hard to meet and also doing something at the very last minute may make it less well executed because we are rushing. It may even manifest itself with sleepless nights and anxiety.
On the other end of the scale, what happens to us when we deal with things as we go or as they come up?
Well, we would have more time for other things. The pressure would be off and we would be feeling less stress. I also find that when a project is completed there is a great feeling of accomplishment, a good time to move forward.
I find that breaking a project into smaller pieces and tackling them one bit at a time sometimes helps. Deciding on specific times to do something and how long to do it for, makes me more focused. Asking for help is good if a task is becoming overwhelming, people are often pleased to help. I wrote about making lists before and ticking things off and deciding on the order of importance is a really big help.
This week I will take something off my list that I have been putting off! Will you?
Read about Maria's thoughts on lists here.