“From the fruit of their lips people are filled with good things,
and the work of their hands brings them reward.” Proverbs 12: 14 NIV
The Thief Of Time
Procrastination is the action of delaying or postponing things on a regular basis without proper justifiable reasons. A lot have been said on this topic before and a lot more will be said in the future. If you are affected then be encouraged that you can overcome this.
If you are to work against procrastination, you first need to understand its nature. One researcher states that procrastination is really a “self-inflicted wound that gradually chips away at your most valuable resource in the world: Time.”
Procrastination may have gotten the best of you in the past, but the good news is that you’re in control. What you decide to do with what you are blessed with is up to you. But choose wisely, because it will determine who you are and where you will end up in this life.
Related: Choose Today: Benefit Tomorrow
It Is A Product Of Your Emotions
The human brain is often as irrational and indecisive as it is powerful. The rational part of your brain (the prefrontal cortex) is locked in a constant battle with the more emotional, instinctive side (the amygdala).
As nice as it would be to use logic to convince yourself why you shouldn’t put off important work it is not that simple. You are emotional by nature and your emotions are often what play the biggest role in your tendency to procrastinate.
This is especially true if you have a hard time regulating your emotions. Even though you might feel guilty for putting things off, you tend to rationalize your behavior by convincing yourself that it’s really not a big deal. This is what keeps you locked in a never-ending cycle of inaction.
It Is A Product Of Your Associations
It is believed that you are the average of about five to six people who you spend the most of your time with. You know the saying “show me your company and I will tell you who you are.”
The company you keep sets the standard for what you perceive as acceptable or unacceptable. Studies show that laziness and indifference can be as infectious as physical diseases if you are in constant contact with it.
Look at your social media feeds, the apps on your phone, and even the food in your pantry and know that they all affect you. However, nobody can force you to put off your work or plan, you choose to do so. Once you realize that you have the final say in this matter, then you’re free.
It Is A Product Of Your Environment
Does your environment encourages you to put things off or to treat them as urgent? If your environment is littered with temptations and distractions, you’re putting yourself at a disadvantage from the get-go.
Keep your environment consistent. Your brain loves patterns, and if you return to the same space over and over, your mind can channel its energy into work instead of wondering why you’re moving from place to place.
Make sure everything you need is within arm’s reach, comfortable and safe. If you habitually leave things around you’re giving yourself an excuse to interrupt your workflow and though pattern. Something else may grab your attention and draw you away.
It Is A Product Of Your Mindfulness
What this is saying, in other words, is that chronic procrastination can literally change your brain structure. Even though you can sense the harm you are doing, giving into what your mind is full of, makes procrastination seems okay. Your brain just reinforces a mental pattern that is has become accustomed to.
The right habits can rewire your brain for a better self-awareness that allows you to control your behavior. When the mind is in order the body will take the clue and follow suite.
Having autonomy and freedom of choice are important parts of a healthy life, but sometimes we need to pull the reins in, to be more productive and constructive.
Related: Business Success Starts In Your Mind
Things to Avoid
- Low levels of motivation. Studies on the topic of inspiration suggest that laziness may be caused by a decreased level of enthusiasm. Low levels of motivation can be caused by over-stimulation or excessive impulses or distractions. This will cause you to be unsettled, restless and lack concentration.
- Low self-confidence. Low self-esteem leads to lack of confidence about who you are and what you can do. You will often feel incompetent, unloved, or inadequate. If you struggle with low self-esteem you will be consistently be afraid of making mistakes or letting others down.
- Fear of failure. Many psychologists have recognized that the underlying cause of fear of failure is actually fear resulting from shame or embarrassment. The actual incident is not the real problem, it is the accompanying emotion of unworthiness that it provokes.
There are other reasons such as poor understanding, application and drive but these listed here are the major areas to seek help to correct, if you struggle with procrastination.
Let Your Changes Start Now
The last thing you should do, if you are guilty of procrastination, is to shame yourself. In fact, a productive first step to better habits, is forgiving yourself for the past and start a new slate.
Procrastination can make you feel isolated at times, but it’s encouraging to know you’re not the only one on the battlefield. One wise solution might be to stop doing work that you hate and find the work you love.
There is no magical solution to eliminating distractions. There are some amazing technologies that will give you more information if you search the internet. They are apps that claim to work wonders when it comes to fueling productive, uninterrupted work sessions. One noted system is the Pomodoro Technique that you can strive to learn more of online.
If you have a strong desire to stop procrastinating but feel that you cannot do so, you should seek help. If you continually find yourself putting assignments off, it might be time to reevaluate why that’s happening. If you are unable to complete important daily tasks, then you need help.
If you procrastinate over a long period of time, you can become demotivated and disillusioned, which can lead to depression and even job loss, in extreme cases. When this habit coexists with conditions, such as a negative mood, and mindset it gets worse.
Make a promise to someone you love, a close friend or challenge yourself because sometimes, your willpower alone isn’t enough to ward off that temptation to procrastinate. I hope these small reminders and encouragements, are able to help you. Know that you can stop procrastinating and start doing as soon as possible with the right mindset.
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