What is Procrastination and How Can You Overcome it?

Procrastination has always been with us. In many societies throughout history, the practice of putting off work has often been used as a means of getting ahead in life. 

In today’s lingo, the word “procrastination” typically refers to putting things off until the very end. 

What is procrastination?

To start with, the word procrastination is actually a misnomer. There are actually two processes involved when it comes to putting things off. In most cases, if you’re dealing with a situation where you have some sort of deadline, the first process is deciding that it’s not a good idea to put things off. For most procrastinators, this process is associated with feelings of uncertainty, and they begin to feel uncomfortable and afraid when the deadline approaches.

Why do we procrastinate? 

One of the most common reasons is simply because we are too tired to do anything. This can take many forms, such as being too tired to exercise, being too tired to go shopping, or being too tired to deal with a job. 

Whatever the reason, it’s important to realize that this pattern of neglecting a task just seems to apply more to larger tasks than to smaller ones. For instance, when you are putting off starting a job or completing an important project, it doesn’t really make much sense to talk yourself out of taking action on that particular task.

The biggest procrastination culprit is actually not really a task at all, but a pattern of avoiding getting started. Many of us will sit down at our desks and cross our fingers and hope that it won’t rain. Although there is nothing wrong with this, it does nothing to help you actually get off your butt and do something about it! 

If you are like most people, this is not what you want to hear, so take action: get out there and start taking action towards your goals!

How to overcome procrastination? Just do it

Overcoming procrastination starts with getting started on the important tasks that need to be done. 

Getting started is the easy part; getting completed is where the procrastination starts. When you take the initiative to get started on something, even if it’s something small, such as purchasing that coffee machine, getting started is very empowering. 

Think about all of the things you could accomplish if you didn’t procrastinate. You could purchase that coffee machine, finish putting it together, put it in the kitchen, and enjoy it for several years to come.

For most people, though, getting started on any task is difficult, and getting completed on any task becomes more difficult until it becomes impossible. It’s difficult because you don’t want to procrastinate. Research shows that people are influenced by how they see themselves as individuals. The procrastination mindset says, “I’ll never be able to do this. This will turn into a huge project, this will take forever.” 

The good mindset says, “I’ll just deal with it and get through it.” But by realizing that the task is simply a series of easily done steps, the individual quickly realizes that he or she can do what needs to be done in order to get the job done.

Procrastination is also caused by a lack of self-confidence and low self-esteem, and the two are ultimately incompatible. 

The ultimate solution to this problem is to learn to do something you love and do it regardless of what others think of your ability to do it. The reason procrastination causes low self-esteem and the inability to feel valued is that we let our insecurities and weaknesses overshadow our strengths and talents. 

We are all unique individuals and we have the ability to become anything that we put our minds to. When you begin to do things in a manner that makes you feel good about yourself, you will begin to increase your self-esteem and your sense of worth.

In summary, the most effective way to deal with procrastination and its related problems is to stop doing what you’re procrastinating on and start doing something else. Immediately make a plan to get started. 

Begin taking one small step at a time. If you procrastinate another small step, then take three small steps, followed by six, eight, ten, and finally twenty, and immediately after that immediately take a big step and complete the task. 

Do not think about what you are going to do, just do it! Procrastination is directly related to fear; if you can master fear you will be able to master procrastination.