Anatomy (and Treatment) for Procrastination

By Mae Davies / October 29, 2014
Anatomy (and Treatment) for Procrastination

The best way to cure something is to know the exact cause. That’s been a standing principle for ages because it’s the truth. If you want to solve a problem, you have to start from the source. That’s what good doctors do; they just don’t treat the symptoms because that’s temporary relief. What they cure is the root of the ailment. For example, if you are diagnosed with pneumonia, you’ll be given anti-fever and anti-cough medications, but those are not enough. They will give you antibiotics because they have to get rid of the bacteria that started it all. When it comes to overcoming procrastination, you can be your own doctor. Here are its top 5 causes with their matching cures:

Fear of failure

Some people procrastinate because they feel like they will fail miserably. Don’t think that way. If someone has trusted you to do the job, it’s because you are competent and you have the right set of skills. Don’t insult their choice, but more importantly, don’t insult your abilities. You’re a strong woman who has been through worse; a simple project shouldn’t stand in your way. Overcoming procrastination is easier if you have the confidence.

Pleasure Principle

If you have something you really want to do and you feel like “work” is stopping you from doing it, think again. If it can be done some other time, why do you need to do it now when a task is waiting to be accomplished? Take a deep breath and tell yourself that you won’t get beaten by superficial desires. After work is finished, you’ll enjoy the activity much, much more. procrastination

Too big of a task

Ha! You should be happy about this reason. Imagine a big project handed out to you on a silver platter. It only means that you have showed them what you got. Don’t procrastinate! Do it with passion and let them know that you still have some things up your sleeves. Overcoming procrastination (and a big project) won’t be that hard for an independent lady like you!


It’s good when calories burn, but it’s bad if your energy is drained. You really won’t accomplish anything. The best thing to do is stop the work. And no, it’s not procrastination. It’s called taking a break. Just make sure that there will no longer be next times and avoid burnouts so work flow won’t be disturbed.

Cramming is your way

Others want to be pumped up with adrenaline because they work best that way, so what they do is procrastinate. You have to be careful. What if something unexpected happens and the deadlines are pushed earlier? The best solution is to cram on YOUR OWN deadlines. At least if something went amiss, you’ll have extra time. If overcoming procrastination seems hard for you, procrastinate with less risk. 

You, above anyone else, know yourself. Overcoming procrastination will be an easy feat if you are the one to discover why you do it. After knowing the root of the problem, you can devise your own treatment plan.  

About the author

Mae Davies

BA, MA Psychology (and Conflict Resolution), University of Cambridge (2007). With a decade of trial and error in psychology and 33 years of navigating my own complex (that's one word for it!) relationships with family, friends, co-workers and men, I hope I have some useful knowledge and skills to share with my readers about making sense of relationships and trying to become a better person every day.