What is procrastination? Why is overcoming procrastination so important?
Procrastination is a very wonderful thing to do while you’re doing it, but it can give you a lot of headaches the moment you need to face its consequences. Procrastination technically means putting off something – a task, a work or a duty which you must do or need to accomplish – but you just don’t feel like doing it right now.
When we’re in the habit of always procrastinating, all, if not most, of the aspects of our lives, become greatly affected. That’s why learning how to overcome procrastination is really important; because our work and career, our relationships, our cognitive and psychological experiences, and even the quality of life that we live can be greatly affected if we always procrastinate.
So before everything in your life gets messed up, it’s time you need to learn the importance of overcoming procrastination so that you can change this habit once and for all.
Top Benefits of Beating Procrastination
But why is overcoming procrastination important? Here are some of the reasons:
1. You can beat the deadline
Overcoming procrastination is one of the secrets to beating your deadlines. When you need to work on something within a limited time, not procrastinating will warrant that you submit your task, work or report on time. It will also guarantee that whatever work you do is of good quality (and that it’s not just hastily made or just made for the sake of compliance), because you’ll have more time to work on it.
2. It makes you more productive
When you overcome procrastination, you will be more productive, since you’ll be able to do more because you won’t be wasting time. You’ll have more output, increased production, and little to no backlogs. Not procrastinating will allow you to attend to the most important things that need your attention.
3. You’ll make the most of your time
When you don’t procrastinate, you’ll not simply become productive; you’ll also make the most out of your time because you’ll be able to maximize your time. Overcoming procrastination won’t let you waste time and energy with the unimportant things. Furthermore, it will also test and improve your time management skills and your way of handling things because you’ll learn how to spend your time and your energies wisely.
4. You’ll gain a lot more when not procrastinating
According to Stephen Richards, “Habitual procrastinators will readily testify to all the lost opportunities, missed deadlines, failed relationships and even monetary losses incurred just because of one nasty habit of putting things off until it’s often too late.” Indeed, we lose a lot when we are in the habit of always procrastinating. Putting things off will makes us miss many things in life.
Learning how to overcome procrastination will ensure that everything that we have to do is done right – and on time – so we don’t have to miss out on something because we don’t have any backlogs and pending tasks to work on. All that we have to do in the end is to just sit back, relax and enjoy the fruits of our labor.
5. There’s less stress
Not procrastinating equals less stress and less worry. Just imagine all the stress that comes with making sure that you need to finish all your backlogs in a very limited time; just because you’ve been procrastinating for so long. Not fun, eh? That’s why overcoming procrastination is very important.
When you don’t procrastinate, you don’t have to freak out – because you’ve been doing your work or task – and all that needs to be done is to submit it on the deadline. You’ll have less chance of stressing out and worrying whether you’ll make it to the deadline or not because you’ve already done everything that needs to be done.
Overcoming procrastination is important, because it won’t only curtail an unproductive habit, but it’ll also improve the way that you handle and live your life. And if you’re really determined to overcome procrastination, always remember this rule: Never put off until tomorrow what you could do today.
Overcoming Procrastination: Can’t Do It? or Won’t Do It?
When there’s a task right in front of you, what do you do? Do you jump at the opportunity to finish it right then and there, or do you wait a few more minutes, or hours, or days? It may be a bad idea to start right away. That can be considered careless.
You have to think if you’ve all the things you’ll need to make the task not just a “completed” project but a “completely awesome” project. But when you’ve accomplished the checklist and still refuse to do the job, it’s no longer called careful; it’s called procrastination. As a woman of high skills and competence, you shouldn’t fall for that trap.
Here are some tips for overcoming procrastination:
Don’t make excuses
You’ll know it when you do it. Is your reason valid, or is it all just bluster? If it’s valid, you’ll feel peaceful. If it’s just a sorry excuse to do something that’s more interesting for you, you’ll feel that little conscience tugging at your heart. Be a woman of conviction; excuses are not for you. There’s no greater reason to stop making excuses than simply admitting that it’s bad, and you don’t do bad.
A deadline is a law
Overcoming procrastination aims for you to not just follow the law but for you to abide by it with zest and dedication. The best person for any job is someone who’s willing to travel the extra mile to give her best. The deadlines are there because they keep the workflow running smoothly. One missed deadline can produce a bad domino effect.
Being the smart woman that you are, try not to just beat the deadlines; submit a task before the deadline. It’ll show everyone how productive you’re and what an asset you can be.
Don’t bite off more than what you can chew
People tend to procrastinate not just when the job is too easy; they also do it when the job is too big. Complicated tasks should be broken down into several simple pieces. The unspoken rule of taking everything one step at a time is one sure way to overcome procrastination. You’re in control; don’t let the jobs take the wheel away from you.
When a task is given to you, take responsibility. The reason they gave you the job is because they see you as the reliable lady that you are. Don’t disappoint them, but more importantly, don’t disappoint yourself. Overcoming procrastinationtells you to own things, so when tasks turn out to be wonderfully successful, you can proudly say, “It’s so successful because it’s mine.”
One of the reasons why you’re tempted to procrastinate is because of burn out. If you’ve a valid time, use it to recharge. You deserve it, so why not take it?
Overcoming procrastination may not be easy, but it’s not impossible. All you need is patience, determination, and a starting step. The patience and the dedication, you’ve got it alright. Just work on starting now and you’ll be succes
How does procrastination hold you back?
You think of them as simple pleasures, some things that you don’t want to deny yourself of. Or maybe you see them as “motivation” before a hard day’s work. What you don’t know is you’re already thinking wrong. When you’ve a “little” job to do, and you’ve a “lot” of time on your hands, the tendency is to procrastinate.
You have to stop. “It’s just an easy job and I have all week to do it” is one way of saying that you’re not serious, you’re not reliable, and you don’t want the job. Here are the top 5 ways by which procrastination holds you back:
1. It kills time
It lures you into thinking that you’ve a lot of time. The moment you succumb into the trap, it’ll be too late to realize that the time you should have spent on doing what’s important has been lost on trivial, fleeting things. The goal of overcoming procrastination is for you to treasure time. Time is important; allot it for important matters.
2. It ruins your reputation
If you make it a hobby, you’re digging your own hole. Your co-workers and the people around you’ll feel like you’re too superficial. They won’t trust you with bigger tasks because they’ll conclude that you won’t take it seriously. Prove them wrong. You’re an independent woman, one who can accomplish a task with grace under pressure. Start by overcoming procrastination and you’ll be on your way to a promotion.
3. Procrastination throws you off
When you procrastinate, you’re refusing to train your mind.
You’ll be too content, too adjusted, that your mind will be complacent. The only thing you’ll find by the end of the day is a job done with only half your heart. Be the competent lady that you are, focus on the task at hand, and come out victorious because you’ve done it great and you’ve learned something important out of it.
4. It will only give you a broken heart
An assignment done after procrastinating isn’t something you can be proud of. You’ll end up thinking that you could have done something much, much better than what you’ve submitted. But what else can you do? Time was lost and so was the chance. Don’t give yourself heartache because of regret; be on your way to stop procrastinating.
5. It’s dangerous
No, that isn’t an exaggeration. Procrastination is really dangerous. It can cost you your job. Imagine not having submitted something that’s so simple because you thought you had more time. What if that simple thing turns out to be one big deal when not submitted on the deadline? Don’t lose your job. You’re a skilled woman who’s capable of taking on the world when motivated to trudge on the right direction.
Value your time, your character, and your competence. Doing so will give you a great advantage.
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’ve 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’re 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’re competent and you’ve 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’ve the confidence.
If you’ve 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.
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’ve 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’re the one to discover why you do it. After knowing the root of the problem, you can devise your own treatment plan.
Not a Good Combination – Procrastination and You
Procrastination is an ugly word. When you do it, people will call you “lazy.” In some instances, they are wrong. Some people just like to wait until the time is “right.” It means that they look thoroughly before leaping and they analyze every angle to achieve the best results. That is called precision.
How do you differentiate between precision and procrastination? If you’ve exhausted all the avenues to be able to do a certain task, and you feel bad about not being able to do it, congratulations! That’s far from procrastinating. But, if you stop altogether without even trying, you’ve got a big problem. Check out the list below:
- Can it be done now?
- Do you’ve everything you need to do it now?
- Are you feeling well?
- Do you think it’s too easy of a task?
- Do you still have time?
If all your answers are “yes” and you choose to not do a project “now,” then you’re definitely procrastinating! Simply put, to procrastinate is “avoiding” doing a task that you can actually do at the soonest possible time, which is now! Commonly, you won’t do it because you can do something that’s more pleasurable, like watch a movie, dine out, or sleep (even when you’re not feeling sleepy).
Who can blame you? Sometimes it’s just so easy to forget about all the stress and life pressures. All you want to do is stay in bliss. But look at it this way: that something that is pleasurable can become even more pleasurable if you do it when all your tasks are done!
Overcoming procrastination may be difficult, so try to challenge yourself into finding your own effective ways. See the pleasurable activity as a reward. Tell yourself something like this: “If I get this job done wonderfully, I’ll really, really splurge on_____________.” You name it. What do you want to splurge on? Food? Movies? Sleep? If you finish a job, the reward will be well deserved. In other words, it feels better than doing it BEFORE anything is accomplished.
To further motivate you to overcome procrastinating, follow this rule: expect the unexpected. Yes, you may have a lot of time on your hands now, and the job is fairly easy, but what if tomorrow is a blast and the easy task gets buried under more pressing matters. Before you know it, the easy task is forgotten and the deadline is missed. Now you’ll utter the ugliest words in history, “If only I had…”
Overcoming procrastination should start now. Don’t start tomorrow; start right this minute. Pick up a pen and a notepad and write down things that you’ve to accomplish by the end of the week. Prioritize them and if you can do something now, do it so that there can be one task crossed out on your list.
Just imagine how overcoming procrastination can give you a good weekend!
Steps in Overcoming Procrastination
Being successful in life is demanding, especially for women. Ladies have to work twice, if not thrice, as hard as a competent man to be able to reach a fruitful destination. Companies have already discovered the gem that is “girl power” within independent females. You’re already on your way; people believe in your skills and dedication.
But the job doesn’t end there; if you get too complacent, you might just lose the hard-earned spot. You have to make sure than when a project is assigned to you, it won’t just be finished on time; it’ll be completed with your indelible mark in there. Overcoming procrastination can be done by doing the following steps:
1. Set your goals straight
Prioritize what has to be done tomorrow and what has to be done within a week. Whether in work or in business, prioritization of tasks is a must. Write down the top 5 things that NEED to be finished. The others not included on the list can wait. Focus on the principle of first things first. Overcoming procrastination is easier when you know your goals.
2. Delegate the tasks on 6th and below
You already have the top 5 priorities; that’s a good start. Now look at the rest of your checklist. Do you’ve any assignments there that can be delegated? If someone else can be trusted to do the job, you can delegate; it’s not a sin. Procrastination can creep easily on your mind if you’re too tempted to “cheat” because of large volumes of workload. One step in overcoming procrastination is correct and timely delegation.
3. Make your own deadlines
The greatest battles won are the ones you fought with yourself. If the deadline is within this week, move the deadline a little earlier. Try to finish the task within 3-4 days. Challenge yourself into beating YOUR deadlines, not just the deadlines assigned by the company.
4. Don’t overdo it
In connection to No. 2, overdoing can only give you stress because you’ll feel like you’re too loaded. More than that, a tired mind can reduce the quality of your work. If you’ve already set your own deadlines, go through with it. “The REAL deadline is within this week; MY deadline is within 4 days.” That’s good. No need to be perfect and finish it before the 4th day. Overcoming procrastination doesn’t include suicide, just determination to go through your own goals.
5. Have faith
This is the most important ingredient in overcoming procrastination. There are instances where schedules are ruined and plans fail. It’s not because you overlooked something or you did things the wrong way. They just happen. Don’t be in despair and move back into your procrastinating habit. Stand up and overcome the difficulties; you can do it! If someone believes in your skills, what’s your excuse to not believe in yourself?
Success is originally a steady target. You’ll be moving towards it using your confidence, competence, patience, and dedication. Don’t let it move away by procrastinating!
5 Secrets to Overcoming Procrastination
The habit of putting tasks off until the last minute is what we refer to as procrastination. Procrastination, if not dealt with, can lead to many disadvantages and can cause us to develop unproductive habits that can greatly affect our lives. The degree of procrastinations varies from person to person.
Some may simply put off a task until tomorrow, but there are also some people who’ve become chronically affected by it to the extent that their success and careers are affected. Although the degree of procrastination varies from person to person, one thing is true to everyone – procrastination is a destructive habit, which is why overcoming procrastination is important.
Overcoming procrastination may seem difficult at first; but it’s not impossible. Here are some secrets to effectively overcome procrastination:
1. Recognize the fact that you’re procrastinating
The first step in overcoming procrastination is to recognize that you’re procrastinating. Like other bad habits that you may have, procrastination thrives whenever you’re in denial that you’re doing it. Recognition of a bad habit, and your acceptance of it, is the starting point towards making a change for the better within yourself.
2. Manage your time well
Time management is the key to overcoming procrastination. When you know how to manage your time efficiently and effectively, you’ll be able to spend your time wisely.
To manage your time well, make sure that you plan your activities ahead and you devote an ample amount of time to every activity. It’s also good to have a journal or planner to help you keep track of all your deadlines, and of all the tasks and activities that you’ve to attend to.
3. Stick to your Schedule
Planning ahead and managing your time well isn’t enough to overcoming procrastination; application is also important. Now that you’ve practiced time management and have a planner to guide you in implementing it, the next thing that you must do is to stick to your schedule. To overcome procrastination requires you to follow your schedule; because it’s only by sticking to it that you won’t be putting any task on hold or do nothing – even when you’ve a lot of things to do.
4. Practice self-discipline and self-control
Practicing self-discipline is also important. You won’t be able to do the tasks that you’ve to do now (and not later) if you don’t have any self-discipline. Discipline teaches you to become responsible and to have structure and stability in your life. Aside from discipline, self-control is also important to overcome procrastination, since doing this requires a certain degree of self-restraint in order for you to remain focused on performing the task at hand.
5. Live by this motto: “Don’t put off until tomorrow what can be done today”
Benjamin Franklin couldn’t have said it any better. In order to beat procrastination, you must not wait until the 11th hour. Do what needs to be done today – and do as much as you can possibly do today. Waiting for inspiration, waiting for tomorrow, and waiting for a ‘Eureka’ moment isn’t the best way to complete your tasks – because you’ll have to constantly put off the things that have to be done in order to attend to unexpected events.Before you go, we'd love to hear from you in the comments below. I'm working hard to build a community here and a big part of that are your contributions! If you have experiences to share, questions, comments, suggestions, or anything else, please leave us a quick comment. I promise to reply!