It’s finally a Sunday morning, where you get up at your own pace and slowly open your eyes to the ticking clock. That’s when you realise that previously you have been furiously working on a task that needs to be completed by the next day. While one part of your mind curses you for not starting it early, the other part is stuck in the wonderful world. How did this happen? How could I let it happen? What went wrong where? and so many other questions kept popping up.
Does this sound familiar? Although this is crazy, remember you are not alone! Most think that it is their laziness making them do it all. But no, somewhere close to laziness is procrastination. We all are caught in the trap of procrastination which is not so easy to escape. Procrastination would mean being active. You prefer to engage in one task that you find easier or enjoyable, which could probably be least important than an unpleasant yet important task before you. Procrastination in recent years has turned out to be a growing trend among the youths and working population. More than a trend, procrastination is a game that plays with an individual’s mind and heart.
It is a common question to wonder if there are any specific reasons why people develop such behaviour? There are many causes of which few are found to be common causes of procrastination, such as aiming for abstract goals and feeling overwhelmed. It also includes experiencing feelings of anxiety, depression and failure, holding onto the attitude of perfectionism, developing a lack of control perceptions, disconnecting from future self, being sensation seeking, engaging in task aversion and much more.
In the short run, the habit of procrastination might seem fine, enjoyable, and something that happens quite naturally among all individuals. However, it can turn out sobering later on as things keep piling up. Suppose individuals are not lucky enough to identify the roots of procrastination. In that case, it can have severe and dreadful effects on one’s mental well-being. First, procrastination does not allow individuals to value their precious time. This can lead to them experiencing regret, feeling helpless and frustrated for not taking the right step in the first place.
Second, procrastination gives the individuals a later realisation of how they kicked off the one-time opportunities that were willing to grab them. Third, procrastinating individuals tend to fail to be organised, responsible and further meet their ultimate goals. It pushes individuals to a downward spiral, ruins careers and reduces the possibility of living a better life. Finally, we develop tendencies to procrastinate because our self-esteem produces feelings in us of not being able to get the task done rightfully and effectively. This, in turn, interferes with one’s decision-making and problem-solving abilities, ultimately lowering the score of their reputed personality.
So, what do you think are the essential mind tools you may find effective to defeat the behaviour of procrastination in you? The first step is to realise the patterns of procrastination in you. This will help you get back to things you have been putting off quickly or switch focus to some priorities you have left behind even when they are important, etc. This realisation will also help you be a master of organising and responsibly carrying on with your life events. Second, you need to ask yourself why are you procrastinating. For example, is any task boring or tough such that you keep it for later? Once you identify them, decide which activities you want to engage in that grab your interest and attention.
Third, it is important to refrain from procrastinating but do not blame yourself for that. Instead, let the light of adopting anti-procrastination strategies glow in you by forgiving your previous procrastination habits, committing sincerely to tasks, rewarding yourself at times, minimising distractions, etc. Four, you can be organised by using task-time management apps, set yourself some targets and boundaries, identify the adequate time when your attention is peak to tackle boring yet hardest tasks and always prioritise your important schedules. The ultimate aim to overcome procrastination is to kill the tendencies that make you prone to disorganised and procrastinating patterns.