Why Do I Procrastinate?
That seems to be the million dollar question doesn’t it? Why do we procrastinate, followed by, can I stop procrastinating? It isn’t the easiest habit to quit but the good news is that it can be done. I have written tips on how we can stop procrastinating at school and at work. However, there are other areas in our lives where we drag things on that should be completed.
We come up with many excuses as to why now isn’t the right time. We are either too busy, tired, broke, stressed, the list can go on. Don’t worry, you are not alone. That is why there are so many quotes about procrastination that I want to share with you (especially the funny ones I’ve found):
“Never put off till tomorrow what may be done day after tomorrow just as well.” ― Mark Twain
“You can’t just turn on creativity like a faucet. You have to be in the right mood. What mood is that? Last-minute panic.” ― Bill Watterson
“Time is an equal opportunity employer. Each human being has exactly the same number of hours and minutes every day. Rich people can’t buy more hours. Scientists can’t invent new minutes. And you can’t save time to spend it on another day. Even so, time is amazingly fair and forgiving. No matter how much time you’ve wasted in the past, you still have an entire tomorrow.” ― Denis Waitley
“You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.” ― Abraham Lincoln
“If it weren’t for the last minute, nothing would get done.” ― Rita Mae Brown
“Procrastination is one of the most common and deadliest of diseases and its toll on success and happiness is heavy.” ― Wayne Gretzky
Want more quotes about procrastination? You can find more funny and motivational quotes at Brainy Quote. The bottom line is that you should avoid putting important tasks aside instead of focusing on achieving them. As one of the quotes above says, we are given the same amount of time each day. When we waste it, we can never gain it back. Don’t allow your life to pass by without accomplishing your goals. We want to begin making meaningful changes in our lives. The future waits on no one!
Don’t Delay – Take Action!
For us to be motivated to stop procrastinating, we need to identify and eliminate the root cause. Ask yourself questions: Am I afraid to fail my assignments so I put off doing them? Am I afraid I won’t be good enough? Am I afraid to lose control of the situation? Whatever the case, once you know why you are afraid to move on in life, you can work on correcting your thinking. This is the first step to success.
When we approach any goal with the wrong perspective, we are setting ourselves for failure. So why not challenge yourself to view each task positively? If you have a big presentation at school or work, break it down into manageable pieces, set a schedule and attack it with enthusiasm. Think about the rewards of accomplishment and the consequences of failure. Use whatever you have around you to help you stay focused on the important things in life. For example, if you find that writing things down work for you, make a priority list and add completion times next to each item. Read through your list several times each day and cross of each item as you complete them. Set yourself a deadline and then hit the ground running. This can be as simple as setting aside time to buy groceries, complete household chores and then work on your YouTube video for your channel or write your next blog post.
There are other tips to help you stay on target in life. Some people work best with others, so why not look for persons that share you goals and inspire you to be proactive? If you need help to be motivated to write, join a Facebook group for writers. Associating with people that are active in the same hobby, curriculum or career as you is a major resource to take advantage of. Telling others about your specific goals, especially those that have been where you are now and have made tremendous strides in life, will help you to stop procrastinating and take action now.
It is important not to let the amount of work you want to accomplish overwhelm you. Spending too much time making lists and schedules is just another form of procrastination. Once you have planned and strategized, clear your environment from distractions and start your work.
Download An “Anti-Procrastinating” App Now!
You may be familiar with the expression, “there’s an app for that” but did you know there are apps to help you stop procrastinating as well? Michael Ansaldo wrote an article on PCWorld called, Read this now: 7 clever mobile apps to beat procrastination. I will highlight a few of the apps and what they do. As a society, we always seem to have our mobile phones on us so why not take advantage of technology to help you pay attention to the important goals in your life:
- Finish – sorts scheduled tasks into short-term (within 0-2 days,) mid-term (3-7 days,) and long-term (8 days and over) due dates. As the time advances, your tasks move through the term blocks, and you receive reminders along the way. Finish also offers “Focus Mode” which shows you your most urgent tasks in each term block and collapses the rest.
- AppDetox – helps you manage your mobile app usage. It enforces blockage rules for individual apps. You set the detox terms for example, restrict the number of launches, block an app during specific times of day or days of the week, etc. If you try to use a blocked app, you’ll get a reminder. AppDetox keeps time-stamped records of your violations.
- Procraster – prompts you to identify your procrastination source and gives you advice about the problem. It uses prompts and short-term rewards to help you tackle projects one task at a time. Procraster can be configured to add completed sessions to your calendar. That way, you can track your productive time and use it as personal motivation.
There are also programs and browser add-ons you can download to avoid internet distraction. Examples of programs include Freedom, Self-Control, Cold Turkey and StayFocused.
Need More Tips To Help You Stop Procrastinating?
Other tips to help you stop procrastinating in all aspects in life include:
- Remove your phone from the area you are working if its is a hindrance to you.
- Ask others for help. This list can include family, friends, centers, groups or whoever can help motivate you to stay on track.
- Reset ourselves. If we are confronted with an obstacle, take a step back, go somewhere quiet and think about what can help you concentrate. On an earlier post, I discuss in detail natural oils you can use to help increase your focus found here.
- Create a visible chart with your goals and how you will achieve them. The more you visualize what you want, the easier it will be to fulfill your goals.
- Be honest with yourself. This means not deluding yourself into thinking you can finish a comprehensive project the night before.
As you conquer the challenge of quitting procrastinating, you will see and experience immediate and long-term benefits. Don’t believe me? Check out this brilliant summary by Tim Urban of Ted Talks titled, “Inside the Mind of a Master Procrastinator:”
No Time To Waste!
We want to experience the most out of life as possible. Don’t waste any of it on tasks that can be completed right away. The “waiting until later” attitude always results in more stress, low self-esteem, feelings of failure, the list goes on. As you determine why you procrastinate and figure out which solutions work best for you, keep in mind that you need patience initially. Slowly change your attitude and outlook towards distractions and your behavior will also adjust. Don’t expect immediate results or be too hard on yourself if things don’t work out right away.
As you replace your bad habits with positive habits and begin to see practical results, they will be all the motivation you need to continue seizing each day!
If you have any other tips to help prevent procrastinating, please feel free to share in the comments below!
Remember, quitting isn’t always a bad thing!