Procrastination could be the enemy of seizing the moment and the old saying of “carpe diem!”. Certainly Edward Young said “Procrastination is the thief of time!” Procrastination is effectively delaying or putting off doing something or doing a task. The reason for procrastinating or taking this delaying tactic with whatever you’re doing can be put down to a variety of reasons.
The reasons for procrastination can include:
You may feel you have too much to do and can’t face starting something as you believe the amount to get through and complete is unsurmountable.
You may believe you can’t actually do the task at hand.
Rather than try or perhaps ask for assistance you take the procrastination route and choose to not to the task at all or…
You may choose to do a task that is far easier to do leaving the harder task for another time.
This is perhaps a great example of a scenario where procrastination takes place. The problem with this is that you may again choose to procrastinate or defer doing that same task when the easier task has been completed or another easier task comes along.
The task may appear to be boring…
…or a chore, or not particularly pleasant and you don’t feel like doing that task at all.
There is always something better to do…
…like watching your favourite TV programme or another activity.
You believe you have plenty of time to handle or tackle the outstanding task at hand.
For example delaying writing that essay (if you’re a student) until the night before.
- Laziness. I’m guilty of this sometimes. There are days when you just can’t be bothered to do something. This particular example can be a mix of 1,2 or 3 things above. For example you may leave the unwashed dishes in the sink as it’s a chore, and you have other things on the list which are just as stressful but you’ll get to that after you’ve done something else.
Does any of this sound like you? We’ve all been there and perhaps some of the above apply to you and you can relate to these procrastination examples.
Procrastinating does not solve the actual problem at hand, namely starting and / or completing a task that you’re putting off. Eventually the task will have to be done and if it isn’t or hasn’t been done then there may be consequences or an explanation will be needed to say why something hasn’t been done. This is especially the case for matters concerning work.
Why Allow Procrastination to cause worry and stress?
These situations can be even more unnecessary stress. Procrastination can create a sense of “everything is alright, I can leave this task for another day” or “this deadline is a long way away”. Eventually time catches up with you, that deadline is hours or days away and you may not have started a task because of procrastinating. The stress can increase if this procrastination causes conflict with someone else because a task wasn’t completed on time or at all. As above, an example of where this could happen is in the workplace or at school or college.
The problem with procrastinating is that it does not resolve the problem at hand or get the task done. It will still be waiting for you whether it’s the next day or next week etc. If you want to overcome your procrastination and avoid doing tasks or work in a deadline induced panic as per the image above, read on…