Procrastination is a difficult to stop dead in its track. It wastes so much of your valuable energy, and holds you back from success. It can cause serious problems in your life, career, and success, and even sabotage your dreams. Before you know it, you’ll lose your job, your relationships will suffer, opportunities will be lost, and you will be overcome with stress.
What is Procrastination?
When you procrastinate you’re putting off an important task that you need to complete until a later time. You might make up a million excuses about why you’re putting it off, like you’re too busy, you don’t have enough time, or you don’t have enough details. It’s not that you don’t have enough time, it’s that you don’t make time.
Sometimes it’s easy to get distracted and caught up in useless tasks instead of just completing the task that you’re supposed to work on. When you’re trying to put something off for later, it’s easy to find little things to do to keep yourself occupied like checking your email or your social networks, or even talking on the phone.
Doubting your ability to complete the important task often results in procrastination and can hold you back from success. The things you need to do aren’t going to go away simply because you keep putting them off. Never worry about doing something perfect, just worry about trying. The only way you can truly fail is if you don’t try.
Why You Procrastinate
If you don’t believe you can complete the task or afraid of failing, you might procrastinate to avoid disappointing yourself. Or perhaps you fear success, and the bigger workload that could come along with it. You will regret more of the things you didn’t do in life, than the things you did.
Sometimes people procrastinate because they don’t recognize the value of accomplishing a task, or have a task at hand that they don’t particularly enjoy doing. Just because a task doesn’t interest you, doesn’t mean you should put it off. The sooner you get it done, the sooner you can cross it off your list.
If you have no ambition or desire to complete the task, it can also result in procrastination. When people are lazy, it’s hard to get around to doing something. However, if you don’t complete the task, it will still be the later. Getting out of the way now, will give you more time for the things you enjoy doing.
How to Stop Procrastination Dead in Its Track!
If you want to stop procrastinating, you need to hold yourself accountable for your actions, and just do it. Don’t make any excuses. Just complete the task when you said you would. You can also give yourself added accountability by telling friends and co-workers about your plans to make sure you follow through.
You can’t expect a crippling habit like procrastination to completely disappear overnight. Everything starts with baby steps. Build slowly from one small step today, two small steps tomorrow, and three the next day, and so on. Keep setting small goals for yourself each day to build momentum so that you will have things to cross off your list.
You need to accept that you are not perfect, and neither is anybody else. Give yourself permission to fail, and to learn through tacit knowledge. Tacit knowledge is non-transferable knowledge that you can only learn through your own perceived failures. You can’t learn or succeed without making a few mistakes along the way. Don’t worry that something bad is going to happen. If you don’t succeed, you’ll learn from the experience.
It’s important to understand that procrastination isn’t holding you back, you’re holding you back. Every time you procrastinate, you’re making a conscious decision to do other things instead of doing the important task that needs to be accomplished. You’re making a choice. Just like you’re choosing not to do it, you can reverse it, and choose to get it done.