Procrastination is the act of unnecessarily postponing decisions or actions. There are many reasons why we procrastinate, including fear of failure, feeling overwhelmed, perfectionism, avoidance of discomfort, and lack of motivation. Procrastination can have negative consequences, such as stress, anxiety, and decreased productivity. There are a number of strategies that can be used to overcome procrastination, such as breaking down tasks into smaller steps, setting deadlines, and rewarding yourself for completing tasks.
Why do we postpone important tasks?
Do you postpone important and necessary tasks? Sometimes you plan something, promise yourself to complete it, to see it through, to make it mandatory! – but then you don’t do it. You postpone. You find excuses for yourself. You scold yourself and swear again to do it tomorrow. Or in an hour. And then you postpone again…
Nowadays this is called “procrastination.” And a plethora of good advice is given: you need to plan more carefully. Try harder! Write everything down and complete tasks one by one. And you’ve probably tried this.
And it’s gotten even worse.
Of course, for some people, making a plan and self-discipline helped. But most often, procrastination returns and intensifies. And the promises you make to yourself remain unfulfilled. As does the work.
One writer confessed – when she needed to write the preface to her book, she cleaned the whole apartment. She washed the windows too. Did the laundry. Sorted out the things in the closets. Baked a pie. And then sat down at the table with the pie and cried out of hatred for herself – she never wrote the preface. She wrote a thick book, but the preface – she kept postponing and could not write…
There’s an Eastern wisdom: the promises we intend to keep, the plans we sincerely want to implement, the tasks we set for ourselves – they are a burden. A load. And we heave this load onto our backs.
Each promise is another bag.
We haven’t even taken a step, and we’ve already burdened ourselves with heavy bags. “Tomorrow I must definitely do this! And this! And this too! And this as well, – I’ve been putting it off, but tomorrow I will do it for sure!”. And with this bag, we head into tomorrow.
There are people who don’t need to make detailed plans or write a daily schedule. Yes, I need to finish writing an article. I remember. I’ll write it when I’m ready.
Yes, I need to prepare for an interview. Let me look at the topics, see what’s written there. I’ll go through as much as I can, then read some more later.
I decided to go for a run in the morning, but I never start. Well, today I’ll just go outside and walk quickly. If I want to – I’ll run. If I don’t want to – I won’t run…
Such people need to take it easier, be more relaxed about their tasks. And plan gently, without violence against oneself. And do what’s important bit by bit. Not to immediately burden one’s back with a heavy sack, which is frightening just to look at and takes away the joy of life.
You simply don’t want to do what you planned. Your brain resists and repels the task. And you burden yourself with obligations and promises, draining your strength in advance…
You’re not a weak-willed person. On the contrary, most often. When you really want something with all your heart, you do it excellently and quickly. But your strong will resists your own commands when it comes to unnecessary or uninteresting tasks. You resist yourself. Procrastination is a conflict between reason and will.
The more you force yourself, the worse the result. Writing a boring preface is dull. Uninteresting. Your heart isn’t in it. And running early in the morning is boring and hard. But if you start – you’ll slowly get into it. Step by step. Start with a walking pace, then move on to a brisk walk. And then you can run if you want. If you have the strength…
…And you’ll have the strength if you don’t force yourself in advance with promises and vows, plans, and coercion. Maybe you are exactly the person who shouldn’t make plans and force yourself to do something. Don’t load your cart with the heavy burden of promises and demands. And it will become easier to do what’s needed.
But trust yourself, nevertheless. And think: maybe you resist so desperately precisely because you don’t need it? A tortured preface that nobody reads? Or a run through dusty and dirty streets that could be replaced by swimming in a cool pool? Or work that will bring money but deprive you of something more important and valuable? You won’t start your business, won’t make a movie, won’t spend another six months to a year with your child?..
You need to honestly ask yourself this question. Sometimes the whole matter is exactly in this…