Why Do We Procrastinate? Five Insights to Why We Put Off Tasks

For many, procrastination is a little bother that crops up from time to time but, for some it is a chronic problem that can be difficult to shake. Little or big the results of procrastination are the same: lost opportunities, mental frustration, increased stress, physical and mental weakness, poor job or school performance, lower self-esteem and the topper, wasted time.

Why do We Procrastinate?

To help answer that question we have to understand that procrastination is more than just poor time management. When things are easy or fun few people have trouble getting them done. Procrastination usually happens with projects that are difficult, overwhelming, complex, or disliked. One debilitating consequence is that in some cases we put off these tasks so long that they never get done. This can cause a cyclical effect that if task are not completed the mental effects cause us to repeat the same procrastinating habits over and over.

Here are five insights or causes of procrastination:

1. Fear of success or failure. The anxiety that sets in at the beginning of a task causes some people to put off even getting started. This feeling of fear can be compounded when you feel not prepared or not up to the task. There are those that worry so much about producing a perfect outcome that they wait until every last bit of research has been done causing the task to be put off sometimes indefinitely. There are some who engage in intricate preparatory or use avoidance tactics before beginning a task. These avoidance activities, such as deciding that all the dishes must be washed and put away before you start your paper, are a way for the mind to justify not completing a task. This allows you to feel OK that you put something off.

2. Overestimating the time left to complete a task is a good example of procrastinating thoughts. An example is if your boss or teacher assigns a research project and gives you three months to complete it. Do you begin on it right away or wait for 2 and a half months to roll by? Many of us see that three months stretching ahead of us and fail to take into account the other tasks that life throws our way. Not allowing yourself to see that there are other things that may come up and that putting a task off until later

3. Underestimating the time required to complete tasks. This is a more subtle form of procrastination. Putting things off because we think that we have plenty of time. Then when you run into snags or the task take more work than anticipated the stress and anxiety can build making it harder to complete the task. Not having a good sense of time is a major cause of procrastination.

4. Believing you must feel a certain way to do a task. Delaying the start of a task until you are in the mood is something that many of us do. Changing the way you think about completing a task can change your mood and boost your self esteem. Think about how you will feel if that project comes in ahead of schedule.

5. Over-reliance on time-saving technology. Computers crash, printers jam, files get lost, and it takes time to actually type out that document. If we understand that these modern devices can sometimes fail we will not rely on them to speed up the task we are trying to complete and that starting right away will allow a cushion if they fail.

Overcoming procrastination can be done easily and quickly. You just need to have the right tools and insight. To get more information and discover a powerful program you can use to break the habit. Visit OvercomeProcrastinationNow.com.