Understanding Procrastination

How to avoid procrastination would have seemed pretty for a tittle  

It sounds so elegant, simple and straightforward

But it’s not…

For most of us, procrastination is that strong, mysterious force that keeps us from completing the most urgent and important tasks

It is usually confused with laziness, but it is technically not the same

The reasons people procrastinate, and how to manage, are not understood that well.

“Procrastination is a natural part of life” one author wrote,


…but Ill like to add that even though everyone may procrastinate at one time or the other, not everyone is a procrastinator.

Research shows that about 9 in 10 working adults procrastinate and 2 of these adults classify themselves as master procrastinators. The numbers are a bit higher for students as 5 in 10 students classify themselves as master procrastinators.


It’s a tough habit to break, particularly these days when the internet allows us to literarily run away from important tasks

Procrastination can be detrimental, in various ways to both the physical health and the mental health

… but procrastination is not always bad.

It can be a key to innovation (for example, Steve Jobs has been said to use procrastination to increase innovation).

First, what are the potential reasons we procrastinate. This is not exhaustive. Visit 360 Psyche for more. If you see a reason that applies to you, check the box because we will be talking about ways to manage

Reasons People Procrastinate

  1. Fear or anxiety about the important task awaiting us.
  2. We want it to be perfect and would not do anything not perfect
  3. You are focused on the present benefits that the distant Reward
  4. The task feels overwhelming
  5. Sometimes we want to rebel against authority
  6. Underestimation of Time
  7. High level of distractibility
  8. Indecisiveness
  9. Self-sabotaging
  10. A perceived lack of control

How To Manage Procrastination

Here are three tips to help you manage procrastination. Note this, I didn’t say stop, its not as easy as ABC. I said manage

But here are the ABC


The first steps to changing an habit is recognizing when you do it. You need to ask yourself these three important questions

  1. When do I procrastinate?
  2. How do I procrastinate? 
  3. Why do I procrastinate? 

In addition, we need to note how we are talking to ourselves. These statements are strong pointers that you are most likely going to procrastinate “I don’t know how to do it”, I am not in the mood”, “I know I can pull this out at the last minute”, “I just can’t seem to get started”,  “I’m just waiting for the best time to do it”, “it doesn’t take so much time to do”

Break tasks into small bits:

I like this quote “No one ‘builds a house,” “They lay one brick again and again and the end result is a house. Ask yourself “if I were to take action right now, what’s the smallest possible step I could take?”.

Control the impulse to procrastinate:

Count to 10 before indulging the impulse to procrastinate. Recognize that you don’t have to be in the mood to do a certain task — just ignore how you feel and get started. Starting can be the most difficult part

These are my ABC to manage procrastination.

Remember to forgive yourself for past procrastination. Procrastinators feel more extreme shame and guilt. But for an extreme procrastinator, those negative feelings can be just another reason to put the task off, with the behavior turning into a vicious, self-defeating cycle.

But when you forgive yourself, it reduces the chance of future procrastination

Everyone has a bit of crazy… Until I come your way next time, don’t forget to keep learning about your brand of crazy.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll Up