Many of us know about procrastination – and realize that a simple “Get it and do it” can’t beat it. That’s because procrastination isn’t just laziness. It hides complex mechanisms that set off a chain reaction and we find ourselves scrolling through your Instagram feed and creating a Bizzo Casino login instead of working or going to the gym.
Why Procrastination Occurs
Procrastination is not just laziness. We put off writing an article, preparing a report, or having an important conversation, not because we don’t know that doing it and resting quietly is good, but not doing it and suffering is bad. We put things off because we are afraid of something, because we are unsure of our results, because we no longer see the point in these things. Let’s try to understand the causes of procrastination.
Fear of Failure
This is the most common reason for not embarking on a big, new, difficult task. We do not take on the case, because deep down, we are not confident in our abilities. It seems that in the end we are going to fail anyway.
We quickly get used to both the good and the bad. Especially if it’s not really “bad,” but “basically normal” and “can be tolerated.” Procrastination in this case – as a pebble in the sneaker: you are walking down the street, you notice that something got into your shoes and it is uncomfortable to walk, but for some reason you do not stop and gradually get used to the discomfort.
Boredom and Lack of Reward
This is the situation in which current affairs turn into a routine for us. Over time, we get used to what we do, and the old ceases to please us. You can better understand this situation if you think of children who learn the simplest things and are happy when they succeed, but an adult is unlikely to take pride in knowing how to tie his shoelaces or remember to wash his hands.
In this case, again, it is tempting to call procrastination laziness. However, the thing is a natural reaction of our body to the fact that a person is growing and developing, and the circumstances around him remain the same. When we get used to this or that activity and stop praising ourselves for the result, we become bored.
This boredom is worth taking seriously. If there are too many routine tasks, the rewards for doing them do not grow, and the environment around us does not change, it is possible to really burn out.
Procrastination is provoked by the picture of the perfect result, which we often draw in our head. When there is a feeling that in reality will be worse than in the picture, a person may abandon the case in principle. After you have run a marathon and seemingly already achieved the ideal, it can be difficult to make yourself go out for a two-minute run.
“Too much to do” is another cause of procrastination. You sit down to work, turn on your computer, and immediately you get multiple messages marked “ASAP!” It’s hard to choose what to focus on, so you hover, scroll through your Facebook feed, and do nothing.
This reaction of the body is natural. When there are too many goals, it is hard to prioritize tasks – and the brain simply refuses to do it. Besides, we are under a lot of pressure from the modern cult of productivity. Finally, sometimes a person does not want to take on a task because it does not give him/herself anything.
How to Help Yourself Get Back to Business
A simple “take it and do it,” as we have already found out, will not help cope with procrastination. It is better to start with one small step to gradually get on the right track. Here are a few techniques with which you can make such a step.
It is important to remember that the selection of techniques – a very individual story: it is worth trying a few of them to choose the one that best suits you.
Time management techniques
There are so many techniques to help organize your time – you can choose any. One of the most famous is Pomodoro: the process of completing a large task should be divided into 25-minute segments, with 5-minute breaks in between. The technique is named after the kitchen timer in the form of a tomato, on which the creator of the method, Francesco Cirillo, used to time it.
Focusing on the Process
When you do something just because you enjoy doing it, it’s always easier to get started. So – learn to enjoy the process! This helps well when perfectionism gets in the way and we think we won’t get close to perfect.
How do you shift the focus from the result to the process? Let’s say you ran a marathon six months ago and today you can’t pull yourself out for a run. You say to yourself, “If I run just a couple of miles today, that’s a bad result, I don’t want that. I won’t even try.” But if you don’t set the bar for yourself, but try to imagine yourself jogging leisurely through the park for your own pleasure, you may find that jogging is great. It gives you a chance to get some fresh air, clear your head, put on the uniform you like or your favorite sneakers, observe the nature around you, change your surroundings, and get energized.
When we don’t demand high achievement from ourselves in an activity we like, it’s much easier to focus on what we love about it – and so two kilometers turns into three, and five, and ten.
We may be procrastinating if we’ve taken on too much and are just tired. But sometimes the reason is deeper. At such times, it’s helpful to ask yourself, “Why am I even doing this? Do I need it for myself-or has someone imposed a purpose on me?”.
An express test to help you understand how much you really need to solve a particular problem is Descartes’ square. Try drawing on a sheet of paper two axes that divide space into four zones. In each zone, you need to write the answer to questions like:
- What happens if this happens?
- What happens if it doesn’t happen?
- What won’t happen if it does?
- What won’t happen if it doesn’t happen?
It’s likely that nothing bad will happen if we don’t do what we have planned.
By taking a couple of minutes to do this kind of analysis, we give ourselves the opportunity, first, not to do the unimportant, and second, not to berate ourselves for not doing something. In this way, we conserve resources and allow ourselves to be non-perfect.
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