In this article what is procrastination about I give you my take on it. I talk about the difference between laziness and procrastination and how I got out of both of them. Keep reading if you’ve got yourself into a procrastination cycle as I will give you the way out.
READING TIME: 10 Mins. Or JUMP AND SKIM
I kid you not, I actually started to procrastinate while trying to write this. While researching I got overloaded with the amount of information out there about it.
Mmmm. That could have been part of the cause. Overwhelmed with information?
Nope. To be honest, just before I started the research I watched 3 episodes of Bosch online.
I got distracted before I got distracted. If you know what I mean.
But as soon as I realized that I needed to put the breaks on the research and just do the actual writing, I just pulled up a blank page and started typing.
I got going, but then I began thinking, I’ve started, now what? I haven’t even done a rough outline. But I’m scared to move away from my keyboard now that I’ve actually started writing.
It feels like I’m ranting. I am ranting. Let me rewind. First things first.
I can hear you, “Why spend time reading this article about procrastination, what makes it so different?”
This is why.
I’m going to give you my unique experience with procrastination and laziness. Including how I beat it. I am more inspired and motivated when I’m reading a person’s experience rather than a bunch of statistics or lists.
It’s the real deal. Especially when they (me in this case) tell you how they practically applied techniques and overcame it. Which is exactly what I do towards the end.
Procrastination is super common and it’s on the increase! This is possibly because it is SO easy to surf the internet and binge-watch a cool show or movie, rather than do something worthwhile. Who knows really?
I want to share my experience plus give some tips on beating it. Well, the ones that worked for me.
Obviously, I finally got my outline, sort of, from bashing words onto my keyboard randomly just to get going. I did feel myself moving away and looking over at the kitchen at one point….
(Inner Voice) ”Do not move away from the keyboard. Keep your hands where I can see them. Just keep writing. That’s it. Nice and steady now.”
(Obviously, watched too much Bosch.)
Difference Between Procrastination And Laziness
Is there a difference? Absolutely.
Take writing as an example. I’ve been known to clean my whole flat from top to bottom rather than write. That is procrastination. I put off one task to do another. Nowt lazy there.
To be clear.
Laziness is when you have something to do and you have nothing else to do. But you choose to not do the thing.
On the other hand, procrastination is when you have a job, chore, or piece of work to do. But you put it off in favor of doing another task.
The cute sloth below is a Downloadable Poster – Grab it if you want it.
The Cycle Of Procrastination
So, if you get on the procrastination merry-go-round then laziness could take over.
Literally, procrastination will make you lazy. Let me explain what I mean.
I procrastinated for so long I ended up doing nothing productive or useful in my life. I became lazy. I did nothing apart from the necessary things like work and eating.
I blame The Wire.
Okay, no I don’t.
”I do a little bit, because it was so darn good I couldn’t stop watching it”
Seriously, at that time in my life, I had lots of important stuff to do that I just didn’t do. I went through the motions of doing other tasks and ignored the important things. That was my procrastination phase.
After going through that phase and a long while later, I stopped doing those things and distracted myself with movies and TV. I did nothing and became lazy.
How did I get my lump out of my slump?
Break The Cycle Of Procrastination
I did a George Costanza! In the episode from Seinfeld titled The Opposite the character George has a revelation:
“Yes, I will do the opposite. I used to sit here and do nothing, and regret it for the rest of the day, so now I will do the opposite, and I will do something!”
George Costanza (from Seinfeld)
I started to realize that I was being lazy, wasting time and my life was boring. I’d gone way past procrastination. The prolonged procrastination turned into pure laziness.
I went to work. Ate. Watched TV. Or a movie. Slept. And did it all over again. And again. I’m surprised that my alarm didn’t start to go off every day spouting Sonny and Cher’s I Got You Babe.
Groundhog Day had nothing on me.
I decided to do a George Costanza. But where to start? Reverse engineer my life?
I stopped the latest things I was doing and worked backwards from there. I stopped watching mindless TV and movies. I replaced my habit of eating unhealthily and started making my own meals. Whatever I had been doing, I stopped and did the opposite. You get the gist.
I finally got moving again and out of the lazy phase. I did the opposite and by doing that I did something.
I was now out of the laziness and in the procrastination phase. Next, I had to work out why I procrastinated in the first place.
Why Do I Procrastinate?
“I procrastinated because I believed the illusion.”
Okay, so at this stage in my story, I’m relieved as I’m out of the lazy phase and moved into procrastination. I’m still not doing the really important life-changing stuff that will propel me forward in my life.
Something else is going. After investigating and discovering the most common reasons people procrastinate I saw a pattern.
That pattern pointed to an illusion of some sort.
“Meh”, you say. Stay with me.
When it comes to procrastination articles on the internet they include things like perfectionism, fear of failure, lack of interest, etc.
“Meh”, I say. And here’s why
Better still, look at my mind map while I explain my statement:
- Low self-esteem and low self-worth are internal and how you PERCEIVE yourself in your mind.
- PERCEPTION is what you interpret through your senses (see, hear, touch, taste, smell).
Senses are created in your mind by you.
- These PERCEPTIONS are ILLUSIONS in your mind.
- IMPORTANT: I’m not saying that your fear or self-worth issues are not real. (Mine were very real to me). Illusion does not mean it is not real for you.
It means your illusion can be changed so that you can stop procrastinating.
In other words.
RED BOX = Change your PERCEPTION and you can change your PERSPECTIVE (your way of seeing things, your point of view).
Change your PERCEPTION AND YOU CAN CHANGE ALMOST ANYTHING, not just your procrastination.
And that’s why I said, “I procrastinated because I believed the illusion.”
Can I Reduce Procrastination?
YES! I did and so can YOU.
You can probably guess by now how I beat procrastination. I stopped believing the illusions about myself and life. Those illusions were fear of failure and perfectionism. Both left me immobilized.
Plus I had a deep rooted belief that I was not good enough or worthy enough.
Trying to write something like this article would have been impossible before. I’d have had thoughts like “People won’t want to read your stuff.” “Who do you think you are you phoney?”
In 2 steps I beat procrastination (But not in 2 heartbeats, it wasn’t something that happened overnight. Yes, it can be done but it takes time and commitment):
- I realized the illusions in my mind were self-limiting beliefs and thoughts that could be changed
- I dug them out of my subconscious and changed them to beneficial beliefs and thoughts that supported the life I wanted, which included no more procrastination.
”You just said no more procrastination, perleeease.”
Okay, okay. I might have been a bit hasty there. I get a bit over excited when I talk about this changing your mind stuff. That statement might be a bit strong.
Rephrasing now. I procrastinate from time to time still. But it’s different now. How so? Well, I procrastinated a little before writing this. The key there is “a little”. It was a very short time, not stretching into another day, week, month, or year.
And more importantly, I recognised it, had a word with myself and put stuff in place to move forward.
Which leads me nicely on to my 7 proven tips on beating procrastination.
7 Proven Tips On Beating Procrastination
Take the tips relevant to you for where you’re at (I recommend #7 for lasting change).
DOWNLOAD the InfoGraph and stick it where you can see it 😉
- Be kind and tell yourself: I’m not really lazy, I just let the procrastination go too far.
- The lazy phase: Do the opposite and Do Something to get your lump out of your slump.
- Start as you mean to go on: On waking write a to-do list for that day. Block out the time with actions to take you through to the end of your day. (Actions include things you want to get done, breaks, eating, include everything.)
- Tell yourself I’m going to do this for an hour and then I can stop: Set an alarm to go off in an hour. And Just Start.
- An important, boring task to do: DO IT FIRST BEFORE anything else. Use the alarm method to get going on it.
- A big project to do: Break it down into small chunks. Write it out. Type it out. Do it chunk by chunk.
- Discover why you procrastinate: If you really want to beat procrastination you need to discover why. Uncover your subconscious programs, your non-beneficial beliefs that support your behavior e.g. procrastination. And change them!
Final Thoughts On Procrastination
I’m not saying that procrastination is bad. In this world there is a yin and a yang to most things. Maybe you’re procrastinating because you want to delay something while you think of other options? Bad and good are a matter of perspective.
There’s that word again. 😲
However, if your procrastination is not benefitting you then know that you can do something about it. Whether that’s something right now or something more permanent.
Look, most people experience procrastination. And if you haven’t ever experienced it. Who are you?
Go back to Mars, because you must be an alien
Something I didn’t mention is the thrill-seeker procrastinator. They want the thrill of leaving it (anything) until the last minute to add excitement and a bigger challenge. However, the outcome can go either way. It can push you into completing a tedious task. Or, rushing it could lead to not creating your best work. Just something to bear in mind if you a possible thrill-seeker procrastinator that says to yourself:
“I’m not a procrastinator. I just prefer doing all my work in a fear-induced panic”
What is procrastination about for me? Now, I occasionally procrastinate but not for very long because I’ve learned to recognize when I’m doing it and stop. Changing my mindset and my perceptions have literally change my life, including how I deal with procrastination.
I used to put the Pro in Procrastinator. 😉
But not anymore.
What Next For You?
Here are some ideas:
- Print out the Free cute sloth Poster
- Print out the Free Infograph – 7 Proven Tips To Beating Procrastination – Stick it where you can see it
- Read my blog post about how the subconsious mind works
- Read my blog posts about low self-esteem and how to start building it back up
- Check out the 3 Books on procrastination that I reviewed
- If you are ready to change your mind, get yourself one of the many audio programs to listen to. I did a review of a company called InnerTalk who have created over 300 audio programs, check them out.
- And lastly, don’t believe the illusion!
The name of The Game is Experience so let us experience Connecting and Sharing.
Tell me a your procrastination story or give me a comment related to this article below.
Save THIS PIN below to your Procrastination Tips or Self-Worth or Personal Growth Board to check later and have the information easily at your finger tips.