Chain of Procrastination
By Jessica Manuel
Your life is not an exemption from the chain of procrastination. I don’t gamble, but, I bet that you do this, and when you think you got it figured out, it shackles you up again.
Why do I assume that? Because I do it. Our society is fast-paced, filled with distractions and everyone wants your time and energy. Everything seems important and with a society full of people that want to be appreciated by others, we pressure ourselves to do everything.
The definition of Procrastination is popular in all of us, more than we like to admit. I remember studying last minute before exams. Stress would build up when I ‘forgot’ about a major project or if I didn’t feel organized or prepared.
What does this chain do to us? The act of procrastination weighs us down and limits us, making it much harder to be proud of ourselves and our accomplishments. We find it harder to balance our personal and professional lives, we find ourselves stressed or even worse, sick.
What hurts us the most is that we create excuses, adding more heavy links to the chain. You need to have a moment and tell yourself (if you haven’t yet): ‘I am in control of releasing the weight of procrastination and only I am responsible for the consequences of my choices.” After you have said that, accepted it and have made the decision to start your task, you are doing the hardest step.
Once you understand that you’re in control of breaking the chain of procrastination, you can start making choices to ensure that you don’t fall back into old habits. The way I do this is acknowledging when I am procrastinating, what I’m procrastinating from and why. Once I do that, I dig into why even more.
Sometimes we know what we are avoiding, but we don’t take enough time to figure out the driving factors of ‘why’. These factors can be a result of your childhood or past experiences, that when associated to a task can stir up feelings of doubt, insecurity or pain. It’s important to pick this apart, talk to someone.
Yes, this is uncomfortable, but the process is worth it.
Understanding why you avoid things is the key to breaking the chain of procrastination. You cannot afford to procrastinate on this or else you will never improve.
You can’t change yesterday, you can only improve for tomorrow, you can only change right now and you can’t fix something you don’t acknowledge. Don’t beat yourself up.
I know that when I’m cleaning the toilet, organizing the cupboards over again or distracting myself with ongoing text messages or social media outlets, I am avoiding something.
I have said yes to something of a lesser priority at the expense of not being proud of myself.
I want to challenge you today, if you have a thought “maybe I should ___ or I should start ___”, DO IT. After you’re done, take a moment to acknowledge the feeling. Embrace the success of doing something. This technique will allow you to have more confidence for the next task.
If you remember that project and the overwhelming ‘gasp’ happens, don’t allow it to discourage you, take that moment to say “OK, what do I need to do in order to break this into steps?” Or “Who can I call that I can talk to? Who can help me?”
Let go of your pride and break the chain of procrastination. We all deserve to put deposits in our integrity account.
Don’t just wait, get up and DO something!