I don’t think there is a person alive that is not guilty of procrastination at some point in time and it rarely results in the production of our full potential. As a matter a fact, I put writing this post off until the last damn minute just to prove my point; so if you think this post falls short of my full writing potential, it will further support my thesis! Webster’s Dictionary defines Procrastination as “being slow or late about doing something that should be done: to delay doing something until a later time because you do not want to do it, because you are lazy, etc.”
We live in a busy world with tons of technology surrounding us. You can sit at your desk, type a report, talk on the phone and scan Facebook all at the same time. This is absolutely fantastic but it can be harmful just as much as it can be helpful. This constant information overload can be distracting as it causes us to lose track of our priorities as we deal with the multiplicity of options. Procrastination largely reflects our difficulty in regulating emotions and accurately predicting our true performance abilities.
But wait… I bet you think that you perform better under pressure! Well, the reality is that is just not true. When your stress level is increased your body releases chemicals called cortisol and epinephrine. Regular release of these chemicals will not only cause certain parts of your body to shut down for a short period of time but can also lead to a whole host of health problems. So, in essence, you actually get dumber!
The fact of the matter is, we all tend to procrastinate from time to time; however, studies show that we as human beings are quite resilient and have the mental capacity to overcome procrastination.
Here’s How to Get Started
- First, recognize self-defeating problems such as difficulty concentrating, poor time management, anxiety, and indecisiveness. You must find ways to control these monsters before moving forward with anything else (my opinion).
- Set realistic and obtainable goals. Setting goals that you know are unobtainable just sets you up for failure and back into a negative mindset.
- Discipline yourself to use time wisely and set priorities. Set reminders while working on projects. This lets you track your progress and reminds you to take breaks and refresh your mind.
- Be willing to change your environment. When we get into the routine of things we stop noticing the minor changes around us. Modify your environment, change things up, and eliminate or minimize distractions.
- Ensure you have created a functional work environment with adequate lighting, use a comfortable straight-backed chair, and keep your work area clean. This prevents distractions and day-dreaming, as well as fatigue and depression.
A life-long knowledge seeker!