Me-Myself & I.

Let's talk about procrastination

Has it ever happened to you that you put off the same task over and over again until there is no way out, and you have to get down to it?

Well, that's what procrastinating is all about, postponing our obligations till there’s no way out. Procrastination is definitely nothing new. But, why do we procrastinate? Are there different reasons or types of procrastinators?

If we have a look at the psychology behind procrastination, there are several theories or reasons why we might do it. One reason might be lack of motivation, in other words, a lack of desire to do a task that does not inspire, excites or simply bores us. Another reason might be anxiety or fear. When we are faced with a task that is new or too demanding, we might be scared of not performing at our best, and we might simply avoid such task until we have no other choice.

The outcome of procrastination is that it can leave us with a sense of guilt, a feeling of not being good enough. But our friend psychology is there to help. First, psychologists claim you should identify the reasons why you procrastinate and what are your procrastination patterns, and then find ways to deal with them.

To help you, here are some tips to hopefully put an end to (or at least deal with) procrastination:

Organize your day, every day
Organize the tasks you have planned for the day. And do this every day. Spend about 15 minutes every morning making a list of all the pending activities for the day (both for work and life). By doing this, you will have a very well-structured overview of everything that the day has in store for you.

Divide your work into parts
Once you have planned your day, you will be able to identify 3 tasks that might motivate you less than the rest. These are the tasks that will probably make you procrastinate, so be aware!

Here is a tip to deal with them: Divide those tasks into parts. Let’s say you have to answer 30 work emails. What you should do is, divide the tasks into two parts of around 20 minutes each. What this does, is set a time frame for your mind so the activity no longer seems endless or overwhelming, and will help you accomplish the task in a more efficient way.

Alternate with other activities
Have you heard of “task interleaving”? It is a productivity technique (used in workplaces such as warehouses) which consists of combining different tasks (interleaving them) while performing one task. Short activities between big tasks trick our brains so that it does not perceive a constant monotony and gets bored.

Give yourself rewards
Every effort deserves its reward. You may have heard this a thousand times, but it is actually true. When we have invested time and effort in something, it is good to reward ourselves. It's a way to keep ourselves motivated.

We hope that by following these tips, you will start to push those procrastinating tendencies away and might even feel a bit more hyped about your daily tasks.
But also remember, procrastinating is something we all do, and that’s cool. And as the number one procrastinator, let me tell you this: you’ll do better next time.
Conversation avec Steinunn Bjarnadóttir: la gagnante de la bourse PDPAOLA x Central Saint Martins
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