Procrastination is definitely a universal problem. But, I think one of the ways to solve a problem is to identify the cause of the problem itself. This, we mostly run from because it’s easier to assume that the real reason why we procrastinate is something very serious and worthwhile, when in actual sense, it may just be a choice to procrastinate.
Procrastination could either be habitual or a one-off thing.
It could also be on a serious and important task or on something as minute as clearing the dishes in the kitchen. Because I do not want this post to be all over the place, I restrict the implication of procrastination to goal implementation and purpose journey.
At different periods in life, we have specific goals that we would want to be pursue and execute within a time frame. But it takes more the wanting to do something and achieve results for execution to take place. I’m not going to pretend like I do not procrastinate, but I am more intentional about not doing it. and I am able to do this because I have been able to identify two major reasons why I procrastinate. These reasons that I share with today were realised in my recent bout with procrastination and you would see that you can relate with these.
Fear of failure
It is often said that fear is an acronym for False Evidence Appearing Real. We know this, but in the moment of actually realising this, we do not do a very good job. Fear of failure is a real thing and probably one of the most underrated types of fear. Nobody likes to fail. And that is a good thing. It shows that we are human, and we have emotions. As a coping mechanism, we make all calculations to ensure that all checks out, we verify all options to be sure of 100% success. If we keep doing that, we will never do anything. It is important to know that being 100% ready is an impossible feat, but you can be ready enough to take the first step.
Fear of failure comes with new terrain, assignment and goals. This definitely encourages us to procrastinate on what we need to do. You would rather procrastinate a task than carry out the task and fail at it. And this is understandable.
However, to actually overcome this phase and stop procrastination, you need to acknowledge that you have this fear, acknowledge that you will never feel super ready for this growth you are about to enter, but you have to do it now and get it over with. If you are going to fail at something, fail fast and try again. Don’t let your assumption that you will fail stop you from pursue your goal and purpose.
The goal seems to big
This is somewhat related to the first reason. Our goals and dreams are usually bigger than us because we are to grow into it. looking at that dream in its fullness and comparing it to who we are in the moment could be overwhelming. If you keep seeing that dream as a big dream, it will remain just a dream.
One way to go about this challenge is to break down the goal into small achievable bits. The way I see it, within a dream are several bits that could achieved in time frames. Don’t overwhelm yourself with the big picture. It takes steps (several) to get to the end goal. So, break that goal into those steps and start with one step at a time.
Procrastination does limit our growth and progress because it leaves us in a state of “I will do”. Execution is where the work is. It is also where the growth is. Take a few minutes to ask yourself why you procrastinate on your important task. If you find out why, you will be able to put the right measures in place to fix it, starting from the ones I’ve stated above.