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Procrastination Can Be Decreased by Doing What You Should

August 5, 2010

Today as I scrubbed my bathrooms, which is something that I am not very fond of doing, I meditated. I began asking myself why I had postponed doing it for such an extended period. As I accomplished the task, my mind freewheeled into all the incentives that cause us to procrastinate, and I came up with several that apply to me. I had to ask myself though how I allowed my bathrooms to get so dirty. I am an ambition person, and I know what I want and what I like when it comes to my home. I thought that, I should clean the bathrooms; then I looked to find another task, which seemed more important. This is one way that I unconsciously justified my procrastination in the past weeks.

Sometimes when we procrastinate, it is because we dislike doing something, and we make excuses. It was not so much that I was making excuses for myself. I was completely overlooking what I wanted and needed; clean bathrooms. I finally followed through with what I had been thinking I should do and began experiencing the thrill of success! I thought as I worked that I should have done it earlier, and it would have taken less energy and time. Then I asked myself if I would have felt as good about doing it if it had taken less effort. It is ironic how procrastination can leave us feeling a sense of reward. Maybe this is one reason we do delay taking action.

I wondered if it was because the things I do generally go unnoticed, but things I leave undone have a way of standing out. Think about this a moment. Obviously, if you clean your bathroom every day, it remains clean. Your work may go unnoticed because it is consistently clean. However, if you allow it to get messy, someone may notice what you are not doing (cleaning it). As ridiculous at that sounded after I wrote it, I am leaving it in this post anyway. Of course, when we procrastinate it is for various unconscious reasons, for the most part, so this one seems relevant. As I drew closer to my goal, I asked myself if I had been waiting until I felt guilt, pressured (by me), or if I had to force myself to go after what I wanted.

I came up with several reasons I procrastinate, and it seems that sometimes it is a combination of things. How did I allow my bathrooms to get dirtier than I would have liked? I ignored myself every time that I heard myself think that I should clean them. Even without making excuses for myself, I simply dismissed the idea. I know that if I do what I hear myself think I should do, I take action sooner rather than later. In addition, I am less likely to think I should have done something sooner while I am doing it. There are tasks that we put off for various reasons. However, most of the issues we procrastinate about are simple tasks, which take little time to accomplish.

Sandra Hendricks, EzineArticles.com Expert AuthorPeople say that we postpone primarily because we are afraid to move forward. This may be true on some level because we have insecurities, anxieties, negative outlooks, fear of rejection, lack confidence, and have unclear goals. I believe that indecision plays a major role in stopping us from getting what we want. We must know what we want and need and clearly set forth a plan and execute it to succeed. However, when it comes to the small details in our lives, we can decrease stalling by promptly doing what we think we should. This is also a part of time management as I found today while I cleaned my bathrooms. It took me twice as long as it would have taken. In addition, it was definitely not a good example of working smarter.


2 Comments to “Procrastination Can Be Decreased by Doing What You Should”

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  2. Dia says:

    Hi Sandra,

    Many times people procrastinate for many reasons such as lack of motivation, fear of the result among other reasons. One of the best tools to overcome procrastination is by concentrating on end result. This tool works very well with me. Thanks for sharing

    .-= Dia´s last blog ..How to be happy =-.

    • Sandra says:

      Hi Dia,

      Concentrating on the outcome is a notably effective tool. I have learned that when I am frightened of doing something that I think I should do, I often change my mind because of my own reluctance. By taking action toward what I visualize, I should do, even if it is difficult for me, I face my concern. Facing and owning up to our fears and following through is an effective method of working through them.