Welcome to Part 2 in Gaetano’s series on procrastination. Knowing where it starts seems to be a great place to dig in.
Procrastination Mini-Series â€“ Causes
by Gaetano Caruana
The first step to deal with your procrastination problem is to identify its causes, the reasons why you procrastinate. It is common that a lot of people procrastinate due to a subconscious reason; that is they donâ€™t know exactly why they procrastinate. Others think they know all causes for their procrastination problem. When I started researching procrastination I thought I formed part of the latter but to my surprise, I discovered that I knew only half the reasons why I used to procrastinate.
Fear: For some a particular task or duty seems to be bigger than them making them afraid to face it. In this case procrastination seems to be the easy way out, a form of escapism, from reality.
Escapism: Either because you are afraid to take responsibility of a challenging task or because you are lazy, you choose to escape from reality hence you procrastinate. Such people lie to themselves and come up with excuses such as: having other more important things to do or they need more time to handle that task in order to avoid the challenge posed by a particular duty.
It is very difficult to find out whether you procrastinate due to escapism or because you are afraid. This is because both fear and escapism is most of the time in our subconscious. You have to reflect and be honest to yourself in order to find out whether the above two reasons are in fact what causes you to procrastinate.
Perfectionist: Being aware of the quality of what you produce is an excellent attribute to have. But if you take it too far, perfectionism becomes a minus since it will slow you down. Ideally you only produce perfect stuff but in the real world, you have to learn how to strike a balance between the time it takes to produce something and its quality. Unfortunately perfectionists choose to invest a lot of time in one task from many tasks they need to get done.
Vicious Circle: The fact that in the past you had procrastinated has a direct influence on your future behaviour. People that procrastinated in the past are prone to keep procrastinating. It seems to be extremely difficult to break the chains that hold you back from becoming more productive. Like every other habit procrastination poses a challenge but by applying the right techniques, which will be described in the next article in this series, you can make it easier for yourself to smash your procrastination problem.
–ME “Liz” Strauss