After dilly-dallying my way through, I finally started reading this blog on procrastination. What is procrastination, you ask? It’s the act of delaying or postponing tasks, often leading to stress and a sense of guilt. Despite being well aware of the repercussions, there’s still something that keeps you from starting your tasks on time. So, let’s dive in and try to find out why.

As it turns out, at its core, procrastination is often linked to deeper psychological factors such as fear of failure, perfectionism, and low self-esteem. When faced with a daunting task, the fear of not meeting expectations can be paralysing, leading you to avoid starting the task altogether. Similarly, as a perfectionist, you might delay tasks because you fear you won’t be able to complete them to an impossibly high standard.

Now that makes sense. It’s not that you don’t do anything on time. Come on, you’re not that bad after all, right? It’s the tasks that are more overwhelming and time-consuming (at least in your head) that take time. So, here are a few ways to manage procrastination:

  1. Breaking tasks into smaller, more manageable steps: This can reduce the feeling of being overwhelmed and make it easier for you to start working. Setting specific, achievable goals and deadlines can also create a sense of accountability and urgency.
  2. Using the Pomodoro Technique: Working in focused intervals with short breaks can improve your productivity and reduce the temptation to procrastinate.
  3. Creating a conducive work environment: Minimizing distractions, whether they’re digital or physical, can help you maintain focus.
  4. Developing a routine and sticking to it: This can also reinforce productive habits.

Ultimately, overcoming procrastination requires a combination of self-awareness and practical strategies. By understanding the underlying causes and implementing small, consistent changes in how you approach tasks, you can gradually reduce procrastination and enhance your productivity and well-being.

Written by Drishti Jalan, psychologist at I’m Powered – Center for counselling and Well-being.