Why Do  People Procrastinate?

By:  Michael Yazbeck

​Everyone has encountered at least one moment in their lives where they procrastinate on their work. This procrastination habit has been active during adulthood, which can affect peoples’ work performances and possibly lose their jobs because of it.
Nowadays, the COVID-19 pandemic has caused most people to lose their jobs, while some now operate by remote. Despite that, procrastination still finds a way to cause people to be neglectful. 

Procrastination is a bad habit that gets worse overtime, if people allow it to control them. There are many reasons as to why people procrastinate during their work, but regardless of what the reason is, there are ways to overcome it. How procrastination can be conquered depends on if the person is willing to change those habits for a stronger work environment. 

According to an article Why You Procrastinate (It Has Nothing to Do With Self-Control) by Charlotte Lieberman, one reason people procrastinate is bad mood. How people feel in a bad mood can vary from “boredom, anxiety, insecurity, frustration, resentment, self-doubt and beyond (Lieberman 2019).” Having a bad mood is understandable, there can be good days and bad days. However, having a bad mood gives people a reason to not want to focus on their work and instead of sealing away to deal with their anger. 

Boredom is a feeling that can cause people to not be in the mood. Work is often looked at as boring, which is fine, but work also helps people learn and grow. With that said, having too much work can be very stressful, which can cause boredom. 

Anxiety and insecurity can cause people to feel nervous, such as having a fear of not finishing a project before its deadline. These can cause procrastination because they can give people fear of not putting in the good work, and they would be wasting time feeling anxious and not confident enough.  

Ever had moments of frustration? Lots of people do, as being frustrated can cause people to neglect their work. Whatever the reason may be, whether it is fighting with a family member or feeling under pressure, it is normal to feel frustrated and let it out. 

To feel resentment towards someone is to think negatively about that person. When doing work, this can cause people to ignore what they are doing and think very dark thoughts about others. It could be their boss, their coworkers, or a family member. Emotions can be hard to control, which can lead to procrastination. 

Self-doubt can cause harm to people where they would question themselves. “Am I doing this right? What if I fail? What if my boss doesn't like me?” This can scare a person from not doing their work.

It is normal to feel all those things, but people have the will to overcome them and avoid procrastination. One possible way that people can fight procrastination is by creating a to-do list. Having a list helps keep people on track to meeting their goals and deadlines, by creating a sense of organization for them. Do not try to do things on a whim, keep tabs on every task using a to-do list. Simply having one would remind the person of what needs to be done and when.

Another way to avoid procrastination is by changing our daily habits. There are things that cause people to procrastinate, but what if they can change certain things to make them concentrate better? For example, changing sleeping habits can help energize the mind for people to get on to working diligently. Sleeping too little? Go to bed early. Sleeping too much? Set an alarm to wake up early. Setting up a good breakfast can also help give energy to do work on time, as energy is needed for the day. People procrastinate because they have low energy which prevents them from feeling motivated to work, but a good breakfast can fix that. 

Struggling with procrastination can be cumbersome. It is a terrible feeling to have to feel unmotivated to do anything, and as a result, progress gets halted. Yet, it does not always have to be this way, because sooner or later, people need to realize procrastination gets in the way of everything. It is ok to feel procrastinated, but it should not be a routine. Go out and get rid of those pesky procrastination habits!

Lieberman, Charlotte. “Why You Procrastinate (It Has Nothing to Do With Self-Control).” The New York Times, The New York Times, 25 Mar. 2019, www.nytimes.com/2019/03/25/smarter-living/why-you-procrastinate-it-has-nothing-to-do-with-self-control.html.

Schicker, Petr Ludwig & Adela. “What Is PROCRASTINATION and How Can You Overcome It?” Procrastination.com - Stop Procrastinating, Start Living, Procrastination.com, 12 July 2019, https://procrastination.com/what-is-procrastination

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