The Truth About Trying to Beat Procrastination
The battle of a motivated mind and a sluggish spirit.
I remember what it felt like to be lazy as a kid. To go to bed late on a Friday night, eager to sleep in as long as I want the following Saturday morning. It was glorious. For some reason, I never had any issues completing my homework, finishing my chores promptly so that I could make room to play computer games or watch cartoons for the rest of the day. What happened to that attitude? Where did that structure go when I finally entered adulthood?
Those are questions I still ask myself to this day because I’m still trying to figure out why procrastination has been such a big problem for me. I’m still managing to meet deadlines, get the work in, and continue to progress, but it takes too much effort to get me there. I knew that something was off when it became too easy to put things off, no matter how much I had to get done that day. I knew then that I was in trouble.
I Like Working, So Why is Starting So Difficult?
I’ve always been the kind of person that would fall into extremes when it came to my work ethic. Either I was overworking or underworking myself, and I couldn’t find an in-between. I would fall into these unproductive ruts where I couldn’t claw my way out of, and the question remained: why?
I would wake up on some mornings so frustrated by the number of things I hadn’t gotten done, and it would just discourage me further. If I found a method that inspired change, it never did last for long. I knew that getting rid of procrastination in my life would become a daily battle, but if I wanted to continue to grow as a writer, it was something that had to be done.
Beating Procrastination Became a Habit to Build
That means that I would have to buck up and do the work regardless of how much I want to put it off. It wasn’t easy in the beginning, and it certainly isn’t easy now. Like many other habits, trying to stay focused and productive throughout the day may seem effortless if you’re in a good mood, having a good day, and are generally inspired. Though, what about the other days? The days you need to be productive? These are the days you have to stop convincing yourself you have all the time in the world to get back to work.
My First Step: There is No Later
If you have the time to do it now, don’t talk yourself out of it. All of that time deducing whether you could get it done later could be spent finishing it so that you could free up the rest of your day. Just like you did when you were a kid finishing your homework.
Don’t allow yourself to fall down the rabbit hole of getting distracted, putting the work off, and generally not doing anything at all because you believe that you can somehow do it all later. Chances are, you may be downplaying the workload, and it may be accumulating faster than you may realize.
It’s Easy to Get Overwhelmed When There’s Too Much to Do
And you’re probably overwhelmed because you’ve been putting off too much too frequently. I dealt with this quite recently as I started to deal with the mountain of work that had piled up before me, feeling somewhat overwhelmed every step of the way. Even though I could acknowledge that feeling to be a terrible one, I knew it could very well happen again if I weren’t careful. I had to start putting weight to my tasks, my priorities, and what had to be done to beat the procrastination before it took over my life.
The Battle Never Ends
It has now become more comfortable, and that has been incredibly beneficial to both my overall mood as well as my work ethic. Though it is something that I will be working on for a while. A lot of where it began stemmed from fear, anxiety, and general circumstances that I couldn’t avoid — but those are all factors of life that I have to deal with.
I can’t sit back and let everything I’ve worked so hard for slip through my fingers, and I know that while it will be challenging to get to a place where procrastination no longer affects me, it is undoubtedly possible. It starts with a change in perspective, followed by a change in action.
I had no idea how much I was holding myself back until I learned to let go and began to focus on what matters the most to me. I learned then that I was making it harder than it had to be, and I had to start convincing myself that procrastination was no longer the answer.
Effort is the answer.
Drive is the answer.
Action is the answer.
I will start every day taking action, and I won’t let procrastination stand in my way.
Neither should you.
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