Did you know?
Approximately 88% of the workforce admits to procrastinating at least one hour daily, according to Dariousforoux. A similar study by a research firm, Basex, discovered that unnecessary distractions like lost productivity and diminished innovation cost around $650 billion loss for businesses.
Procrastination is normal and evident to some extent in all population segments—from students to employees—but overcoming it is another skill that comes to fewer only. It brings us back to the topic of figuring out what is procrastination and how to put it back in place.
This blog will elaborate on everything you need to know about it and implement preventive measures to disarm procrastination before it disarms you!
What Is Procrastination and Causes Behind It?
Procrastinating is an act of voluntarily delaying a task until a later time. It is about missing a deadline, submitting a task on the last day, or asking for more time for a project that other productive individuals can finish before the deadline.
Procrastinating occasionally is understandable, but it is hard to estimate when it turns insidiously into a habit. Experts believe there could be many reasons behind procrastination, ranging from learned to psychological ones. An irregular sleeping schedule, improper diet, low emotional intelligence, lack of goals and plans, indiscipline, improper time management, and spending time on tasks that add less value to life are some commonly known factors behind procrastination.
However, whatever the reason, displaying a tendency to procrastinate can be a major red flag. it could snowball into an exponential decrease in work performance and reduced productivity with prolonged negligence, impacting anxiety levels, developing poor impulse control, or hampering overall performance.
Therefore, monitoring work patterns to gain self-insight at regular intervals is important. Some effective strategies are journaling, introspection, measuring productivity, learning time management methods, self-help books, meditation, and self-discipline.
What is more important than implementing efficiency-improving methods is to stay stringent and stick with the determined routine.
What Are Some Tell-Tale Signs of Procrastination?
Despite being easy to detect, procrastination can be extremely challenging to overcome, entrapping people’s psyche. Failing to put in effort makes it even more arduous to overcome.
Several commonly displayed signs of procrastination are elaborated below.
Missing deadlines, a hallmark sign of procrastination makes it easily identifiable in the early stages. Perpetually missing daily or monthly tasks or extending timelines is a serious indicator of procrastination.
Chronic procrastinators fumble while managing situations and work pressure, eventually getting overwhelmed with workload. Managing stress, meeting deadlines, and controlling emotions are imperative to not get mentally sunken and achieve goals before quitting.
Distraction is the chief reason behind lesser productivity. However, getting distracted easily signals a lack of concentration and an absence of intrinsic will to complete a task. Procrastinators develop an ability to let their surroundings influence their focus and affect their performance.
Using Cell Phones Excessively
Procrastinators subconsciously long for a reason to overlook an important task, finding a perfect refuge inside their smartphones. A 2001 study revealed that 50.7% of respondents used the internet as a procrastination tool to escape from responsibilities and hold tasks for later times.
Doing Non-Urgent Tasks
Spending excessive time on small tasks and vice versa is a poor time management strategy. Doing tasks that do not add value absorbs the available time without productive results, leaving critical ones pending, indirectly counting as procrastination.
Habits That Encourage Procrastination
Habits affect productivity!
Similar to productive habits giving rise to productive results, unproductive habits lead to procrastination and staggered performance. Therefore, the key to conquering procrastination lies in the habits an individual often practices.
But what are those daily practices and habits that promote procrastination and negatively impact a worker’s performance?
Keep reading to know some of the most common reasons that lead to procrastination and delayed work projects.
Many don’t realize that daydreaming is similar to draining your energy into hypothetical and unrealistic situations. This gives rise to workers daydreaming for hours, leaving a trail of pendency before them.
Developing Internet Addiction
Using the internet wisely is a productive habit. Contrarily, using it to click reckless selfies, scroll social media feeds, play games, or chat irrelevantly without keeping a count of time may create an addiction encouraging more procrastination.
Waking Up Late
Waking up late is a major reason why many fail to schedule their work at the most productive time of the day. Also, not being an early bird in the morning can make workers lose many growth opportunities.
Generally Sleeping More
Sleeping more can be a gratifying activity but not when you aim to be a productive worker. Experts believe sleeping excessively leads to a disturbed circadian rhythm and lethargy, giving rise to a will to procrastinate.
Becoming a Part of Irrelevant Conversations
Starting a random conversation or getting involved in a small chit-chat with coworkers can be enticing and important for establishing social connections at the workplace. However, long and irrelevant conversations are major productivity killers at the workplace and encourage procrastination.
Overthinking is very similar to writing on paper with an inkless pen. Irrespective of a lot of mental work and churning, overthinking doesn’t produce results. Additionally, the mental energy wasted on it can turn ideas into magic, if put at the right place.
Planning excessively could lead to overindulgence in what could go wrong. This fear of potential conflicts and bottlenecks leads to stagnancy and leads to not starting the task in the first place. Also, it causes missed deadlines and time drainage without productive results.
Perfectionism is a fool’s strategy to be imperfect. This may sound counterintuitive but it is ultimately true. A sense of perfectionism will force a person to repeat a task to complete it with more perfection, fueling procrastination.
Countering Procrastination with Strategies
Getting rid of procrastination is possible and achievable. With in-depth monitoring and introspection, countering measures can bring mismanaged tasks in order and enhance seamless productivity.
Mindfulness reminds an individual to stay in the present and not astray from the current task through overthinking or daydreaming.
Plan Your Day
Task management is instrumental in overcoming procrastination. Also, it ensures, high-priority tasks are accomplished first and not-so-urgent tasks are left for later times.
Time management is a powerful strategy to be productive and keep procrastination at a one-arm distance. Also, it generates sufficient time for breaks and supports a healthy work-life balance.
Diet plays an important role in improving mental and cognitive function. Supplying the body with adequate amounts of nutrition helps generate boundless energy to complete tasks on time.
Do Physical Exercise
Daily workout sessions regularize the circadian rhythm, increase blood supply, and facilitate sleep, leading to razor-sharp focus, enthusiasm, and high productivity.
Let’s Wrap it Up!
Procrastination is a natural human tendency but can significantly impede workers from attaining peak performance if not countered on time. A mindful and productive lifestyle is highly effective in keeping procrastination at bay and saving time to achieve goals before deadlines.
Using time-tracking tools like KonarkPro is a great strategy for monitoring work performance and controlling project delays. Also, one can modulate their work behavior with various features offered by time management tools.
What are the consequences of procrastination for prolonged periods?
Procrastination can lead to subdued productivity and excessive work stress. Incomplete tasks and project delays can affect professional relationships and future growth prospects. Prolonged procrastination leads to behavioral problems such as unduly justifying sub-par performance, high impulsivity, anger issues, and dissatisfaction with work life.
How can I improve the tendency to procrastinate?
Monitoring performance and continuous improvement is a straightforward approach to fighting procrastination. Here are some quick tips.
- Manage time
- Exercise daily
- Remove emotional stressors
- Follow a sleep schedule
- Eat healthily
- Take reasonable breaks