Procrastination is a human condition that Life Coaches, and even more shockingly, Productivity Coaches, suffer from.
The reason we do so is because we are hard wired to choose pleasure over pain whenever possible. One BIG reason is that people tend to avoid doing things that make them feel anxious, frustrated or just plain bad.
Therefore, getting your brain to do something it associates with pain (and by that I mean anything you don’t enjoy) whilst turning its back on something more enjoyable takes a lot of emotional energy.
That emotional energy is finite and as such there will be times when you are running low and procrastination is the easiest option.
Most of us jump at the chance to do things we enjoy and bring us pleasure.
I often procrastinate over grocery shopping or anything involving shops until the last grain of food is used or last toilet paper roll but so what? It’s not a big deal as long as I get the job done, and I always do.
I often procrastinate about unloading the dishwasher, but so what? I don’t enjoy emptying dishwashers, but the dishwasher always gets unloaded before the end of the day.
Recently I procrastinated opening an email I knew would heighten my blood pressure and send me spiralling with all sorts of emotion causing me to feel anxious and upset. To give you insight, my previous landlord was accusing me of ruining the home I had rented, which was blatant lies and false accusations. If anything it was left in pristine condition taking note it is a very old place. I felt sick to my core. One of my core values being “honesty” was being defiled. Problem comes here that I knew the pain the email was going to inflict so I procrastinated way too long in facing the pain.
I got a nudge eventually to read it.
The deal is not that you procrastinate, but that you stress about procrastinating and all sorts of emotion follows.
To top it all you then feel like there’s something wrong with you or made to feel you are wrong because you do it.
There really isn’t!
If you suffer from genuinely crippling procrastination, which I can win the Emmy Award for, when facing even on important tasks, like I did, then the method I found from a mentor coach of mine explaining useful techniques can work. However, it’s not meant to be used multiple times per day. I have shortened it to a 3 minute video.
For the trivial stuff you procrastinate over I recommend a daily dose of chilling, deep breathing and a general acceptance that you’re not a weirdo who can’t get their shit together, but a perfectly normal Human Being.