Why Do I Procrastinate?
Does procrastination have anything to do with being lazy? Research suggests no. Yet so many people still think that they, or others, are being lazy when they find themselves procrastinating.
“I am so lazy! I can’t understand why I am lazy. I don’t want to be lazy. It really distresses me! I’ve tried to do something about it but I just keep procrastinating!”
This client, who has raised a family of children on her own, who has meticulously cared for her home and garden, who worked a number of jobs to make ends meet, who was constantly working to improve herself and her situation, was referring to herself as lazy!
Labels like “lazy” do nothing for building confidence and self-esteem, and provide little incentive to stop the problem of procrastinating!
4 Types of Procrastinators
Let's explore 4 types of procrastinators: AVOIDERS, THRILL-SEEKERS, INDECISIVES, and IMPULSIVES
1. AVOIDERS: they avoid doing something that they know has to be done, but just can’t bring themselves to attend to it.
Maybe that task is mundane and boring, like housework and preparing meals and scheduling social media posts every.single.day. It doesn’t inspire you. It’s not expansive and alive for you. It’s nothing short of energy sapping, life-draining tedium. If this is you then be grateful for procrastination. It’s a life-saver. On the other hand, if that task IS life-giving, supports your progress, expands your reach, provides you with visibility, enhances your offerings in your business, and your future self depends on it, then that’s another story. In this case, there can be only 2 reasons that you are procrastinating. You either don’t have the skills to do the task OR your inner dialogue is running the show, and may have disrupted the communication between your Spleen and Liver network. An inner dialogue of not being good enough, fear of failure, lack of confidence, self-doubt, lack of a clear direction or something similar may be triggering your procrastination.
2. THRILL-SEEKERS: they leave things to the last minute to enjoy the rush of adrenaline as they work furiously against time to get the job completed by the deadline.
As a definition goes, I’m questioning this one. You might work really well under pressure, however could the reason you put yourself under pressure in the first place be because you are reaching for perfectionism? Are you trying to get all the other jobs out of the way before you start on this one, big, important task? The only problem is that those other jobs take up all the time.
3. INDECISIVES: they delay making a decision or simply don’t make the decision. The motivation for not making a decision is to absolves the procrastinator of responsibility for any outcomes. I’m challenging this definition as well. Do you consider that if you don’t make that decision, you won’t have to worry about the consequences? Hmmm…. By my reckoning, you’re not making that decision because you’re not clear about your needs. You can’t see how a decision will support you because you’re not clear about your direction. You’re worried about what others might think of you if you make a decision that they don’t like. The decision seems too difficult for you. You don’t feel as though you have enough information to make a decision. You’ve become a people pleaser and making some decisions might mean that you can’t please everyone.
Typically indecisiveness is reflected in your body as an interference with the communication between your Lung, Liver and Heart networks.
4. IMPULSIVES: they are very easily distracted from the task at hand, unable to stay on track with goal-oriented behaviours. So my question is, “If you struggle with maintaining goal-directed behaviour, what’s wrong with your goal?” Social media offers one of the most readily available forms of distraction. When you cannot resist, its time to start looking at your goals? “What’s wrong with my goal?” Does it inspire me? Does it expand and come alive for me? If your answer is no, then maybe it’s time to revise your goal. If your goal DOES inspire you, and you find your inner dialogue telling you it can’t be done, you’ll never succeed, it’s not meant for you, you’re not worthy enough, then those stories need some revision.
The inability to focus may also reflect a disruption in the communication between your Heart, Spleen and Liver networks.
Procrastinators generally, eventually get the job done, however not before it has cost them significantly.
It costs you money…as you miss deadlines for taxes, bill payments, and price increases.
It costs your health…as you create long-term stress for short term gains, or perhaps fail to seek medical assistance earlier enough.
It costs you emotionally… as you try to cope with the feelings of guilt, shame and anxiety.
It costs your relationships…as you continually let down your family, your partner, your boss, your landlord, your creditors, your customers.
It costs your business… as you lose credibility, lose valuable time, frustrate your co-workers, fail to make progress and damage your reputation.
Procrastination is Not Laziness!
Whatever procrastination is, laziness it is not.
Procrastination has something to do with fear, or with how you feel about yourself, or about failing at things that you put your energy into.
You might perceive that the task is too difficult for you, or have a memory at failing at a similar task in the past.
It may have to do with your confidence, your motivation to succeed, or with your clarity and focus.
You might not know where to start. It might be a complex task that seems overwhelming when you look at it in its entirety.
Your procrastination is a response to a feeling that is generated when your task connects with an old story - a feeling that depletes your motivation, drains your enthusiasm, and shuts down your ability to take useful action.
You are out of alignment with your natural “drive to thrive”!
Procrastination is a coping strategy to cope with a situation that is uncomfortable for you. It’s your form of resistance. It’s an obstacle to your success.
You are out of alignment with your natural “drive to thrive”!
Read more… HOW DO I STOP PROCRASTINATING?
SOLUTIONS BEYOND STRATEGIES is my Facebook community where you can explore where you are stuck, procrastinating, self-sabotaging and other key barriers to success. Join us!
About me: Josie Coco
My work reveals how procrastination, self-sabotage, self-doubt, indecision, and lack of clarity show up, and keep you stuck. It enables you to readily release them so that you can show up for your business no matter what. I’m a Certified BodyTalk Practitioner of BodyTalk Consciousness-Based Energy Psychology and Health and Well-being Mentor. You are welcome to seek more information and work with me here.