Everybody thinks they know what procrastination is but there are several definitions in terms of how it affects people. The sad thing is that way too many people identify and associate themselves with this and as it is basically a form of avoiding situations or making decisions it is a very negative emotion. The big challenge is that once you have identified an emotion in yourself is stopping it filtering through into your personality and becoming as much a part of you as the colour of your eyes.
For the purpose of this article we are using ‘task aversion’ as our definition of procrastination, which translated from Latin means ‘ in favour of tomorrow’. It is the irrationality of the aversion that makes it a problem. One of the main traits of the human race is to pursue ways of bettering ourselves and becoming better off overall. This is positive intent and while the very essence of procrastination would seem to contradict this it actually goes to make a very important point.
Whatever we achieve, or fail to, isn’t purely down to our own conscious choices and is often the result of outside factors we aren’t even aware of. Whenever anyone procrastinates there is, at some level of their unconscious thinking, a belief that by taking the intended action you will end up worse off than if you do nothing. There are two ways you can do to turn this negativity into positivity.
The first is to discard the attachments and association that you have with procrastination and realise that you are not actually a procrastinator at all. In all honesty we all procrastinate at times but these times should be very much in the minority, and making the switch to this from it being in the majority is a huge step. The next step is to redefine procrastination in a way so it empowers and motivates you as opposed to limiting you.
The latter of the above steps is key as the way we define things in our own minds determines how we interact with them. If you are one of those who sees yourself as a chronic procrastinator who was born with this problem then the likelihood is that it is something you will struggle with all your life. If your definition of procrastination is that it’s a bad habit you will deal with at some point then it is controlling you and if you see your procrastination as something you can never overcome then you are probably right.
Procrastination should be defined as a negativity tendency and if you choose to put it to one side you will feel empowered to take action rather than avoiding it. Whether you actually can take this action instead of backing away as usual is very much up to you as an individual and how much you really want to change the way you react to having to make a decision. Motivation plays a key part here, both from yourself and others but all of the above depends very much on one thing; do you see your procrastination as a problem or not?