Post by Spencer Willette, OMS-IV
It’s 11:00pm and you’re just now sitting down at your computer to start a 5 page paper that’s due tomorrow. You can’t help but acknowledge the fact that you wish you had started this project a long time ago. In this episode of EM OVER EASY, our hosts Andy, Drew, and John, talk about why so many of us procrastinate and how to lead others to overcome it.
Many of us battle procrastination at some point in our life. We often get caught up in the busyness of life or are overwhelmed by the task to even begin. Although, when others delay on a deadline we often label them a “procrastinator” but when we ourselves linger on a task the tendency is to make an excuse that we were really busy. Fundamental attribution error takes precedent in our perception in these situations. However, at the end of the day, we all have stretches of time where it’s difficult to focus and complete tasks. It’s not necessarily always a personality trait to procrastinate but it’s an aspect of life that we all can find ways to improve on.
Root causes of procrastination can be broken down into two major categories. Either we’re disinterested in the project or are intimidated by it. We find anything in the world to do rather than chip away at a project and clear it off our plate. Sometimes we delay so much that when we are pressed for time on the approaching deadline that the quality is not up to par or our full potential. Other times if we’ve delayed a “to-do item” so long, it’s almost embarrassing to even carry out the task. For example, having to respond to an individual through email after you’ve postponed your message for so long that it’s past the point of no return.
Some projects are so vast that it’s difficult to develop the inertia to even begin. As we’ve discussed in other episodes, setting smaller goals and deadlines of various tasks within a big project can help alleviate the initial overwhelming feeling of intimidation.
A practical way to address the issue of procrastination is to use a calendar, either mobile or on paper. Personally, I use a paper calendar but use what works for you! I enjoy highlighting and crossing items off my list. Also, there are so many apps for your phone that offer a concrete and sustainable way of tackling your projects and achieving your goals. One, in particular, is Todoist: To-Do List & Tasks.
- Recognize when you are doing more than energy modulation and actually avoiding the project.
- Understand the impact of procrastination. It is a choice to carry that item around longer than needed. Use that as motivation to clear it off your plate.
- Give people grace. Plan for it when developing project goals.
Listen in to hear their discussion.
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