Is the Procrastination the plague of the 21st century?

How often do you before the pass of an important project, exam, conversation with your parents or visit to the dentist (when the tooth is aching) find a host of other, more ordinary occupations, that are absolutely not related to the main case? And each list of such cases and the situation are quite different and may contain quite a lot of points. And even if you have this list with just one item, it still interferes with normal life. What should you do? To deal with this unpleasant phenomenon.


Let’s start with the definition of the term “procrastination”. It is a concept in psychology, indicating a constant delay for later of unpleasant thoughts and deeds. Procrastination is the result of impulsivity. Self-control and satisfaction delay are the key to procrastination control. There is no vaccine against it, but there are people who have immunity to a completely harmless virus at first sight.

In scientific use, the term “procrastination” was introduced in 1971 by P. Ringenbah in the book “Procrastination through the ages: A definitive history.” A book by A. Ellis and W. Knaus “Overcoming procrastination” was published in 1977, which formed the basis of clinical observation.

Prokrastinating people suffer from:

–  Poor control over impulsivity;

–  Lack of consistency;

–  Lack of labor discipline;

–  Lack of management skills;

–  Inability to work methodically.

Motivation can be modeled using the following equation:

(expectations * value) / (impulsivity * delay)

Temptation is a victory of impulse control. Modern society has more sources of temptation. Hope is an optimistic expectation of success:

1.       Too much pessimism causes procrastination (too low expectations of success keeps us from the beginning of the case);

2.       Too much optimism also is the reason of the procrastination (unrealistic sense of easy reach of all forces to delay the beginning of the case until the last second).

Methods for enhancing optimism:

–  The success spirals are a series of achievements, which will add the confidence;

–  Someone else win – the reading of other people’s successful stories, the find of inspirational books, movies, people, join a community, where there are such people;

–  Fulfillment of desires – visualization of success and subsequent analysis of your current condition;

–  Prepare for the worst, hope for the best – develop recovery strategy in the case of a return to old habits. Anticipate the emergence of temptations and find ways to the fight against them beforehand.

The subjective value of the task performance:

•          Create a chain of objectives that will connect the unpleasant tasks with pleasant ones.

•          Articulate goals positively, avoid negatives

•          Turn all the tasks performance in the game – off boredom

•          Bring meaning to the tasks performance, tying them for the purposes

•          Examine the schedule of your effectiveness spikes and plan to reflect this

•          Clearly define in your schedule the time for physical education and sleep

•          Do not forget to eat, – the hungry has yet helped no one.

•          Make sure that you sleep in the predicted time, get ready for bed.

•          Do not ignore the existence of the limits of your capabilities.

•          Realize in time that the problem scares you and split it into smaller tasks so long as each of the subtasks will not look harmless.

•          Reward yourself for completing tasks.


–  Recognize and eliminate the temptation to a safe distance.

–  Meet your needs before they will distract you from work.

–  Plan how you will have fun – work better, knowing what rest you will have.

–  Create a system of penalties for distraction.

–  Mentally handle the temptation, so that they seemed to be something dirty, unattractive.

–  Get rid of the points at which it is tempting.

There are a few tips that help to deal with procrastination and do not require any complicated operations. The main thing is do not delay the work on a “for later”.

A.      Make a nasty business in the morning. Of course, not immediately after awakening. And when the time comes to do business, let the first item in your «ToDoList» will be at least one minor unpleasant business. For example, call a plumber or a not very pleasant client. It’s like jumping from the tower immediately without thinking. A good rule – first of all to do at least a little unpleasant thing, and your list is one item shorter.

B.      If you find it hard to do any work several times a week, do it every day. Even if it may sound strange, it usually works. For example, you need to write a blog of article or to fill the card for the program. Of course, you can sit for a few days to write the necessary amount. But first, you do not always have the right material at hand, and second, to sit down for the second time and force yourself to write it in a few days will be very difficult (given the fact that you do not like it, but you still need to do it). If you start working on it little by little each day, then you gradually involve in. And to sit down for this work will not be that difficult. Gradually this will come at you in the habit, and later you may even like it.

C.      Find a company for your “unpleasant business.” Studies show that many things we are doing much more likely for a team with someone than alone.

D.      Make preparations for your work an indispensable tool. That is, collection of the necessary tools allows you to prepare for the unpleasant task performance mentally.

E.       Keep a list. This advice can be found quite often in the fight against non-compliance cases (simply put, pervasive laziness). And it works. Usually, the lists up to do something long term, but it works also with one-day tasks. Just write on paper, that by the end of today I have to do this and that.

F.       At first is the most unpleasant (ladies and children – in advance). Make sure that at first you perform one of the major unpleasant affairs, and not following the “little trouble” you are trying to delay the performance of the nasty (it happens).

G.      Learn to enjoy the performance of your nasty deeds. Forced yourself to do what has already been delayed a month – Rejoice! At least for what you have done and finally found the strength to complete a very unpleasant thing. Even if you were a little sick in the performance process and in the end an unpleasant aftertaste left. You did it. Well done!

And now I would like to ask what you begin to do to avoid doing unpleasant things? Personally, I start going through things and find that I still have to do this, “it seems to be necessary,” often not associated with “my dragon.”

Filed under Homework Help.
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