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The Power of Procrastination; What can we do about them

Apr 08, 2019 By Kayode Oseh 2.1K

It’s typical to speak about procrastination as a habit. A psychologist once defined that procrastination is a graveyard where opportunities are buried. Most of the time, we find our self being reluctant in starting up something because we felt we have all the time in the world. The earlier we start up something, the better it is for us. One of the key strategy to beat procrastination is to “just get started.”

Breaking habits requires establishing a new behavioral pattern, a new prepotent response; a new habit. A predecision to “just get started” or “just say no” can be a very effective first step in this process of change. It is not the only step, but it is a key first one.

Once you know a habit exists, you have the responsibility to change it. Perhaps a sleep-walking murderer can plausibly argue that he wasn’t aware of his habit, and so he doesn’t bear responsibility for his crime, but almost all of the other patterns that exist in most people’s lives — how we eat and sleep and talk to our kids, how we unthinkingly spend our time, attention and money — those are habits that we know exist. And once you understand that habits can change, you have the freedom and the responsibility to remake them. Once you understand that habits can be rebuilt, the power of habit becomes easier to grasp and the only option left is to get to work.

The procrastination habit can change, and it is through learning about why we procrastinate and how that relates to your particular habit that you can find that keystone habit that will be central to change. Perhaps your procrastination hinges on internalized unrealistic expectations of others and an irrational dialogue that this has set up in your own mind. Perhaps it’s your unwillingness to tolerate frustration or delay of gratification, you always want to feel good now. Perhaps it’s chronic disorganization. Whatever it is, it is something, and it can change. Find that keystone habit, and you will leverage change to more life-giving as opposed to self-defeating habits like procrastination.


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