One thing that I’ve always struggled with is procrastination. This paper is an example of that struggle. It has been put off for as long as possible, and then it interferes with Easter celebrations with the family. It did, however, give me a topic to write about. I’m thankful that procrastination sparked the procrastination paper. Until then, I didn’t know what to research. The problem with procrastination affects most aspects of my life, including homework, routine daily tasks, appointments, studying for tests, and even waking up each day. Snooze alarms were created for procrastinators. They put off the inevitable for as long as possible, which starts each day off on the wrong foot. It goes downhill from there.
Procrastination is a complex psychological behavior that affects everyone to some degree or another. With some it can be a minor problem; with others it is a source of considerable stress and anxiety. Procrastination is only remotely related to time management, because procrastinators usually know exactly what they should be doing, even if they cannot do it. Therefore detailed schedules usually are no help.
A procrastinator is usually overly optimistic about his ability to complete a task on a tight deadline. He/she may feel that they have everything under control, so there’s no rush to get started. Estimates of how much time the task will take to complete is made. If far more time is lodged between now and then, it is put off. Lulled by a false sense of security, time passes. At some point, he crosses over an imaginary starting time and suddenly realizes that he is no longer in control and discovers there isn’t adequate time to complete the task. This adds more stress and anxiety.
At this point, considerable effort is directed towards completing the task, and work progresses. This sudden spurt of energy is followed by the usual statement, “I work better under pressure.” Actually, at this point you are making progress only because you have no other choice. Your back is against the wall and there are no alternatives. Progress is being made, but you have lost your freedom. If the assignment garners a decent grade, the procrastinator is positively rewarded. As a result, the counterproductive behavior is repeated over and over again.
Some characteristics of procrastination and those that partake are low self-confidence, feelings that “I’m too busy,” stubbornness, manipulation, and coping with pressure. If the task seems difficult, we tend to put it off. We sometimes feel it is overly time-consuming, and there won’t be enough time until the weekend. The procrastinator may feel they lack knowledge as to what to do, and fear that others will discover the mistakes made. It’s easier to not start than to mess it all up.
Some procrastinators are perfectionists. They have unrealistic expectations and think it will take too much time to do it right. Others are angry they have to do it and think they are getting even by not doing it until later. Some are self-doubters and feel they can’t do it well enough. Others have low frustration tolerance.
The ABC’s of procrastination are: A- = Activating Event. The activating event is whatever you are