The 3 types of procrastination and tips for stopping tasks

Many people leave for tomorrow what they could do today, or leave it for next week or even later.

Procrastination is the habit of delaying our commitments irrational and unproductive. It generates a lot of stress and not a few frustrations.

You may have tried unsuccessfully to be true to your goals, but you always end up procrastinating, if this happens to you, keep reading because this article can help. Specifically, we will see what are the different types of procrastination, And how to deal with it.

    Why are we leaving things for tomorrow?

    We procrastinate because we are divided, our brains are rational and this is reflected in the division of the limbic system and the cerebral cortex.

    We have an instinctive, fast, energetic, visceral brain that only thinks now, wants things now and doesn’t care about tomorrow, and we have another brain, the rational, the reflective, the one that thinks and analysis and he has trouble acting, he is slower and more careful, he knows where he wants to go and he thinks about the future.

    Procratination is the result of the struggle between the emotional brain and the rational brain and when the will of our reason gives way to the vagaries of instinct, it is when we recreate ourselves in procrastination.

    Related article: “What’s behind the habit of constantly postponing?”

    Different types of procrastination

    This phenomenon depends on several factors, therefore there are different types of procrastinators whichever factor weighs the most on each person. mostly:

    • Waiting: Low self-confidence.
    • Value: Dependence on reward and propensity for boredom.
    • impulsiveness: I can not wait.

    1. Expectation (confidence level)

    Excessive optimism leads us to inaction, Sitting while waiting for a miracle to happen.

    This optimism, understood as the difficulty attributed to the task, is particularly evident when estimating the time it will take us to reach our goal (planning error) and which ultimately tends to be greater than in our estimates.

    We usually try to calibrate the exercise needed to succeed with as little involvement as possible: We want the greatest reward with the least effort. There are procrastinators by excess and by lack of optimism, some believe themselves more capable than they really are, this leads them to failure. Others, and most of them are more pessimistic, are unaware of their capabilities and cannot even try.

    Balance is the key, tasks that result in an achievable challenge they are the ones who motivate us the most to act.

    Generates spirals of success

    If we set ourselves a progressive set of difficult but ultimately affordable goals, we will maximize our motivation and make sense of success, A reflection of our ability. Each hard-won victory gives us a new sense of ourselves and the desire to fight for more.

    In the early stages of a complex project, it is always better to have process or learning goals rather than product or outcome goals; in other words, the goals are to acquire or develop new skills or steps (the process) rather than achieving the highest mark (the product).

    The essence of the success spiral is that success creates confidence, Which in turn becomes stubbornness which generates more success.

    Encourage Yourself With Proxy Wins:

    Surround yourself with happy and upbeat people, attitudes are contagious. What others think can influence your intention to take action, Don’t share your plans with scary people, do it with people who trust you and encourage you to fight for what you want.

    Biographies of people who have inspiring lives and who we can feel identified with are powerful resources that can help us. Watch motivational films, attend discussions with successful people, be part of a group trying to improve yourself or society, volunteer or become your own support group.

    to see him

    The detailed mental recreation of a performance involves mirror neurons, which register it in the brain almost as deeply as if it were actually being performed. However, you are not satisfied with this, see beyond, after frankly imagining the finish line of a 10-kilometer race do a reflection exercise and we will place ourselves in reality, in your current situation.

    Observe this contrast, where you want to go and where you are at, then think about the first thing you need to do to reach your goal, what’s the first step? Take this step!

    Anticipate the worst and expect the best

    Avoid false hope syndrome, think carefully about what could go wrong, not to fall into catastrophism, but to prepare for possible setbacks. Asking someone else’s advice can help. Make a list of the ways you usually procrastinate and place it in your line of sight as you work.

    Avoid risky situations: turn off your cell phone and avoid other distractions before going to work. At work you have to take breaks so as not to overheat the engine, but stopping from time to time causes the engine to cool down and must be warmed up.

    Developing a contingency plan can also help: Have someone call if you think you might be tempted to encourage yourself to stay true to your pledge.

    Accept that you are addicted to procrastination

    Assuming that a single mistake results in a collapse of willpower may be helpful for some people, as in the case of Alcoholics Anonymous. Follow these guidelines:

    • save it: Think about times when you strayed from the goal and write it down.
    • Recognize that the will is betraying us with deceptions like: “it will only be this time”.
    • Keep this in mind the first deadline will allow you to justify all the others.

    2. Assessment (propensity to boredom)

    Faced with this kind of procrastination, the tasks must be made motivating.

    Turn your tasks into play, set goals

    The tasks we hate are among the ones we tend to postpone the most, especially repetitive, monotonous and very simple tasks.

    Turn it into a game: make boredom difficult, you have to find a balance between your own ability to perform the task and the difficulty of the task in question and thus generate a state of flux: a state of maximum concentration and involvement what You are doing.

    If you find it too difficult, you can get frustrated and give upIf it’s too easy, you’ll get bored and want to quit.

    Create a chain of small goals that serve to achieve a long term goal, this boss must be something motivating so that it is easy for you to move from one link in the chain to another. It’s easier to sweep the dining room if it’s part of a bigger plan: having a house party.

    Set positive goals, reformulate avoidance goals into approach goals:

    • Don’t focus on what you don’t want, but on what you want. It motivates more.
    • Getting promoted (approach) is better than getting them not to kick you out (avoidance).

    Distribute your energy well

    Fatigue makes us procrastinate, it’s hard for us to start if we have no energy, self-control and self-motivation will generate wear and tear. Recognizing that our energies are limited will help us distribute better.

    Do not have hungry, try to eat all five meals a day, eat a healthy balanced diet. If you eat junk food, you won’t be late, you will have low energy, and you will be an easy target for procrastination. Nuts and long-chain carbs are your best friend, but don’t forget the rest of your food and water.

    Getting cardiovascular exercise is essential to stay healthy, energetic and vital. It will increase the efficiency of the immune system, you will not get sick so often, you will feel invigorated and even if you think you do not have time for it, you only need half an hour three times a week and your productivity your health) will benefit greatly. What it costs is to start, once you get into it the hardest part is quitting. Outraged, schedule heavier tasks when you have peak power (Usually in the morning and noon).

    Get the hours you need to sleepUsually adults slept between 7 and 8 but it depends on each individual’s case. Practice good sleep hygiene, stick to bedtime and wake-up times.

    Respect your limits. If after all this you still feel tired, reduce your request or ask for help with everything, but don’t miss it.

    If you plan to procrastinate, do it right

    A lot of people start to clean the house, tidy up the storage room, or do all kinds of useful things but they distract them from what they really should be doing. In my teenage years, I had a classmate whose room was particularly tidy during exam time, because instead of being a student, which I had to do, I put everything in order.

    Look at this task that you should be doing but evading (eg // while studying). Set other tasks which, while less important, are also necessary and you are more than happy to do them (eg // tidy up the desk while listening to music).

    Find the balance between distracting yourself from the less important, more enjoyable tasks and the main task you are retiring from. You’ll end up doing it, but take a break do other tasks that you find more enjoyable.

    Combine unpleasant tasks with low prices

    Procrastinators don’t reward themselves after they finish their job. Giving self-praise messages and words of encouragement is a technique called “learned diligence.” it helps too, make that a part of your life.

    Make a list of low prices you can afford: go shopping, treat yourself to a breakfast fit for a king, go for a walk … whatever makes you tick.

    Promise yourself one of these rewards when you complete the task you are retiring from. Think of ways to make boring tasks more bearable: analyze political news around your favorite coffee shop, do laundry while listening to music, or study algebra with a friend.

    Make your passion your vocation

    Not everyone has the privilege of devoting themselves to what they are really passionate about, which is a shame as we have spent many hours of our lives working. However, some cannot choose, for several factors if you have the opportunity to combine your passion with your vocation do not hesitate, get started.

    If you can focus on what makes you jump out of bed every day to get to work, you will no doubt be successful in this area in the end.

    Also follow these tips:

    • Make a list of those occupations in which you are engaged in activities that you are passionate about.
    • Be honest with you: Throw out those that are beyond your possibilities or that require skills that you do not have and / or that you do not want to acquire.
    • Sort the ones you haven’t deleted yet according to labor market demand.

    If you are having difficulty in any of the above contact a vocational guidance service that they know how to effectively assess your skills, that they know how to orient you towards what you are good at and that you are more likely to be successful.

    3. Impulsivity (central element of procrastination)

    All of the above are helpful but what really sabotages us is our impulsiveness, the power of this instinctive brain, which is faster and more untamed than our rational brain. This is why when we think, “I shouldn’t have eaten this cake,” it is too late, for the emotional brain is like a wild horse with a lot of strength.

    Here we will learn how to use that other better trained horse, our reason, to make the chariot go where we want and not where our impulses take us.

    Pre-commitment: Make a commitment now to avoid temptation.

    Find out what your temptations are (what confuses you about the goal and wastes your time). Make a list. Put these temptations out of reach: put your phone in airplane mode when you study, install software that blocks Internet access at certain times of the day …

    Don’t let your needs reach a certain limit, if you need to make a game before you start studying, do it, the point is that your work is not interrupted because suddenly you can’t take it anymore and you have to play.

    Add deterrents to your temptations to make them repellant, if for example you prefer to stay home to sleep before going to the gym then engage with a friend to send you a picture of your soaked t-shirt afterwards the workout. you pay him an agreed amount.

    Use your attention to your advantage

    Learn to deal with distractions, Neutralize its effects on your willpower. To do this, you can use your attention:

    Imagine catastrophic consequences if you give in to your temptations, the more vividly you imagine, the more repulsive the disaster will become and the easier it will be for you to escape. It’s called secret consciousness, if, for example, you are thinking about quitting smoking, you can imagine your family crying heartbroken around your casket at the funeral home. Yes, it is very extreme, but the point is to help you get what you want.

    When a temptation arises, focus on the more abstract aspects. You’re more likely to stumble upon a burger with juicy meat, melted cheese, and crusty bread than if you look at its more abstract attributes like shape, how much weight you think it may have, etc.

    Eliminate, especially in your workplace, any inducement that is a distraction and an alternative replace these prompts with meaningful messages for you, Which connects you to your values ​​or to the reason you work. A photo of your family or the next vacation destination you want to go to can be good examples.

    Keep as much as possible the place where you work and where you practice your leisure activities. If, for example, you don’t have two computers, create at least two profiles with different wallpapers, this will give your brain the signal “working time” or “reading time”.

    Set specific goals

    It is the ultimate weapon against procrastination. Define your goals in a concrete way, knowing exactly what you need to do? and for when?

    Break long-term goals into short-term goals. If you have to study a textbook on human anatomy, start with the chapter that motivates you the most, first one, then another … not seeing the goal as a whole, breaking it down into small goals.

    When it is very difficult for you to start with a specific goal, suggest something that serves as an “ice breaker”, for example, if you intend to go to the gym but it makes you terribly lazy, just offer to put on your tracksuit, put on your sneakers and go with your bag to the door of the gym, nothing more. Once there you can turn around, but once you decide to leave the house everything will be fine. descent.

    Organize your goals into routines that are performed regularly, always at the same time and in the same place, so that habit and familiarity with the space will work in your favor.


    Procrastination is a complex phenomenon because there are many factors involved, we are constantly plunged into an internal struggle between desire and duty and sometimes we sabotage ourselves. Know your enemy, know how procrastination works and how to overcome it, and it will help you achieve your goals.

    Don’t leave it for tomorrow, put these tips into practice today.

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