Procrastination How To Stop Wasting Time & Postponing Your Work

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Procrastination Basics – How To Stop Procrastinating

Procrastination is the number one enemy of your productivity and your ceiling for achievement in life. There’s nothing more unproductive than knowing what you should do and why you should do it, but then not doing it.

It’s something that many of us do more often than we’d like to admit — myself included.

But be aware…

Every time you postpone your work, you strengthen the chains of procrastination. Then one day, you notice how much inner resistance you feel towards practically any type of work, no matter how simple the task.

And that’s when most people label themselves as lazy. But the truth is, you don’t procrastinate because you are lazy. Procrastination has completely different reasons for existing. It’s rooted much deeper into the mind.

Procrastination Is Nothing New

Procrastination can best be described as the behavior of acting against your better judgment. It’s when you do X when you know you should be doing Y. It’s when you’re watching Netflix when you know you should be writing your book or studying for your exam.

The procrastination problem is so old that the ancient Greeks used to call it ‘akrasia.’ Thus, procrastination is nothing new — and there’s nothing wrong with you if you procrastinate. We all suffer from it, including some of the greatest minds of this world.

The key, however, is to become aware of when you’re considering putting off your work and to catch what’s going through your mind at those times. What you’ll find is that your ‘present self’ is not aligned with your ‘future self.’

The Battle Between The ‘Present Self’ And ‘Future Self’

We practically have two versions of ourselves. First of all, we have a ‘future self.’ This version is the one who sets goals and dreams about how awesome & successful our future will be. This version also realizes the importance of hard work, consistency, and getting the job done.

But then, there’s our ‘present self,’ and the present self is the one who is responsible for actually sitting down and doing the job. It’s my present self that is currently writing this post, not my future self. The future self, however, is the one who came up with the idea and goal for creating this post.

The problem is that the present self prefers instant gratifications over long-term rewards — or delayed gratification — and therefore the two versions clash often.

This is what psychologists refer to as ‘time inconsistency’, which is the brain’s preference for instant rewards even though they conflict with our long-term goals.

Where the present self wants to watch Netflix or play Call of Duty, the future self wants to write. Yet, it’s only the present self who can get the job done, not the future self. That’s why the most successful people among us are long-term oriented, while most people living in mediocrity are short-term oriented.

When the present self and future self aren’t aligned with each other, we start to give in to instant gratifications like social media, Netflix, video games, fast-food or other distractions that make us feel good in an instant. In other words, this is when we procrastinate.

Sometimes the present self and the future self are completely aligned with each other. Our present self feels motivated to sit down and do the work that our future self demands and expects. In those moments, our actions match our ambition. This is by no means random, although it often may feel like it.

How To Stop Procrastinating

To align the present self and future self with each other, we can apply many different strategies. In fact, I created an entire training course on this topic.

For example, you can change your state using ‘state change hacks’, focus on the long-term negative consequences of procrastination instead of on the short-term pleasure of postponing your work or create clarity to remove the ambiguity that often causes procrastination.

Furthermore, you should resolve to work on your most important tasks in the morning in order to avoid ‘productive procrastination’ and use the twin-forces of ‘pain’ and ‘pleasure’ to stop putting off your work.

This way, you’ll keep procrastination on the low.

Free Stop Procrastinating Guide:

If you struggle with procrastination more than you’d like, download the 18-page ‘How To Stop Procrastinating’ Guide right now! In this guide, you’ll learn the exact psychological reasons why you procrastinate and the specific strategies to get rid of it for good.

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