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Procrastination, I believe, can function in our lives in several different ways. Usually, we understand procrastination to exist in the form of putting off or delaying something we don’t want to do. However, procrastination can also manifest in our lives when we even delay working towards something we’re excited about. We fear the success, achievement, or happiness about to enter our lives and we delay the moment of triumph. Either way, we’re keeping ourselves from reaching a closure or completion of something we’ve begun. So, today on La.Rue, I want to talk about how to stop procrastinating and opening yourself up to success. Whether you’re in college, work-from-home, in the office, or somewhere in between, this blog is for you. In some way, we all procrastinate, most often on things that could create great change in our lives.
So, what keeps us from moving forward? Are we unmotivated? Lazy? Scared of success? Scared of failure? Take a moment to think about what you’ve been procrastinating on lately. Is it a work project? A Paper? An important email? Starting a new Side Hustle? Now ask yourself why you’ve been procrastinating. Now let me clarify, I know we all procrastinate on little things, doing the dishes, cleaning the house, doing the laundry, etc. But for the sake of this blog and the advice being given, today, we’re thinking much bigger and beyond those little things. Ask yourself, or even pull out a sheet of paper, and write down all of the major things you’ve procrastinated on because you weren’t ready for the result. Let’s talk about this…
Procrastination as a Result of Fear
Most often, we procrastinate on a major project because we’re scared of the result. We fear the change it may bring or even the lack of change. Change is one of the only constants in our lives. Everything around us is constantly changing, and we are always evolving. So the only thing that actually remains stagnant in our lives is the fact that things are always changing. So why do we fear change and why do we procrastinate as a way to keep things from changing? The best thing we can do for ourselves in order to stop procrastinating (out of fear of the results or change) is to understand what may change. Approach situations with a mindset prepared for change and for any outcome. Ask yourself what happens if I follow through on this project. Because it might just bring the greatest changes of your life.
To achieve a higher level of success, we must be willing to put in the work and do it to the absolute best of our abilities. Fear is one of the most natural instincts and emotions we face; so, why do we apply it to success or change? Start changing your procrastination efforts into mindset shifts. Change your internal dialogue and shift your thoughts on success. You can achieve this by practicing affirmations for success, essentially re-wiring your brain, reminding yourself that it is safe to achieve new things and create change. You can also achieve this by practicing a more solid and functioning routine. When you have a routine you can rely on to push you, you’re more likely and more motivated to complete your projects.
Procrastination as a Lack of Motivation
Motivation is what drives us to make progress in our lives. When we lack that motivation, it’s usually a force (like a deadline) that drives us to complete something. When we lack motivation, we often lack passion and drive as well. We hope that over time this will change and somehow the desire to procrastinate will fade. We can’t rely on the inevitability of change and hope that new motivation will somehow miraculously appear. If you’re procrastinating as a lack of motivation, it’s usually because something needs changing, and you’re going to have to take control and make the change. Most people fear major change. As a result, we adopt a habitual hesitation of avoiding change rather than embracing it.
So, how do you stop procrastinating and move into a place where you can achieve a higher level of success? Now, I could feed you a bunch of advice similar to what comes up if you google “how do I stop procrastinating?” I could say, time manage, commit, minimize distractions, etc. But, the science behind procrastination argues that it’s all in your subconscious, and it’s up to you to re-program you’re thought process behind it. Do you feel incapable of change? Do you fear change? Start by asking yourself what “bad thing” happens if you make a change? If you succeed? If you reach all of your potential success?
Working within the Subconscious to Stop Procrastination Habits
In a Podcast, I will greatly expand on this topic and the work I’ve done within my subconscious to work through my fears of success and failure. But for today, I want to offer a few ways you can begin working within your subconscious to re-wire your thought processes and stop procrastinating. More often than not, we can recognize when we’re procrastinating. When you find yourself procrastinating on a major task or project out of fear of failing or creating change, acknowledge that you’re halting progress. Ask yourself why you think you’re procrastinating and why that specific reason is keeping you from making progress. Next, visualize your success. Sit down and visualize yourself completing the task and the success or change that comes from it. What “bad thing” happens when you reach that moment?
When you’re able to get out in front of your fears, acknowledge them, and even welcome them into your life, you’re able to make much greater progress towards success. The “bad thing” that happens is usually something not even rooted in reality but something we’ve manifested out of other fears we face. Procrastination is one of the many ways we can keep ourselves from making progress in our lives. So, if you’re procrastinating on something right now, sit down and ask yourself the real reason why; because I’m betting you it’s not because you’re too busy. Learn more about ways you could be keeping yourself from making progress in your life on the 4 Signs You’re Self-Sabotaging & How to Stop blog.