Fellow procrastinators, if we had a penny for every project or task we never finished, we’d never collect them all cause we’d put it off for another time.
This is probably the worst enemy we learned about since we’ve grown up.
We were warned about laziness and apathy, but this is a different animal altogether.
Almost everyone procrastinates to some degree. We often find relief in this fact, but then stress when we realise that we’re procrastinating more than our friends or family.
The biggest hurdle with procrastination is the psychological burden it throws on our shoulders. With laziness, you’re just apathetic, you don’t care.
However with procrastination, we feel guilt and shame when we realise we didn’t finish our tasks. We actually care about completing these tasks and not finishing weighs heavily on our consciences.
Moreover, the shame and guilt are carried over.
We lose our self confidence and become somewhat accepting of an image of ourselves being unsuccessful.
This leads us to believe that we’re failures. It’s not odd to think that. If we look at someone around us who doesn’t procrastinate or does but less than us, we’ll see them accomplishing a lot more than us, and we’ll immediately reflect on ourselves and believe that we’re less than them, if they’re called successful, then that means we are failures.
Having said that, just because a premise and a conclusion were built in a logical order, doesn’t mean that the outcome is true.
For starters, we misinterpreted the meaning of failure.
Success and failure have largely varying meanings across each of our minds. If we were asked to say the first word that pops in our head for both meanings, we’d have a large pool of premature and inaccurate pictures depicting mostly wealth and trophies.
Success can easily be associated with financial power for example, but does that mean that a billionaire whose family doesn’t spend time with him is successful still?
If an athlete wins the trophy they wanted, but is hated by their teammates and asked to leave the team despite their individual talents, is that success?
If someone is a workaholic and gets promoted rapidly, but their mental health is deteriorating, is that successful?
It is debatable, but failure and success are not fixed terms. They do not mean the same thing for every one and it should be that way.
That’s not compromise or choosing an easier route. It’s realising that the meanings of success and failure depend solely on the long term goals unique to each person.
Procrastination is something that can be beaten and can be overcome.
It takes time though, you don’t beat it overnight. It’s probably something we can get better at beating over the course of our lives, but that means it’s a lifelong journey.
So whilst I have the utmost faith that anyone one of us can overcome procrastination, I don’t want us to go through that journey thinking we’re failures. Simply because it’s not true, and it would hinder you overcoming it.
Failure is only deciding never to try again. It’s not just giving up, it’s giving up forever.
It’s not, not succeeding. A double negative that is crucial in explaining what I mean.
There’s so much more to life than what social media or movies depict as success.
Your family, your character, your health, your community, so many examples that can be viewed in the scope of success that can be overlooked for the sake of success in terms of a career or money.
If you’re procrastinating, then I assume you have goals, otherwise you wouldn’t be procrastinating anything.
Make those goals closer, arrange them according to what is short and long term, and what is a priority and what is not. Get rid of the habits you normally fall in to when procrastinating. Find someone who will keep you accountable, someone that pushes you against yourself.
Don’t give in to your frustrations, don’t believe what you or anyone might tell yourself. Don’t carry around shame or guilt, it’s useless. It only serves to you slow you down, there’s no point.
Whatever it is you do, no matter how long it takes, keep at it. Failure isn’t how long it takes you to get there, as long as you get somewhere. Failure is not the equivalent of not succeeding, failure is when there is no longer a living person in you working hard at life.
You procrastinate, that’s okay. That can change.
You’re not a failure, go be yourself, and live a life free of shame from procrastination.