...I was faced with rushing to do what needed to be done, praying I had enough energy to keep going until I was done and enough time left to complete.
Scarlett O’Hara Syndrome
“I can't think about that right now. If I do, I'll go crazy. I'll think about that tomorrow.” – Scarlett
There’s so much more to procrastination than putting something off. To tell someone who chronically puts things off, to “’just do it’ would be like saying to a clinically depressed person, ‘cheer up. (Jaffe, 2013)’”
I remember days of putting off, delaying, dealing with it later, etc. It was all well and good until due dates were just around the corner and I was faced with rushing to do what needed to be done, praying I had enough energy to keep going until I was done and enough time left to complete. All-nighters are not fun when you are stressing to complete a project.
I used to say, “I work better under pressure.” When in fact I meant I work better when I can discipline myself to keep at the job at hand. A chronic procrastinator may have impulsivity and self-discipline issues. There are ways to gently work on those issues, by starting small and in daily routines.
Some procrastinators may actually be dealing with self-esteem issues, negative self-talk, time management, fear of failure/success or a variety of other issues. This will take some self-analysis and work to get to the root and help resolve the issues so that procrastination can be resolved.
The first thing to do, is sit down, and being honest with yourself, figure out why you want to put off this task. That will lead you to your next steps to defeating your internal Scarlett.
Jaffe, E. (2013, April). Why Wait? The science behind procrastination. Association for
Psychological Science. Retrieved from https://www.psychologicalscience.org