On the Job

3 reasons you procrastinate

Procrastination has stopped many great ideas from making it into this world.

Not all procrastination, however, is created equal, and there is no delay that can’t be surpassed with some thoughtful actions.

There are three big reasons why we procrastinate and three simple ways you can conquer it.

You Need Time: Science now shows that the brain continues to work even after you have stopped consciously thinking about an idea. In fact, thinking about something too hard can block your brain from coming up with the smartest answer.

In other words, sometimes it isn’t really procrastination; you just need more time for the idea to gestate. Try not to confuse laziness for a genuine need to sit with an idea longer.

You Need Resources: The procrastination may be you actually missing a piece that will help you complete the task. Outside input, more money or another edge could help you move out of your slump.

It is often a matter of doing something the same way you usually do – and needing to realize that it isn’t working. For instance, if you are used to doing things by yourself, then consider pulling in a collaborator or friend to help you come up with a solution.

You Need a Smaller Goal: In the ultimate contradiction, your very ambition could be keeping you from even getting started. The more grandiose the plan, the more pressure we automatically put on ourselves to succeed.

Try taking your big, ultimate goal and breaking it down into a few reasonable milestones. Reaching the first moderate goal will help give you the momentum and confidence needed to complete the next task.