Even grandmother taught us from childhood: "What you can do today, do not delay tomorrow!" Easier said, than done - about one in five suffers from experts according to procrastination ("adjournment", postponement). What is often dismissed as laziness can develop into a veritable disease: chronic procrastination is characterized by counterproductive, superfluous and delaying behavior.
Procrastination common among students
Since the mid-'80s, scientists have been researching "postponement" and have come to the conclusion that students in particular suffer from the phenomenon of procrastination because they suddenly manage their own routine at the university (often alongside work) after school with a set timetable and organize long-term projects. Especially the students of the less organized humanities are affected.
Eliyahu M. Goldratt therefore called procrastination as a student syndrome. Men are more prone to procrastination than women.
Therapy or overcoming the pig dog?
In severe cases, procrastination can occur in combination with anxiety, desire for perfection, depression, boredom or fear of failure. The result is a vicious circle: the person suffering from procrastination is helpless in the face of the ever-growing mountain of unskilled labor. While he knows about the consequences if he does not do the work, he is put under even greater pressure and ultimately gets frustrated. Sometimes only behavioral therapy can lead to this dilemma.
15 tips against procrastination
But it does not have to come that far! Man is a creature of habit, and even with the habit of postponing everything, we can break by training other behaviors. With these 15 rules we show you how to break the vicious circle of procrastination.
1. Start immediately
When you get a task or idea that you want to realize, start with it. The chance of realizing a project drops to just one percent after the first three days.
2. The most unpleasant task first
Start with the most unpleasant task. Habitually, this is the longest delayed out. However, if you have mastered it as your first task of the day, the following work will not seem so bad.
3. Divide work into appetizers
Make a small task out of a mammoth task. Otherwise the work seems overwhelming and insoluble. Focus not only on the seemingly endless path, but keep an eye on the goal.
4. firm will
Use the power of thought! An idea consolidates with the frequency. Keep telling yourself that you can do it instead of thinking, "That can not be done ..."
5. Forget perfection
Stop wanting to be perfect. As a result, you get bogged down and finally step on the spot. Instead, focus on the essentials.
6. Praise yourself!
Praise instead of doubting. Honor partial successes. Praise leads to motivation and strengthens confidence in one's own powers. This actually increases performance.
7. Your own rhythm is important
Take note of your body rhythm: Every person has their own rhythm. Whether we are late sleepers or early risers determine our genes. Instead of fighting against it, you should try to accomplish difficult tasks in your personal performance phases.
8. Avoid interference
Do not be distracted. Try to avoid interference, be it from colleagues, the phone or your own distracted thoughts. Just try to focus on what you are doing.
9. Set time limit
Set a time limit. The more time you have for a project, the longer you will need it. However, without improving the result, as the focus is not limited to the essentials. If you predate a delivery date in the calendar, you will gain additional correction time.
10. Pressure by others
Integrate your environment. As everyone knows, shared suffering is half suffering. Not only teamwork makes the postponement difficult; Anyone who reports to colleagues and friends about his intentions creates an external pressure and thus a new incentive.
11. Do not lie to yourself
Be honest with yourself. Are you just making an excuse to postpone something, or is something else really more important?
© istockphoto, PeskyMonkey
Distinguish what is important according to importance. It is best to use a list to plan in advance which tasks have the highest priority and thus have to be done first. But also stick to this plan.
13. Break planning
Stay realistic in your task planning. Do not take too much and schedule breaks. Take these breaks also for regular sports. Yoga, jogging or Pilates are ideal for getting away from stress.
14. Recognize your own achievements
Be aware of your achievements and strengths. This is more effective than spending your energy fighting your weaknesses.
15. Welcome tasks
Accept work as part of your life. Try not only to view your job as a chore, but to take the opportunity to actively shape it. Trick out your thoughts by convincing yourself that even the most boring tasks are terribly interesting.