Are you tired of your mind playing tricks on you? You want to do your work because you know it’s important. Then there is another part of your mind telling you to stop worrying about it and reminding you the world isn’t going to end right now. It’s confusing, and if you have dealt with this situation, it’s stressful to overcome this feeling. But, what are the roots of procrastination? And…how can we stop them for good?
Let’s Start with the Bad News
No matter whatever we do to break the habit (even if we do our work properly), our brains are designed in a way to procrastinate. Ok, yes — this is confusing, but think of it this way. Procrastination is like a little ball in the trillion of other things your brain thinks about. Now, take this ball and squish it in the back of the brain. Can you picture that? Good. This is a habit that is deeply ingrained in our brain and this little ball shoots upward slowly as you have chores or tasks to do. This is our brain giving alternative options to do rather than doing the work we’re supposed to do.
We have one part of our brain that makes rational decisions and then another part that only thinks about the present moment. This part doesn’t care about the past or future, leading to an internal conflict when work shows up. One part wants to do the work now and get it over with, while the other part wants to do everything. There is no gray zone here, only the part of the brain which thinks about the present, the part which has no worries whatsoever.
People might get trapped inside this ball and will fall into the net and become prey to procrastination. Others can hold themselves accountable and say “no” to this ball and kick it back to where it came from. It depends on whether our brain can say no to our brain. Yes, that’s right. Our brain gives us the idea of procrastination, but it’s also able to say no. It’s a war against two different sides of our brain. The question we should be asking is “Which side will win?”
That falls into our hands. No, not literally our hands, but our own decision. There are several tricks to make smarter decisions that our brains will not be able to disobey. We can control our decisions based on how we view problems and each scenario. If we teach our brains to follow a specific method, then our brains will resist bringing back that ball of procrastination, and soon, this habit will be broken.
Now that I have spent so much time talking about the ways that procrastination is a habit we must break, let’s take a look at the flip side.
The Good Side of Procrastination
People say that procrastination is a bad thing and makes us lazy, unsuccessful, bad people, and so on. However, everyone faces moments where we procrastinate! The world has created associations around the word procrastination and labeled it as negative. However, what if I said procrastination helps us slow down or delay the time before we take a course of action. You might even describe this as being patient!
Would you like to be called a patient calm person a lazy procrastinator? We would all pick the first option. In reality, these words have similarities. Sometimes, procrastinating is a good thing, because it shows that you are being a thoughtful person and putting enough time into something so that you can do the right thing. For example, say that you have to make a big choice that can impact your life. It can be a career or moving to a new place. Would you want to make rush the decision or take time to consider your options slowly? If you would take your time, that is not all that different from procrastinating!
The main thing we need to do is identify what the situation is that we are in and take a moment to reflect. There is a time we should take our time and a time we shouldn’t. Being people, our brains have developed a lot. One of the best things humans can do is to think independently about everything! Our brain has improved a lot in ways scientists are yet to explore, so make good use of it!
Can we really banish that part of your brain which wants to make things easy and have fun? No, not really, but there are ways you can control it. And, frankly, some moments in our life require us to have that fun and easygoing part of our brain. Life will include hurdles and we can’t always work. We need to understand a balance between work and fun, to live our best and most successful life. Our brains help humans function in a unique way compared to any other type of species in the world.
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Inside the mind of a master procrastinator | Tim Urban. YouTube, uploaded by TED, April 6th, 2016, Inside the mind of a master procrastinator | Tim Urban
Procrastination. YouTube, uploaded by Domics, August 16th, 2016, Procrastination