Does it occur to you why you are not able to get your work done in time? Why is there always an excuse to finish work later? Do you leave your work for tomorrow and tomorrow’s work for the day after tomorrow and so on? If yes then you are highly suffering from Procrastination at work and you need to stop it.
Procrastination at work means delaying work intentionally without any legit reason. You are sitting there idol looking at your screen and yet you are not accomplishing your daily tasks. There are many reasons as to why you have developed procrastinating habits and many reasons why you need to stop it.
What Causes Procrastination at Work?
Procrastination is not merely a bad habit rather it could vary from your mental health to eating disorders. You could be doing so many things wrong that could sum up to cause you procrastinating.
Let us go over some of the major reasons that lead to procrastination.
1. Fear of Failing
Many experts, including psychiatrists, are of the view that people tend to delay a task because they are afraid of the outcome. At work, people do not assign you tasks as per your liking but according to workload and task management. Sometimes they hand over a task that you do not know how to achieve and you do not even try because you are afraid of the results and that leads you to procrastinate.
2. Lack of Confidence
People often lack confidence and have low self-esteem that does not allow them to move forward with their tasks. This directly connects with the fear of failing. When you lack the confidence to do anything, you fear you might fail to accomplish a given task perfectly.
3. Poor Time Management
Time management is one of the major causes of procrastination at work. Failing to complete a task in working hours is not a habit but an inability to manage time efficiently.
4. Lack of Focus
Most people struggle in keeping focus at work. They are easily distracted by the things happening around them. Sometimes all they need is a quiet and smooth working environment to stop their procrastination.
5. Stress or Mental Health Issues
At times, even the most professional and efficient ones fall out of line. Those who delivered great results suddenly start struggling with deadlines. Procrastination at work is not a routine for these people. Sometimes, it is only stress that keeps them tied up elsewhere. This results in all of the major causes of procrastination.
There lie many solutions parallel to as many causes as there are for this. Developing good and effective habits to overcome procrastination can bring a positive change in your work routine.
Productive Ways to Overcome Procrastination
Pomodoro in Italian literally means ‘tomato’ and it also takes its origin from the vegetable. Pomodoro is a time management technique that was founded by an Italian student back in the 1980s. The student named Cirillo struggled with his studies so he developed a method to stay focused on studies while giving himself short breaks after a while. Later he wrote a book on it and thus everyone got familiar with the concept. Connection of tomato to the story? Cirillo was in the kitchen watching a tomato-shaped clock. Interestingly, this made him think of the technique.
Pomodoro technique is not just to stay focused but to avoid procrastination and manage time efficiently while making the most out of it to accomplish tasks. You pick a task you dedicate 25 minutes of focus to the task and then you take 5 minutes of a relaxing break. As you go on, you increase the time of the intervals to 10 to 15 minutes. This helps in accomplishing difficult tasks by breaking them down and making them simpler.
Form a To-Do-List
To-do-list may sound very conventional but it comes in handy. You can keep track of your tasks with it and make your work plan according to it. It also helps in managing time for particular tasks. You can start by categorizing your tasks from high priority to lower. You can then start with urgent and high-priority tasks. Be done with it while following Pomodoro Technique. Tick off the tasks that you accomplish and move on to the next. You can even break down the list into even smaller tasks and go with the flow.
If you want to successfully become an anti-procrastinator, there should be a reward for it. Nothing beats a fruitful reward. When you set targets for the day and you successfully manage to achieve them, treat yourself to something good. It could be either something you like to eat, a good timeout, or a family outing.
Setting rewards for yourself helps motivate you to do better. In your quest to acquire the reward, you manage to get things done timely.
Create a Working Environment
If you are working from home, there is a high probability of getting distracted from work. To do work in time and to avoid procrastination, you need to set up a peaceful working environment where you can focus on work. Set up a small workspace for yourself and keep everything you need on your table. If there is too much noise around you, shut the door and focus.
If you are working from the office and your colleagues and coworkers are too noisy and always gossiping with each other, you can ask for a quieter place to work. The environment has a drastic effect on your work. If your workplace is the reason you cannot finish work on time then you need to switch.
Try Active Procrastination
If you must procrastinate, you should focus on active procrastination. Active procrastination is a term used when you put off some of your tasks for later to do something more urgent. This approach works well for those who work efficiently under pressure.
Studies show that people have achieved better results who implement active procrastination at work than those who do procrastinate. This helps in time management and prioritizing your tasks.
Consider the Consequences
Some people are habitual procrastinators while some are just lazy. These job workers start their work late while not keeping account of the consequences they will have to face later on. When the time is over, they regret starting late and end up failing at their task. You will leave pending tasks for tomorrow and eventually create a bad reputation for yourself at work.
If you consider the consequences of delaying the work beforehand, you will start as early as you can. You will then make the most out of the available time.
Procrastination is one out of many bad things that we need to get rid of from our work routine. People connect laziness with procrastination. While both are interlinked, both the terms are slightly different from one another. A lazy person is just lazy who has developed a bad habit of delaying work. However, a procrastinator can be suffering from one too many things that are causing him to procrastinate. We have discussed some of the causes and solutions to the problem and we hope it will help you get rid of procrastination.