Procrastination is standard human behavior. It is often seen as an activity that is not productive and can be harmful to the individual. However, some believe that Procrastination is a disease.
Why? Let’s explore why people usually assimilate it as a disease and clarify that Procrastination is not a disease but rather a typical human behavior.
Is Procrastination a disease?
The word “procrastination” comes from the Latin word “procrasare”, which means to postpone or delay. The etymology of the word speaks for itself. Procrastination is not a disease. It’s just an attitude that can be changed with hard work and dedication.
If we check the Wikipedia definition, we can’t find any “disease” word on it, but Procrastination is a behavior due to some psychological cause.
What does science say about Procrastination?
Many studies have been conducted on the topic of Procrastination.
One was done by Dr. Piers Steel, a professor of psychology at the University of Calgary in Canada. He defines Procrastination as “the voluntary delay of some important task, often to the point where it becomes an unpleasant or even painful experience.” He also points out that most people tend to put off tasks that they find unpleasant and instead engage in pleasurable activities like watching TV or playing video games.
Steel’s findings are based on research involving more than 700 students from different universities and colleges across Canada. The results showed that about 60% of the students surveyed were chronic procrastinators who tend to put off tasks for days, weeks, and even months before finally completing them.
Ok for young people but for us as a grown-up. We might think that with life experience and responsibility, we are smart enough to do things on time. So if we still procrastinate now, it should be because of something wrong.
So studies turn to adults with inattention, hyperactivity, impulsivity, and combined hyperactivity/impulsivity; psychotherapies for adults with attention‐deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
However, Procrastination is officially not acknowledged as an ADHD‐related symptom.
They have found that it is not a disease but rather a symptom of another underlying disorder. People can control their procrastination habits by changing their attitude towards the task at hand.
Many studies have been done on Procrastination. The consensus is that it is not a disease. It’s just a habit that can be changed with the right strategy.
So, why do we all think that Procrastination is a disease?
Procrastination is a common problem in the workplace. People usually use disease vocabulary to describe Procrastination. For example, they say that it is an illness or a condition, or we get some questions like :
👉 How do I cure chronic Procrastination?
👉 What is Procrastination? What is the cure?
👉 Do any of you suffer from the severe disease of Procrastination?
People try to “treat” Procrastination the same way as modern medicine. This can be misleading for people who are not aware of the difference between Procrastination and other diseases.
People usually use disease vocabulary to describe Procrastination because it is easier to think about. It’s easier to understand that someone has a disease than to know why they choose not do anything about their work. This is all due to the vocabulary we use.
The reality is because we “suffer” from it, and that’s the word, a medical one. We face Procrastination in our daily life. It affects our projects and our decisions, finally our whole life. In short, this is why we don’t have this dream life we want.
Procrastination is a harmful habit that can affect both productivity and mental health. People who suffer from this disease experience guilt, shame, anxiety, frustration, and discouragement. It is a behavior that is often associated with negative emotions. Feelings of low self-worth or incompetence can also cause it. It’s not a disease, though.
Is Procrastination cause is due to laziness?
Procrastination is seen as tomorrow’s problem and is often considered a sign of laziness, but it’s a symptom of something else.
Insecurities fears, or confusion. Procrastination is not about laziness!
It is a way to avoid doing something unpleasant or difficult.
Procrastination is a term used to describe the act of putting off or delaying an intended course of action despite its negative consequences. The mental mechanism behind procrastination behavior is complex, and many different factors contribute to it.
When it comes to Procrastination, there are two types of people:
👉 Those who are chronic procrastinators (who put off tasks consistently)
👉 Those who are occasional procrastinators (who put off tasks from time to time).
The difference between the two types of people is their attitude towards the task they are putting off. Occasional procrastinators tend to feel guilty about putting things off.
They might feel lazy or irresponsible when they do so, and this guilt can sometimes motivate them to get started on the task at hand. On the other hand, chronic procrastinators typically don’t feel any guilt when they put things off.
There are two main types of Procrastination: passive and active.
Passive Procrastination is when someone does not start a task because they are too busy with other tasks that seem more pressing, whereas active Procrastination is when someone starts a task but then stops before completing it.
The mental mechanism behind passive and active procrastination behavior can be attributed to one or more of the following: impulsivity, lack of motivation, perfectionism, boredom, fear of failure, lack of self-discipline, low self-esteem, and high levels of stress.
The key to overcoming Procrastination is to identify what triggers it in the individual and find a way to resolve those issues.
Procrastination Is A Symptom, Not A Cause
The result of Procrastination makes us feel mental emotions like :
Procrastination is a common phenomenon in which people tend to delay or postpone tasks that they are supposed to complete. There are many reasons people procrastinate, but the most common one is because of mental mechanisms.
The mental mechanism behind procrastination behavior could be perfectionism, impulsiveness, or a lack of time management skills.
When a person has perfectionism, they might think that the task or their work will not be good enough, so they delay it until it meets their standards or avoid something that they don’t want to do.
Other causes, too, include boredom or being overwhelmed by the task ahead.
2. Failure and frustration
Time management skills can lead someone not to have enough time to complete their tasks, making them feel like a failure or frustrated. If you try to treat Procrastination instead of the underlying cause, you will be constantly frustrated and discouraged.
3. Guilty and pressure
When we define ourselves as procrastinators, we feel well and feel guilty. Because impulsiveness can cause someone to do something else instead of what they should be doing, they now have a feeling of shame, which brings guilt and pressure.
4. All emotions bring a physical effect.
👉 Stress and Anxiety
They might have anxiety about the task at hand and feel overwhelmed by it, or they may have an addiction that distracts them from doing anything else.
The most common cause is anxiety. It means that the person has an issue with their work or struggling with self-esteem and doesn’t believe in themselves enough to complete it.
👉 Lost of sleep
Those mental emotions make the person to lost their sleep. It will be worse because losing sleep harms productivity. So this is a circle.
How do you overcome Procrastination?
The first step to overcoming Procrastination is identifying the root cause and then taking the appropriate measures to fix it.
👉 Fear: Identify what you are afraid of and then do it anyway.
👉 Perfectionism: Break down tasks into smaller steps and reward yourself with minor milestones along the way.
👉 Lack of motivation: What motivates you and start doing more rewards activities.
When the root is identified, we have to re-think our behavior, which can be cured by willpower.
We clarify that Procrastination is not a disease, but deeply in our minds, we want to be a disease like this, we could treat it.
When we suffer about something, we always try to find another reason. It is a way to don’t admit the true causes. We all can overcome Procrastination, but it needs dedication. Admit that we are procrastinator is the first step to solving it 😄
Thanks for reading. 🚀