Procrastinate on purpose

Procrastination tends to be more commonly grouped with other unconstructive behaviors such as laziness, stalling, sluggishness, time-wasting and obstructing. However, procrastination can also be a secret refuge for unfolding wonderful results. The pause between the intention to complete something and its actual completion is a potent motivator to unlocking ingenuity. It’s felt as a switch that gets turned on inside, like an alignment between cognizance and desired outcome.

Procrastination can be positively used as time of reflection, sifting through details and visually preparing the steps necessary for an accomplishment. Using procrastination to contemplate can be very powerful.

The effects of procrastination can be realized through a spark of creative genius, contagious enthusiasm or profound clarity. The exhilaration after completing an intended project can ignite elevated levels of inspiration and deep feelings of self worth.

Redefine procrastination as a positive pause for reflection

Of course prolonged procrastination can lead to unnecessary stress and habitual strain, which wreaks havoc on self-confidence. We are often unable to understand our causes of procrastination, and go into judgment, negativity and self doubt when our “to-do lists” continually grow. Studies show over-commitment leads to negative procrastination (and the false persona of being a super hero). Our inability to see through commitments exasperates our stress and clouds our judgment.

In order to avoid stress, it's important to create a plan and believe the plan will be accomplished. A common pitfall to negative procrastination is changing deadlines to fit into self-induced delays, which cause anxiety, lethargy, and poor sleep. Taking on more commitments does not initiate self worth.

Building trust is the key to positive procrastination. Trust follows integrity, and the goals we set out to accomplish must meet our intentions, otherwise our “word” holds little value.

To procrastinate on purpose is a personal choice and one that should be reviewed carefully. Kept in balance, procrastination acts as a foundation to a puzzle yet to be fully recognized.

Procrastination Tips

1. Be realistic about the number of commitments

Monitoring how much is enough is key to balance and follow through.

2. Make a plan and write out the details

Often times, projects are put on the back burner creating fuzziness about the particulars.

3. Create a deadline and stick to it

Balancing time can be a great way to ensure goals are met.

4. If you have several tasks, complete the one you like the least

This is a good psychological power play and motivator.

5. Carve out time

When you are so busy there is no time to complete projects, procrastination causes upset and stress.

6. Have integrity and trust yourself

The way we feel is a solo journey.

7. Give yourself a “reward” for accomplishing a difficult task

Celebrating yourself is very healing.

8. Redefine procrastination as a positive pause for reflection.

9. Lose the judgment

If procrastination follows a failure to accomplish something, be kind, patient, and recommit to following through next time.

10. Honor the time to contemplate your projects

Slowing down can provide another direction or path unavailable until now.

Positive procrastination
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Posted by Lisa M. Brazelton
With 24 years of executive leadership and entrepreneurial experience, Lisa believes in the field of human potential and is a facilitator of personal and organizational change. A six-time business executive in Facility Management, Executive Coaching and Training & Marketing, Lisa is dedicated to helping leaders who want to understand their deeper purpose, and unlocking the gifts hidden in the human heart.