Procrastination: Why We Do It And How Do We Beat It? – Dan Guillermo

Procrastination: Why We Do It And How Do We Beat It?

By Dan Guillermo | Personal Development

We all procrastinate at one time or another. Whether we look through Facebook posts to avoid working on that big presentation or get sucked down into the rabbit hole of the Internet hole instead of working on that 5th SEO article about horse breeding, procrastination is a common tactic we use to avoid tasks that we deem unpleasant.

To end our tendency to procrastinate, we need to know why we do it in the first place. That's why this article will discuss why we procrastinate, as well as tell you ways that you can tamper down the urge to get lost in the Instagram posts of celebrities.

Why Do We Procrastinate?

We don't all fool around when we should be working for the exact same reason. Sometimes, different tasks call for different procrastination techniques. You may also procrastinate in a way that is very dissimilar to your friends who work in the same industry. While getting tips to beat this bothersome tendency is always great, it's vital that you know how and why you avoid working on important work assignments. That's why this article will give you three reasons why many people procrastinate, even when the assignment they're working on is the utmost priority.

You're Working On a Task That Is Either Too Hard or Too Boring

No one likes being in the weeds when it comes to their work. For this reason, many of us hold off on working on important assignments until the very last minute. But this tactic could end up with disastrous results if you're not careful. If you're dealing with a really hard assignment, try and get some direction from your boss. If you work from home, try to break the assignment up into workable chunks. Often you'll find that once you start on your work, you'll do more than you were originally expecting to do in one sitting.

Believe it or not, many of us procrastinate because the job set before us is too easy. We may think that the work is beneath us, or we might believe that we can put it off until it is the last minute. But one of the worst things about procrastination is that much of the time, you end up wasting more time thinking about working than you would actually spend if you were, you know, working. So if the job is really, really simple, just get it out of the way so that you have more time to spend watching cat videos on YouTube!

You're Overwhelmed

You have a mountain of work to do and not a lot of time to do it. You're freaked out, so what do you do? You go to YouTube and try to find a way to listen to your favorite band's new album. You can't find it, so you get distracted by YouTube randomness. Next thing you know, a whole day has gone by and you still have a looming deadline.

When you're overwhelmed by all the work you have to do, it's important to just relax for a moment and take a breath. It will get done. Just create a to-do list related to the job, put yourself in a distraction-free environment, and get to work.

You Need a Break

Some people find that they tend to slack off at certain parts of the day. No, you're not being lazy. This is actually normal. Most of us can't sit at a computer and work for 7-9 hours. That's insanity. If you find that your mind begins to wander after 90 minutes to 2 hours of work, perhaps get up from your laptop and take a 5-10 minute walk. You can also talk to a friend or stretch for a bit. Take a break. You deserve it. But don't forget to get back to work!

Tips For Beating Procrastination

Take note of how you procrastinate: We all have our chosen methods of procrastination. Whether it's social media, your favorite blogs, cleaning house, or checking your phone 10 times an hour, figure out what you do to avoid tasks. Then make it harder to do these activities when work needs to get done. For example, if you don't need the Internet to do your work, you can use apps such as SelfControl and Freedom to block the Internet for a specified amount of time.

Make work tasks achievable: One procrastination buster that a lot of people like is the Pomodoro method. First, set your smartphone alarm for 25 minutes. Then do nothing but work for that time. When the alarm goes off, you get a 5-minute break. After the 5 minutes are up, it's back to work. Repeat until the job is done.

Factor in “procrastination time”: In fantasy land, every assignment would take as long as the task is supposed to take. But you have a life and life often interrupts your career. When telling a client how long a project is going to take, always factor in a bit of cat video watching time into the equation. But just a little bit! No client will pay you to watch YouTube all day.

Give yourself deadlines: If you work from home, not having deadlines over your head may not work as well as you originally hoped. Those entrepreneurs who constantly save work until the last possible minute could give themselves deadlines to complete tasks. Throw some accountability into the equation by asking a friend to hold you to said deadline.

Is procrastination a problem for you?  Do you find yourself geting lost in the Twitterverse or staring into the Spacebook? How do you get things done?


About the Author

Dan is happily married for 18 years and has 2 wonderful children. After experiencing success in the corporate world, Dan decided it was time to start a business of his own. He has been in Internet Marketing for 3 years now and has built an online business that is growing every year. Dan created a 10 part video course on Affiliate Marketing which you can access free of charge by clicking here.

  • Hi Dan, I would have to say, overwhelmed and lack of knowledge about the subject (so fear of the unknown) are my biggest procrastination instigators. Thanks for the post!

  • Hi Dan,

    Procrastination is probably the #1 obstacle to the success of most bloggers and online marketers.

    I coach bloggers who have many struggles, but most of the struggles begin and end with procrastination.

    Deadlines are so important to getting your blog running on high octane.

    Maybe the biggest issue with people procrastinating is trying to be perfect before completing a project.

    It never gets done because, naturally, it is NEVER perfect.

    Sticking to strict deadlines gets you past this because when the deadline comes, your project is complete… ready or not… perfect or not.


    • Guilty….I have definitely had my share of procrastination. Trying to get it perfect was always one of the main culprits. Now I tend to get ready, fire, then aim.

      Thanks for stopping by..

  • Susan Velez says:

    Hey Dan,

    These are some great tips for avoiding procrastination. I actually used to be guilty of spending so much time on Facebook when I started my blog.

    Sometimes it can’t be helped, especially, when you’re trying to learn how to do something. I quickly realized that my time spent on it wasn’t helping me get closer to my goals.

    Now I have a to-do list each and everyday. I focus on the big tasks early in the morning. Like if I have to create a YouTube video or write a blog post, I do that the first thing in the morning.

    I seem to be more productive in the mornings. Once I get those big tasks out of the way, I then can breathe a little because I’ve accomplished the tasks that take the most time.

    Around 1:00 PM, my productivity level goes way down. I am such a morning person 🙂

    I also like keeping everything I do to grow my blog on Trello. This helps me see my continual growth and keeps me in line with my game plan.

    Thanks for sharing these tips, I know they will help people overcome their procrastination and just get things done.

    Have a great day 🙂


  • Joy Healey says:

    Hi Dan,

    At this very moment I am procrastinating because I am waiting for someone to ring me and confirm that they have done something that’s mentally blocking me from moving forward to concentrate on something totally unrelated – if that makes sense.

    Problem is, I’ve been waiting for two weeks, and my head just won’t go from the people I can’t control, so me – who I should be able to control 🙁

    What a silly state of affairs.

    However, at least I’m doing something productive by commenting on blogs 🙂

    Joy – Blogging After Dark

  • Clay Smith says:

    Hello there Dan,

    This is my first time at this blog. I actually read many of your posts, but this one made me comment for the first time here.

    You should know that I procrastinate things a lot. I’m trying to find ways to defeat it. I consider as a serious danger to success.

    You mentioned some good points here and liked the way that you do not go around the bush. Just set the things on the table and ready to go, right?

    I will stick around your website because I see this blog where I can grab knowledge to myself. Kudos to you.


    Clay Smith.

  • Hi Dan, oh yes procrastination can be a problem for me from time to time.
    I find if I do the hard stuff first I can get more done. Or if I break things down into pieces, and do a piece at a time that helps too.
    Otherwise I go on to other things and never do the thing that need to be done – not good!
    I like your idea of a deadline, that usually works for me.
    Thanks for the tips Dan.

  • Sue Bride says:

    Hi Dan, I’m pleased to discover your blog after you commented on mine. I’m really good at procrastination – or should that say bad. It’s a skill I developed over many years 🙂

    I think confidence is often an issue for me. I come up with an idea and then wonder if it is good enough. I have quite a trail of abandoned projects that never saw the light of day. Some took up a lot of time too.

  • Mark says:

    Excellent advice Dan!

    And I love your play on words, regarding Specebook!LOL!

    Because tons of people, definitely get lost in it.

    And since we definitely struggle with this re-occurring issue,
    from time to time.

    Thanks for providing some extremely practical tips!

  • amantripathi says:

    this artical so nice
    thanks for sharing

  • hello
    I would like to say this thing
    This article so nice and I get some good point in this article

    This For sharing this article

  • this is my first visit on this website and I really found some amazing information have shared some quality information on this place…looking forward to gain more knowledge from this website..thanks for sharing them..!!

  • John says:

    Hi Dan,

    This is an excellent and inspiring piece of content. It’s awesome, I must confess.

    What I have personally discovered aligns with your number three points on wny we procrastinate. Honestly, it is due to the fact that people actually need a break. Most people don’t realize this, but having a break by either resting, changing environment/tasks/assignments is one way to combat the addictive issue.
    Thanks for sharing, you are a great coach.

  • Hey Dan,

    Kudos for the much relatable article. This is my first time on your blog and I am very glad to comment on such an inspiring post.

    We must all admit the fact that we hardly take seconds to deviate from work, be it a phone call, a youtube video, a WhatsApp message, whatsoever. This leads to procrastination of work activities. The possible reasons and feasible methods to overcome the same are beautifully presented here.

    Enjoyed every word in this article.
    Thanks much for sharing.

    Have a great day.

    Sathish Arumugam

  • James says:

    Hi Dan,

    Your number two point on being ‘Overwhelmed’ is one primary reasons why people procrastinate.

    The solution you have provided is both helpful and dependable in terms of providing a solution to this menace.

    Thanks for sharing.

  • Jackson says:

    Great quality in your posts.
    Thanks for sharing

  • Jenny says:

    Thanks for the tips! They really helped me to overcome my procrastination. How can I contact you for questions?

  • Great…!! that’s great advice, I read and also saw your every post, nice artical very usefull your post Thank you so much for sharing this and the information provide.

  • Michelle Thompson says:

    Great Post! I share this with my employees. Most of them uses phone without reason which anyhow affect the work. Hope this article help them to understand & overcome procrastination.

    Thanks for sharing
    Online Reputation Consultants

  • Jatak says:

    This is a really awesome article, thanks for sharing this…

  • One of the methods I use for this is to be happy first. Second is to think that what I leave for another day may not make so much sense or have any impact on my life if I do not solve it at that moment. The more you postpone solving any problem, the worse it can become in our life.

  • SMACC says:

    Thanks for writing this very huge, informative and useful post.
    Now, I have started a software site as my main business.

    Jenny recently posted…Accounting software

  • Pip Gerard says:

    I would like to say this thing
    This article so nice and I get some good point in this education
    thank you

  • Leo Tat says:

    I find that I procrastinate on important task when they are unfamiliar with me. I end up fussing over the small details, and it ends up as analysis paralysis. For example, it took me 18 months from deciding to start a blog to actually taking action. Right now I know I should be creating a Pinterest account for my blog, but I’ve still not taken action because I am not familiar with Pinterest. Its been seven months since I decided that I should do and I’ve still not started. Analysis paralysis, I know my problem but its hard to get over it.

    • Hi Leo,

      Thanks for stopping by and commenting. Your story sounds all too familiar. I regularly fall into that same trap and I always seem to have a great excuse for it. You took a great first step in acknowledging the procrastination. We all know the next step…

      Good luck

  • Olivia Emily says:

    I have read your content and feel so much useful. I have shared your content with my friends. They are also interested in your content. Thank you so much.

  • Malik Aarif says:

    I Dan, this is my first time on your website. You article is really great and you mentioned very clearly all the Procrastinate issues. Thanks for sharing.

  • Shalu says:

    it is really awesome article
    your post is too good
    Thanks for sharing!!

  • Great tips! It really is important to ALWAYS be building your personal brand, no matter what.

  • Olivia Emily says:

    Thank you. I find that I procrastinate on important task when they are unfamiliar with me. I end up fussing over the small details, and it ends up as analysis paralysis. For example, it took me 18 months from deciding to start a blog to actually taking action.

  • One of the best post I came across. I am new to the field and I often try to learn and grab knowledge from here and there. But this is one of the best posts I came across.

  • D Maverick says:

    Great Post. I guess its time to implement this tomorrow. 😛
    It’s a great point about taking breaks which I find personally helpful.

  • Thank you for being patient and helping me improve

  • Oh Elsa says:

    You gave us lots of information, along with examples that are very helpful for me. Thank you so much for sharing

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