For a long time, I struggled with procrastination. Despite my organization and awareness of my priorities, I still felt a deep need to procrastinate. Hours and days passed by, and when people asked me about my progress, I made excuses and sometimes even became irritable. I wasn’t frustrated with them for pointing out my lack of commitment but rather disappointed in myself.
Upon deeper reflection, I realized that I was disappointed not just because I procrastinated but because I didn’t feel like the person I wanted to be. The fear of not being that person was what caused me to procrastinate in the first place. I wanted to be perfect, and whenever something mattered, I wanted to do it outstandingly. Deep down, I was worried about my ability to do it and afraid of facing my limits and flaws.
It wasn’t until I addressed my anxiety and fear that I could manage my procrastination better. I stopped the vicious cycle of “insecurity-procrastination-guilt-bad conscience.” I started coming back to my body and feeling my emotions instead of distracting myself with short-term relief, such as scrolling social media, watching TV series, and eating.
Here are some practical suggestions to help you manage your procrastination:
First, acknowledge why you’re avoiding the task. Are you scared of failure, afraid of facing your flaws, or maybe stressed by changes? Journaling about your fears can be a great way to manage them. By acknowledging your feelings, you can begin to address them instead of trying to distract yourself from them. Taking time to write about your feelings can help you be more present and capable of managing them.
Second, forgive yourself for procrastinating. Research shows that people prone to procrastination are often less compassionate towards themselves and have high expectations. By forgiving yourself, you can reduce guilt and open the door to self-acceptance and self-love. Negative feelings towards ourselves often trigger procrastination, so forgiveness is a crucial step toward your goals.
Third, just get started. Sometimes, a task can be overwhelming, and managing stress and anxiety becomes hard. Breaking down the task into smaller, achievable steps can help you manage your anxiety. Completing even a small action can help you make progress and feel better about the task. Shifting from resistance to action can help you feel more relaxed and capable of achieving what you want.
Here are some practical tips to bring yourself back to the present moment and connect with your body:
Put your hands in the water: Take a break and play with water. While washing your hands, feel the temperature on your fingertips, palms, and backs of your hands. Switch from warm to cold water and focus on how it feels. Take a few deep breaths and let the water help release the tension and stress from your body.
Focus on an object near you: Pick up an object nearby and focus on its texture, color, and temperature. Observe it as if you’re seeing it for the first time and explore it with curiosity, like a child. This can help you ground yourself in the present moment.
Feel your breath: Bring your attention to your breath and take a few deep breaths. Focus on the sensation of air entering and leaving your body. Don’t force yourself to slow your breathing. Simply allow yourself to relax and breathe naturally.
Drink a glass of water: Take small sips and focus on the texture and temperature. Allow yourself to fully experience the sensation of drinking and taking a break.
Feel your feet: Take a moment to feel the soles of your feet. If you’re wearing shoes, notice how they feel on your feet. Feel your feet leaning on the ground and imagine roots growing from them into Mother Earth. Imagine the Earth’s energy flowing into your body, nourishing and grounding you. This can help you feel more connected to your body and safe.
Be kind to yourself, embrace your feelings, and take one step at a time. Celebrate small successes and see setbacks as part of the learning process. You can do it!