Why do people procrastinate about what they have to decide to do? What is it that puts them off committing to a course of action?
In a word... Fear.
They’re scared of the outcome. It could be the fear of failure or even the fear of success. It could be the fear of commitment or it could be that they’re worried about wasting time.
Whatever the causes of procrastination, it’s something we all do at times because we all imagine what could happen.
Every time you procrastinate on the decisions facing you, it takes up your valuable time, thought and energy
Putting decisive action off costs time and energy because recurring thoughts go round in your mind. Again and again, you replay ‘what if?’ without moving on with much.
Jumping on this mental merry-go-round means your time and attention can’t be given to all the other roles, goals and responsibilities that you have in your life.
Whether you’re a monochronic or polychronic personality, you can only entertain one thought at a time. If it’s repeatedly the same thought and it’s not followed up by action, you’re procrastinating.
Once we know why people procrastinate, the next step is to work out how to overcome it. It’s very easy to be flippant and say ‘Just do it’. But that doesn’t deal with the root cause of the challenge of overcoming procrastination on decisions.
So what’s the solution?
There’s no hard and fast rule here except to say that not making a decision is a decision.
With that in mind, take some time to learn and apply some effective types of decision making techniques to help you decide what to do.
Think of a decision or tasks you’re putting off. Does it have to be done to the point of completion in one go?
Maybe the phrase should be, ‘Just start it’...