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Procrastination is avoiding things, which need doing. It is doing other things when we should be on task and working.
These statements get us to postpone important tasks and duties. We all do this at some stage but it can get to a point where procrastination becomes a real problem in our lives.The more we procrastinate, the bigger the task in front of us becomes and the harder it is to take action.
Failure to act can produce many undesirable feelings:
Why we procrastinate?
Procrastinators are often accused of being lazy and disorganised. However, not getting on with your work is often an indicator of other factors at work, such as:
Procrastination is a bad habit and like other habits it can be broken. There are two main causes and these are "crooked thinking" and "learned behaviour" patterns.
Crooked thinking is thinking in a way that is neither productive nor helpful and prevents you from tackling the task. Crooked thinking is based on irrational ideas or beliefs which keep you from getting what you want or need.
Learned behaviour is acting in a way that got you what you wanted as a child, but as an adult is not appropriate or helpful to you, ie having a temper tantrum or running away from an issue.
What to do about it
First of all, understand and accept that procrastination is not helpful. It interferes with your academic and personal success and can have painful consequences.
Those old excuses you have been using to avoid starting work just won't hold up under close scrutiny. Challenge each one as it pops up.
Prepare your study environment. Have everything you need at your fingertips:- books, pens, paper, adequate lighting. Be neat. Minimise noise and distractions.
Take a stand. Commit yourself. Tell a friend, a partner, a supervisor or someone who matters, about your new work plan.
Talk to yourself with positive statements like
Don't catastrophise. Jumping to conclusions that you are no good at something will only create a wall of fear that will stop you cold.
Recognise that your negative predictions are not fact. Focus on the present and what positive steps you can take towards reaching your goals.
Get started by making a plan
Where to from here?
If you would like to make an appointment to see a counsellor to learn more about this topic please contact the counselling service on your campus. Distance students can contact any one of the campuses.
Please tell the receptionist if you need an urgent appointment.
Albany: Health and Counselling Centre Monday to Friday 8.30 am - 5.00 pm. Telephone (09) 213 6700.
Manawatu: Student Counselling Service, Turitea Campus, Monday to Friday 8.30 am - 5.00 pm (8.30 - 4.30 during semester breaks). Telephone (06) 350-5533.
Wellington: Student Counselling Service, The Student Services Trust @ Wellington, Monday to Friday 8.30 am - 4.30 pm. Telephone (04) 801-2542.
Page authorised by Regional Registrars
Last updated on Wednesday 11 January 2017