Procrastination is defined as, "to defer action, delay, to procrastinate until an opportunity is lost". One study defined it as “postponing the completion of a task to the point of feeling uncomfortable about one’s delay.” Naturally, Satan and the world system want us to waste our precious time and pass into eternity having accomplished nothing of eternal value. Thus, anything that causes us to waste our time is a spiritual issue. Thoreau captured this truth when he wrote: “As if you could kill time without injuring eternity".How many of us would drop twenty dollar bills out of our car window as we drive down the highway or smash Rolex watches with a hammer as a means of relaxation? Yet, many of us consistently waste the most valuable resource available to us—our time. Benjamin Franklin put it this way: “Dost thou love life? Then do not squander time; for that’s the stuff life is made of.”{1} From a biblical perspective, Paul admonishes us: “Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil” (Eph. 5:15-16)

Examples Of Procrastination In The Bible:

1.The children of Israel delayed in moving to the promised land: So Joshua said to the Israelites: "How long will you wait before you begin to take possession of the land that the LORD, the God of your fathers, has given you? (Joshua 18: 3 NIV)
2.Marcus Antonius Felix, governor of Judea in 52 AD, delayed his salvation when Paul witnessed to him: "And as he was discussing righteousness, self-control and the judgment to come, Felix became frightened and said, “Go away for the present, and when I find time, I will summon you.” Acts 24:25
3.Songs Of Solomon 5:2-6..In that parable the Man delayed in opening the door for his beloved,when he finally opened,the bride has disappeared.

Five Types Of Procrastinators

The Thrill-Seeker: If you’re a thrill-seeker, then you procrastinate because you actually get a rush from completing things last minute. You feel that you thrive under pressure and you love the adrenaline you get from handing in work in the last possible minute. However such people never enter into their full potential because they spend so little time on their projects?
The Avoider:  The Avoider runs away from the discomfort of going through with a task that either is unpleasant or has high stakes. Avoiders are almost always too focused on what others might think. They run away from fear of failure or sometimes even fear of success.
The Indecisive Procrastinator: The Indecisive Procrastinator simply can’t make a decision. Usually, this is a result of the fear they will be blamed for a negative outcome. This type of procrastinator runs away from responsibility. After all, if they’re not making a decision, the result won’t be their fault.
The Perfectionist: Perfectionists set such high standards for themselves that they become overwhelmed. This type of procrastinator might even get started on work, which the other kinds of procrastinators usually have a hard time doing, but they fail to finish when they can’t meet the unrealistic expectations they set for themselves. Because they can’t do something perfectly, then nothing gets done at all. Cue cycle of anxiety and shame.
The Busy Procrastinator :Busy procrastinators are just too busy to actually get down to the bottom of their to-do list. Everything seems equally important and they can’t decide what to do first. Choosing only one task would mean that the others won’t get done.

Reasons Why People Procrastinate:

Procrastination is the mother of all limitations, the arch enemy of our dreams and the most common complaint from potential stars. Most people have big, bold and beautiful dreams, some people even know exactly what they need to do in order to achieve them, but for some, seemingly unknown, reason most people find themselves stuck with an inability to translate intention into action.
The major reasons for procrastination can be deduced from the types of procrastinators that we have. Yet we still need to isolate those reasons for sake of clarity.
1. Indecision: "A double minded man is unstable in all he does."  (James 1:8 LB)  When you don’t make up your mind on time,you automatically postpones action. The groom in the SOS 5;did not decide on time to open the door.
2.Perfectionism:It's hard to get anything done if it needs to be perfect, because if you're constantly criticizing the work there is always more work to be done. But the real problem comes in when you don't even want to do the work because making it perfect seems too daunting: This is how perfectionism can lead to procrastination.
3.Fear: Whenever we’re afraid of something, we tend to put it off. It could be the fear of failure or even the fear of success. What if I fail or worse yet, what if I achieve it, how do I top that? Fear can keep you from making that tough phone call, scheduling that counseling appointment, sharing your faith, volunteering your talents or pursuing your dream. King Agrippa was afraid of the unknown, that was why he procrastinated his salvation.
4.Coziness: When you are too relaxed and comfortable...sensing no need to achieve more, procrastination becomes very easy.
5.Laziness:When you lack energy or sleep excessively,the next obvious thing is to shift what want to do to another time.
6.Confusion:Sometimes the task just looms in front of you as a big block, like a building with no doors.  You walk around its perimeter and you don’t immediately see a way in.  How do you get in?  Where do you begin?  You can’t figure it out, so you set the task aside because you are confused.
7.Anger or Resentment: A very different cause of procrastination  is resentment. This person says, “I know I should be starting this task, but my spouse has been bugging me about it and I am going to show them that I am in control of my own time.”
8.Distraction:Distractions are every where.Phone calls,TV programs,Internet etc   and even low priority task can constitute themselves into distraction and waste your time...forcing you to procrastinate.
9.Low Action Identity.   Some personality have the tendency to always be slow to act. This means that despite their often highly specific intentions, they consistently defer the actualization of their intentions by procrastinating.
10. Helplessness in the face of complexity: We look at a task at hand and feel intensely un-resourceful.  It may remind us of something we had to do when we were younger, before we had the skills to conquer it (even though that’s no longer the case). Or it may actually be a daunting task at our current skill level.  Either way, the task seems far too complex, so we try to avoid it.
11.Fatigue/Stress :When you are easily tired...you automatically put yourself in a fix.Things become stagnant and procastination comes automatically.
12.Skill Deficits:Skill deficits are one of the most basic reasons for procrastination. If you lack the skills to complete certain tasks, it is only natural to avoid doing them. For example, you may be a slow reader. If you have several lengthy articles to read before you can write a paper, you may postpone the reading because it is difficult. You may even have trouble admitting your poor reading skills because you do not want to be seen as seem "dumb." Thus procrastinating may seem better than facing your need to improve your reading skills.
13. Reactive Depression: Reactive depression occurs when you have experienced a trauma in your life which has broken the normal hormonal functioning cycle that motivates you in your day-to-day life. The body has become overloaded with stress through an event, which may have been physical injury or psychological shock, causing the adrenal glands to overload then slow down. You feel like you do not have much energy or cannot be bothered do to do anything. You procrastinate about decisions or being involved with tasks.
14.Lack Of Structure: Structure (with respect to what we are talking about) simply means a pre-defined arrangement or system of getting things done. When this is lacking any complex task will never get done easily.
15.Overwhelming Task: Being overwhelmed can stifle us. When there’s just too much to do, we can freeze. There are so many urgent things to do, that it seems impossible to handle. So instead of getting on with it, against what would seem obvious, we go off on a tangent and do something entirely different instead.
16.Inability to prioritize: . Those who cannot view the tasks at hand and place them into different categories based on their level of importance sometimes have difficulty getting anything done because they are constantly switching from one task to another or trying to decide what to do next.

Dangers Of Procrastination

1.Loss Of Time: When you procrastinate, you lose precious time. Time lost can never be recovered. It is lost forever.Time is life: When people kill time they are not committing murder they are committing suicide. Every man is like a bottle of pharmaceutical, he has an expiry date. A date after which his usefulness is cancelled. Your major aim should be to achieve before you expire. Therefore, let everyday of your life count concerning your purpose for life. Williams James said the value of life is not computed by its duration but by its donation.
2.Loss Of Opportunities: The word opportunity has been defined as an occasion or situation which makes it possible to do something that you want to do or have to do.When you procrastinate you may lose the window of opportunity that is opened in your direction.
3.Decreasing Self Esteem:This is one of the vicious circles you might find yourself in. We tend to procrastinate sometimes because of a low self-esteem, but procrastinating doesn’t only reinforce this, it makes it even lower.
Having low self-esteem destroys lives in many ways. When we have low self-esteem we hold ourselves back, we feel less than we should and it leads to self-sabotaging acts. Procrastination eats away at your confidence, slowly but surely.
4.Inability To Reach Set Goals:With procastination,set goals becomes a tall gream.Not because of lack of ability but because of failure to act when necessary.
5.Failure In Life And Carrier: Many people didn't realize that when we continuously put things off, it will develop into a bad habit.  There are good and bad habits.  When things turn into a habit, we will do them without even thinking about it. Procrastination is a bad habit and if we do not stop the bad habits, it will have an impact on our life.  The longer you procrastinate in doing things that ensure your success, the closer it will lead you to the path of failure in carrier and destiny with certainty.

HOW TO OVERCOME PROCRASTINATION

1.    Get clear about what you want in life. Think well and write down all your goals in some or all of these categories: career, education, relationships, financial, physical, mindset, creative, spiritual, public service, travel, leisure, and other. When you do this your life is automatically given a specific direction and procrastination becomes more dangerous and inconvenient.
2.    Believe in yourself and in your ability to accomplish anything you want. If you’ve lost hope, know that you can turn things around. Release the fear of failure. Failure is just a learning experience. Slow and steady wins the race. A little bit done every day adds up to a lot over a year. If you have to, just fake your belief until it becomes real. Remember, you can do it!
3.    To-Do List: These are prioritized lists of all the tasks that you need to carry out. They list everything that you have to do, with the most important tasks at the top of the list, and the least important tasks at the bottom.
By keeping such a list, you make sure that your tasks are written down all in one place so you don't forget anything important. And by prioritizing tasks, you plan the order in which you'll do them, so that you can tell what needs your immediate attention, and what you can leave until later.
To-Do Lists are essential if you're going to beat work overload .and overcome procrastination. With this list you'll focus your time and energy on high value activities, which will mean that you're more productive.
4.    Have some quiet time every day And plan the Day In Advance. We are constantly plugged in to our digital world. We constantly have music or sound on. It can be a overwhelming and stressful causing us to tune out of work and life. Give yourself at least 30 minutes of quiet everyday.Use the time to pray,plan and to refocus on the tasks at hand and your ultimate purpose in life.
5.    Eliminate Distractions: It's hard to get any real work done when you keep turning your attention to what's on television or you keep checking your friends Facebook status updates. Assign yourself a period of time during which you turn off all distractions – such as music, television, and social networking sites – and use that time to focus all of your attention on the task at hand.
6.    Break your work into little steps. Part of the reason why we procrastinate is because subconsciously, we find the work too overwhelming for us. Break it down into little parts, then focus on one part at the time. If you still procrastinate on the task after breaking it down, then break it down even further. Soon, your task will be so simple that you will be thinking “gee, this is so simple that I might as well just do it now!”
7.    Identify your most productive times. If you’re more focused in the morning, set aside this time for your biggest, most complicated projects. Putting off important work until the times when you’re less productive is likely to lead to procrastination.
8.    Reward yourself at project milestones. When facing a large task, break the overall project down into several smaller milestones and set up rewards for achieving each new deadline. Make sure the rewards are things you’ll be excited to receive (for example, a new book or a nice dinner out) in order to truly give procrastination the boot.
9.    Take a visualization break. If you find yourself struggling to take action in the face of overwhelming procrastination, take a few minutes to visualize the end result you’re trying to achieve. If you’re trying to lose weight, picture your newly-fit self skipping down the beach in a bikini. If it’s a business project you’re struggling with, visualize the extra money being deposited into your bank account or your boss congratulating you on a job well done. Make your visualizations as realistic as possible and you’ll soon want to experience this same success in real life!
10.    Work on a different project: One sneaky way to get around your procrastination is to start work on another, more appealing project. Then, while you’re hard at work, switch gears and get back to the task you’re procrastinating on. You’ll find it’s a lot easier to make the transition when you’re already working than when you’re wasting around on the couch.
11.     Seek order.“The difference between an amateur and a professional is in their habits. An amateur has amateur habits. A professional has professional habits. We can never free ourselves from habit. But we can replace bad habits with good ones. We can trade in the habits of the amateur and the addict for the practice of the professional and the committed artist or entrepreneur.”
Do you have a schedule that you follow? Do you have a routine in place? The best way to defeat habits of procrastination and the inability to start anything is to streamline everything. Take the guesswork out. Know what it is that needs to be done and dive into it. Don’t think.
12.    Change Your Environment: Gather only what you need to work on the task, take yourself out of your normal work environment and go to a conference room, another office, the library, a co-working space, a friend’s house — anywhere where you will not be distracted by your normal routine and people that you know.
13.    Take Mini-Breaks.When you begin to lose focus, take a 5-15 minute break away from your work area. Do something totally unrelated to work (e.g., take a quick walk, create a cute label, eat some fruit, listen to music, stretch).
14.    Embrace Imperfection. One of the reasons we procrastinate is to avoid having to make tough decisions and deal with a difficult task. If you’re trying to write the perfect paper, coming up with the perfect thesis can be so intimidating that you don’t even want to get started. Instead of always aiming for perfection, start intimidating projects by just getting started.
15.    Intensive Prayers: Acknowledge that God has given us all of the time we need to accomplish everything He wants us to accomplish. Since that is probably far more than we normally accomplish, we need to invite God to lead our time management initiative. We need to pray for a clear understanding of God’s priorities and perspective. If we are dealing with laziness, we should ask for self-control. If we are dealing with emotions such as resentment or fear, we need to ask God to take our thoughts captive in obedience to Christ. If we are struggling with anxiety, we need His peace that passes understanding. If we are struggling with perfectionism, we need to acknowledge that our total significance is found in Christ, not in our performance. Do not try to bypass this step. Time is a key battleground in the spiritual war. If we run onto the battlefield in our own power and wisdom, we will soon find ourselves hopelessly behind.
16.    Put pressure on yourself. One of the best ways to overcome procrastination is by working as if you had only one day to get all your most important jobs done before you go on vacation.
17.    Maximize your personal powers by resting: When you are fully rested you can get three times as much done as when you are tired. Some once said that you will do well by dividing your day into three. One third to work, one third to play and one third to rest.
18.    Do the most difficult task first. We only have a limited supply of willpower. Once it’s been used up for the day, chances of us tackling hard tasks are pretty slim. Dive into your hardest task when your energy level is at its highest. This will ensure the best results. When we push the hard tasks to the end of the day, it takes a toll on our energy all day long. In the end, stressing for hours over the task we’re procrastinating negatively affects all the other tasks on our list. So next time you’re scheduling the items on your list, make sure to start out with worst one. It may not necessarily be the largest, but it should be the one you’re dreading the most. By accomplishing it so early in the day, you will feel energized and productive. You’ll know the rest of the day is all downhill and cruise through the list with remarkable speed.
19.    Limit how much time you spend on something: One of the best tactics recommended is to limit how much time you spend on something. Limiting how much time you spend on a task makes the task more fun, more structured, and less frustrating and difficult because you’ll always be able to see an end in sight. There are some huge productivity benefits to the idea as well. When you limit how much time you spend on something instead of throwing more time at the problem, you force yourself to exert more energy over less time to get it done, which will make you a lot more productive.
20.    Set a mid-day alarm. There’s nothing more guilt-inducing than ending a day and realizing you haven’t accomplished a single task. We can avoid this rut by setting an alarm on our phone to ring everyday around 1 p.m. When the ringer goes off, assess how many things on your list have been attended to.
Re-plan your schedule for the remainder of the afternoon and shift it around to take care of the most important item first. If necessary, you can indulge in a second cup of coffee to jumpstart your “second morning.” By doing this, you will avoid going to bed at night mulling over all the things you didn’t get done.











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