The 4 Types of Procrastination and How to Overcome Them

The 4 Types of Procrastination and How to Overcome Them

Procrastination is a common problem that most people have to contend with every day.

In layman’s terms, procrastination is the delay of taking action on a certain task or activity.

Have you ever had a task in the office that you knew would take some time, but instead of starting on it immediately you opted to wait?

You would then find yourself wasting time on the internet, just checking on Facebook and watching random video clips on YouTube. And after wasting all that time you would feel guilty that you wasted it, and worry that you won’t have enough time to finish the task.

This is a simplistic look at procrastination.

But in order to get to the root of the problem, it is best to look at procrastination behaviors and find out how to overcome procrastination.

There are various types of procrastination, but the four major types are anxious, fun, worrier and perfectionist procrastination.

1. Anxious procrastination

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Image Source: Key & Peele

This type of procrastination is based on fear.

A fear of failure or doing something wrong.

An example would be stalling your work on a certain project at work because you are afraid of the outcome. Although you already have all the needed information and resources, you still don’t want to get started and blame your inactivity on the lack of information.

This type of procrastination is fed by unrealistic expectations that makes you experience stress and anxiety over the probabilities on how the project would turn out.

The characteristics of the people suffering from this kind of procrastination is the inability to manage time wisely, overstressing at work and overworking.

How to overcome it:

The main factor in this type of procrastination is that you fear to move forward because of a fear of failure. Thus the best way to overcome this type of procrastination is to forge on ahead with the activity.

Only by doing this will you be able to see that there really is nothing to get scared about and avoid procrastination.

2. Fun procrastination

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Image Source: Jean-Paul Pelissier

This type of procrastination usually occurs when you are supposed to get started on a task, but you find it boring and do something that entertains you instead.

An example would be playing video games or reading comic books instead of studying for a test.

This type of procrastination usually stems from a low attention span.

How to overcome it:

Fun procrastination may be one of the most difficult forms of procrastination to shake off. This is because having fun is very tempting especially if it is compared to something boring and repetitive.

The best thing for this is to do something constructive with your procrastination. Though you may find the task boring, you could still do something that will help you grow as a person.

Take up a hobby or learn another language. That way you will not waste your time and have something to show for your efforts.

3. Plenty of time procrastination

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This type of procrastination stems from being complacent about time.

One example would be the way an employee stalls doing work on a project and in the end is faced with reality that there is no more time left to finish the project. This can also be used for projects that have no deadlines, such as painting the house or even just throwing out the garbage.

How to overcome it:

Plenty of time procrastination can be overcome if you set yourself your own earlier deadline.

By setting your own earlier deadline you would forget about the original deadline and start working on the project.

Try telling your family and friends about your deadlines, this way you will be motivated to finish within the deadline.

4. Perfectionist procrastination

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This type of procrastination stems from the need to do everything perfectly.

One example would be an employee’s inability to finish the project at hand because he or she makes various corrections on the most minute of details.

Even worse this fear of failure can lead some people to restart on a project or not even get started at all.

How to overcome it:

This type of procrastination can be overcome by looking back at past works.

There you will see that you also committed mistakes and the job was still done well.

It is also important that you accept the fact that doing a truly perfect job is unrealistic and it is better to work towards excellence rather than perfection.

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