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Many times, procrastination is the result of perfectionism. This can come about in a couple of different ways. Either you push it off because you know you can’t get it done precisely the way you want, or you end up redoing the assignment too many times until it’s late because you can’t get it perfect. Perfectionism and fear of failure are correlated as many prevent success by not starting something.
One example is waiting for everything in your life to be perfect before you start your own business. Most successful entrepreneurs understand that this is not reality. In fact, every day businesses go through unexpected challenges due to human error or due to unavoidable situations.
In other words, a business isn’t perfect and takes risks to be successful. If you strive always to be perfect, you will never learn to take the right risks and leap for the opportunities that are right for you.
The Fear of Failure and Success
New responsibilities or requirements that may be rewarded after the assignment is finished can be too much to process and emotionally handle. The same can be true in reverse and cause you to stall or prevent doing the task. You fear the work because it’s new, and you don’t want to be wrong or fail. Not doing it at it all, or using last-minute motivation to get it done, seems better than giving it your most significant try and still failing.
Fear of Criticism
No one likes being judged, especially within their own relationships and at work. It can lead to poor judgment of one’s abilities and self-confidence that can further degrade your work and ability to perform. Unfortunately, not only does this lead to late or missing assignments but also to poor-quality work, due to the emotions of fear taking over your ability to perform at your best.
For some, the rush of getting work done last minute and the possible drama it can cause is a fun and exciting feeling. They do it for the dopamine rush to make their days seem more exciting or measurable. It is their way to challenge and add pressure on themselves to motivate or bring more excitement to otherwise dull work.
False Reality of the Future
In simple terms, you decide that whatever you need to do is more of a problem for your future self to worry about than today. You also tell yourself that you will know how to do it better later or have more time than you really do. Just like saying, “I will start my diet tomorrow.” A false sense of reality can easily set you behind. Just because it’s the future doesn’t mean things will automatically improve or be less of a problem later on.
Unclear Goals, Desires, and Rewards
You simply don’t care enough about the work or the reward to do it, so it’s not desirable enough and it seems far-fetched or out of reach. When you don’t know what you want, you can’t make reliable decisions, ultimately delaying what you need to get started or finish.
Unpleasant or Humiliating Work
The work required to get the job finished is unenjoyable or physically makes you ill, anxious, or gives other discomforts. It takes a lot of determination, grit, and motivation to work on something you don’t like doing. Not liking the activities involved to finish the work will persuade anyone to neglect it.
Anxiety and Depression
If a task makes you sad or anxious, it’s easily avoidable. Maybe you know you need to pay a bill but are too afraid to see how much the late payment will be, or it reminds you of a traumatizing time in life that makes it hard to revisit.
Too Much to Do: Overwhelm
A widespread factor is that there is simply too much to do in the time you have to finish a job. When you stack too many tasks together, it can feel overwhelming and confusing to find a place to start. Instead of focusing or finding a way to finish the work, you concentrate on the amount and therefore run out of needed time.
Low Self-Esteem and Efficacy
You simply don’t believe in your ability to get the work done or that you are the best for the task. If you think you will fail it anyway, what is the point of getting started early?