18 October 2022
Have you ever put off an important task until the very last minute without realizing why you were doing so?
Have you been having trouble getting much done, particularly when working from home?
Do you easily succumb to the temptation to be distracted rather than complete a task?
I’ve been there, and sometimes still do… As have countless other women genetically predisposed to procrastination, according to a 2014 study. Apparently, estrogen from the female sex appears to play a role in the interdependence of gender, specifically the female gender, and procrastination.
Furthermore, working women and mothers who tend to wear many hats at work and at home procrastinate due to stress. This is becoming more common as stress has been linked to procrastination.
An additional study on the relationship between motivation, fear, and procrastination among working women discovered that decreases in motivation result in increased fear of failure and procrastination among working women.
Other explanations for procrastination include a lack of self-compassion, difficulties with negative moods, or avoiding the task at hand, to name a few. For women, it may also be due to self-doubt and the psychological pull to underachieve to be more socially accepted. Procrastination is not necessarily a reflection of poor time management, for which it is frequently blamed.
So, now that we know that procrastination can stem from various causes and that it is not a sign of laziness, what can we do about it, particularly as overburdened, often over-taxed working women?
Work on boosting your self-esteem:
Despite being some of the most competent and extraordinarily gifted women I know, most working women who struggle with procrastination also battle with self-doubt. Building your confidence will give you the courage to take on seemingly impossible or intimidating tasks.
Start with the complex tasks:
When confronted with the difficult and the simple, begin with the difficult. Getting a difficult task completed early on will give you the confidence and stamina to keep ploughing through your to-do list.
Obtain some accountability:
Nothing beats being held accountable to a few trusted individuals… Could you share your goals with your team or well-chosen friends or colleagues who can hold you accountable and keep you on track to meet your deadlines or complete planned milestones?
Multitasking is the polar opposite of productivity and a powerful ally of procrastination. The more you try to do it at once, the more overwhelmed you may become.
Allow for flaws:
Perfectionist beware! As a recovering perfectionist, I understand the agony of wanting to complete a task perfectly. However, the more you strive for perfection, the longer you may want to put off submitting or finishing it for fear of missing something. So let it go; it doesn’t have to be perfect; it simply has to be completed!
Make use of the power of reward:
Last but not least, as a reward for beating your own procrastination, give yourself something to look forward to. Don’t forget to celebrate, whether it’s with a special treat, some relaxation time, or simply acknowledging that you made it!
As a working woman, how do you overcome procrastination?
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Til next time,