To procrastinate. Something that we have all done but that, sometimes, we do not even know how to associate with this term . Procrastinate is a term that comes from Latin, and that implies leaving the tasks that were had at that time for later, putting them off, delaying them as much as possible, taking a break that, sometimes, is more harmful than beneficial. While it is true that we all need a break after doing some activity, be it work or directly related to studies, procrastinating is not exactly resting . Yes, during that time you rest, but not because it has been planned, but because the person is unable to continue with the tasks for one reason or another.

The term procrastinate began to become known relatively recently, and in 2016 it even became one of the most searched terms in the RAE. For a person who works independently, procrastination can be a serious detriment, as well as for a student who does not know how to plan his study hours. Constantly delaying tasks makes you end up not doing them, and when your salary depends on it, or your qualifications, it can end up seriously affecting you. On the other hand, a break from time to time never hurts anyone . It is right here when the debate opens: is procrastination something negative, or a break that we deserve?

Procrastination has its good points

Procrastination has been shown to be positive for the individual . Putting aside all your tasks for a moment and dedicating yourself to something that has nothing to do with work or study can make it easier for you to resume everything with much more enthusiasm after that break. When we also talk about tasks that directly involve creativity, clearing up and taking a look at Pinterest (for example) can make that work end up having more quality in the long term.

Procrastination is not a planned rest, yes, but not everything in human beings can always be planned. Sometimes there are certain circumstances that allow us to work eight hours straight, and other times we need to disconnect every hour or two to be able to concentrate properly; It depends a lot on what context we are in, if we have rested enough or even if the task attracts us more or less. The problem with procrastinating is letting this break drag on without any meaning whatsoever, and we end up wasting absolutely all the time we had.

Sometimes procrastination is more due to a lack of organization, and it is because we insist on managing our time , when what we should manage is our energy. As we have explained, not every day you have the same desire to get out of bed and, therefore, not every day you can study the same thing. We must learn to manage our energy, and forget about the hours that the days have.

The problem is when the rest is lengthened without more

The downside of procrastinating is letting time go by without doing anything; not five or ten minutes, if not absolutely all the time that you had planned to dedicate to an activity. Not because of the loss of productivity itself, but because of what it may indicate; It can mean that the person has some type of anxiety, or that there is something that does not allow him to carry out that work on a psychological level.

Procrastination can be taken as a kind of well-deserved rest, as long as the person is aware that they should not take longer than necessary . That little time, of two or five minutes, should be an impulse to continue what was being done with even more force. Although procrastination has not yet been talked about as a serious problem, or that it affects people’s mental stability, there are indications that putting off work for too long can be a sign that something is going wrong . With which, it is best to avoid it by learning to manage energy in the best appropriate way. 

Elle Mcdonald

I am Elle Mcdonald Specializations in Psychology . Graduated in psychology from the University of Tennessee in 2000. Diploma of Advanced Studies in the Department of Personality, Evaluation and psychological treatments with excellent results.

First Level of Master in Clinical Psychology at the Center for Behavioral Therapists (recognized with a scientific-professional nature by the College of Psychologists)

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