How Can I escape from procrastinating?

I am seeing the life is fine without me. So does my feelings and goal really matter? Why struggle when I can make myself feel good? So Mr or Ms, what do you think?
Asked by Aung
Answered
12/05/2021

Hello Aung and thank you for reaching out regarding your concerns for procrastination and low mood. In terms of your avoidance of wanting to complete necessary tasks, it sounds like that is stemming from anxiety. Often times when we avoid certain people, places, things, or tasks, it is because we are anxious about them and it gives us temporary relief from the anxiety-provoking situation when we avoid it. However, when it involves necessary tasks, those tasks are not going to go away and it would be better to deal with the issue head-on instead of avoiding it. Often times once that task is completed, you will notice a sense of accomplishment and motivation will follow.

In Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, we learn that we have automatic thoughts and core beliefs related to situations and events that happen in our lives. Once the event occurs, we have an automatic thought about it. That thought then influences our emotional state and then that emotional state influences our behaviors and this can have a circular effect. Having said this, it is important to understand if and when we are having unhealthy thoughts (also known as Cognitive Distortions) because these thoughts directly impact our emotional well-being and our behaviors. Therefore, if you are having unwanted emotions and behaviors (anxiety and procrastination in your case as well as low mood), it is important to go to the root of the problem and take a look at your thoughts to determine if they are healthy or not? Once you identify the root thoughts, begin to challenge them. Is there any evidence that supports the thought? Is there any that refutes the thought? Put the thought on trial to determine its validity. Look at the thought from different angles, for example, "what would my friend say about this?" or "Will this thought matter next week or even a year from now?" Sometimes our thoughts happen so quickly that we do not even realize when we are having unhealthy thoughts, therefore, it is important to be mindful about your thoughts as they come in, especially when you begin to notice a shift in your mood, from being okay to quickly turning anxious and avoidant. In addition to what I have mentioned above concerning challenging anxious thoughts, there are a number of ways to cope with anxiousness. Deep breathing, progressive muscle relaxation and guided imagery are all helpful ways to calm your mind and your body. Exercise is also a great way to release anxious energy. I hope this answers you question! Take care!

(MSW, LCSW, LCAS)