You May Also Like

miranda kerr stress anxiety

Miranda Kerr’s secrets for dealing with stress and anxiety

Well+Good - These 6 things will *actually* make you happy, according to science

These 6 things will *actually* make you happy, according to science

Mycoplasma genitalium infection is on the rise

This antibiotic-resisting, infertility-causing STI is on the rise—and could be the next superbug

How to have awkward conversations

This is *exactly* what to say during the most awkward conversations

Oranges help macular degeneration prevention

Logging some serious screen time? Eat *this* fruit to keep your vision game strong

What every woman should understand about burnout

The one word you’re saying that could actually be causing anxiety

The secret to using procrastination to your advantage


Thumbnail for The secret to using procrastination to your advantage
Pin It
Photo: Pexels/KaboomPics

Regardless of how many pressing tasks we may have on our to-do list, we can (and do) always find time to lurk on social media (or whatever breed of distraction you prefer)—even if we have a zillion more important things we should be doing.

The good news? Procrastination can actually be good for you. According to an article in The Atlantic, there’s such a thing as productive procrastinating (get excited).

The story points out that Charles Duhigg, author of The Power of Habit, classifies procrastination as a habit rather than a moral failing (which, if you’re like me, is what you call it as you freak out over a last-minute assignment you have to do yet find yourself scrolling through Instagram).

Duhigg says procrastination involves a cue, a routine, and a reward. It goes something like this: An overflowing inbox (the cue) might lead you to think about checking social media (the routine)—and the idea of a refreshing cognitive break by checking your news feed seems like a reward. But the “cognitive break” often isn’t all that refreshing—instead, it just wastes a lot of time. (So true.)

The key to taking control of your procrastination is to notice “the routine”—whatever automatic habit is your go-to—and observe it while it’s happening. If you start to notice when you whip out your phone or start typing facebook.com into your browser, you have a better chance of deciding to do something useful instead.

Since that’s easier said than done, you can procrastinate better by setting what Duhigg calls an “implementation intention,” where you write a list of other things you need to do that have nothing to do with the task at hand—for example, Marie Kondo-ing your apartment or calling your cable company. When you start getting the take-a-break itch, do things on that list. (And step away from the Snapchat…)

If you get used to this, you could become a “structured procrastinator”: someone who procrastinates by doing actual work rather than Googling your crush, browsing Facebook, or keeping up with the Kardashians. Talk about #goals.

Another productivity hack to consider? Bullet journaling (which actually makes your brain feel better). Or perhaps you should try the “one-hour workday” approach to take your career to the next level.

Loading More Posts...

You May Also Like

What you should know about Menopause

5 things all women need to know about menopause—even if you think it’s decades away

What women want in a relationship

Exactly how to get what you want out of your relationship

How to live your best summer life, according to your zodiac sign

How to live your best summer life, according to your zodiac sign

What every woman should understand about burnout

The one word you’re saying that could actually be causing anxiety

Horoscope of the day sexy

This week the stars are aligning to serve you a super-sexy TGIF

Oranges help macular degeneration prevention

Logging some serious screen time? Eat *this* fruit to keep your vision game strong