Why do people procrastinate on tasks?

Top reasons for delaying work includes low self esteem

Suad Mohamed, In-Depth Editor

Anyone who says that they have not procrastinated a little before is not being truthful.
Everyone has pushed at least a few assignments back a bit.
Maybe it is because you wanted to hang out with your friends, or maybe it is because you just really hate the class.
Doing a few things late is normal. Procrastination is not.
Procrastination is when people push multiple large tasks until the last minute.
It is a chronic problem that affects all parts of the affected person’s life.
Many students tend to procrastinate on completing homework and studying for exams.
This is a big problem, as it can lead to poor grades and high levels of stress.
While it may be possible to get away with procrastination in middle and high school, it can lead to big issues in college.
A report published by the Centers for Disease Control noted that 90% of college students procrastinate.
Of this percentage, 25% are chronic procrastinators.
The report also noted that there is a trend that suggests that these people do not end up graduating because of the insurmountable amount of pressure.
While some believe it is just lazy students who procrastinate, there are adults that deal with the issue in their day to day life.
Some adults wait until the last minute to do things like fill out forms and pay bills.
This can lead to massive issues such as job loss and debt due to unpaid late bills.
Nobody wants to work with or trust an adult who cannot manage their time.
Most people do not know what causes procrastination, and often chalk it up to bad character.
Often, procrastination is a sign of deeper issues.
The number one cause of procrastination is poor time management.
Most procrastinators were never picked up the ability to map out schedules, so they never get things done in a timely fashion.
Procrastination can be a sign of low self esteem.
Some people believe that they are bound to do terribly on an assignment or task because they do not understand it completely, so it is better to save time and just not do it.
Often times, these people have the knowledge, but the stress causes them to stop believing in themselves, which just sets them up for failure.
Another issue that can cause people to procrastinate is issues with paying attention and focusing on objectives.
Students who have poor attention spans and trouble focusing, often have the intention of getting work done, but their wandering mind inhibits them from fulfilling their aims.
Problems with focusing are only exacerbated by things like phones, video games, and social media.
It can be very hard to focus when phones and computers keep buzzing with notifications every second.
“A lot of the time, I will sit down to start my work, but I just can not,” senior Hemen Besufekad said. “I get distracted with my phone or thinking about other stuff, and I can not focus on what I am supposed to be doing.”
Some people even work to distract themselves.
These individuals will complete unnecessary tasks, such as doing an assignment due in weeks or offering their time to someone else.
This is done in the hopes of giving themselves a pass on doing the work that should be their first priority.
While there are many cons with procrastination, it can be a pro, too.
There are people who tend to do better on assignments when they procrastinate because the pressure encourages them to do better.
“Personally, my best work is done at the last minute,” junior Elizabeth Dula said. “The things that I procrastinate always have more quality, and I earn better grades on them.”
People who procrastinate tend to be extreme perfectionists.
They want to ensure that their work is in tip top shape before they turn it in.
Sometimes, this is a good character trait. It ensures that their work is always great.
These types of people tend to go through their work multiple times, so they notice more errors along the way.
At the same time, perfectionism can lead to trouble.
Since perfectionists seek to reach unrealistic goals, they are often met with disappointment when their work and grades do not meet their ultra high expectations.
Perfectionism can also lead to the belief that it is better to not do a task, rather than do poorly at it.
While procrastinating may seem like a good idea at times, it will just lead to more issues.
Chronic procrastinators report high levels of stress, anxiety and depression.
These are all terrible for both physical and social health.
They can lead to physical symptoms, such as coronary disease.
They also have the ability to lead to poor relationships with others
Other people, including employers and teachers, have a hard time trusting procrastinators.
Employers will not want to give procrastinators hard tasks that can move them up career-wise.
Teachers will expect poor work and effort. Both will not have sympathy for the person.
All the tasks that were pushed until the last minute will close in and drown the procrastinator in a wave of pressure and guilt.
The work will not be sufficient for a good grade, and most times, it will not be completed at all.
The CDC report also noted that 85% of procrastinators feel regret for not doing things in a timely fashion.
Once all this information is looked at, it is clear to see that while there are valid causes of procrastination, it has terrible side effects, so it is best to try to let the habit go.