Everyone procrastinates sometimes, but 20 percent of people chronically avoid difficult tasks and deliberately look for distractions—which, unfortunately, are increasingly available. Procrastination in large part reflects our perennial struggle with self-control as well as our inability to accurately predict how we'll feel tomorrow, or the next day.

Procrastinators may say they perform better under pressure, but more often than not that's their way of justifying putting things off. The bright side? It's possible to overcome procrastination—with effort.

Recent Posts on Procrastination

Why Am I Always Late?

Why Am I Always Late? Chronic lateness may be about power. By Julie Jarett Marcuse, Ph.D.

The Curse of Apathy: Sources and Solutions

What causes the feeling of non-feeling?

Strength Versus Structure

By Timothy A Pychyl Ph.D. on April 26, 2016 Don't Delay
Strength is important. We may even say it’s essential, but it’s not sufficient. It’s structure and routine that will save us when the going gets tough.

Do You Know How to Be Motivated?

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on April 26, 2016 How To Do Life
A self-assessment inventory.

Ridding Happiness Contaminants 7: Procrastination

Procrastination is the culprit of many problems and frustrations. Learn the reasons why many of us procrastinate and elegant strategies to overcome it.

Tax Time Drama and Relief

Money is full of drama. But tax season is a collective drama—trauma, for some—where we are all simultaneously taking an accounting of money in our lives.

The Original Myth

Does procrastination improve creativity? A new take on an old idea.

Mindful Emotion Regulation

By Timothy A Pychyl Ph.D. on April 01, 2016 Don't Delay
Mindfulness-based therapies are very popular, and all have a common goal – adaptive emotion regulation. As such, they are a key route to reducing procrastination.

Shoot for Now, Ask Questions Later

Deadline gorillas. They chase us to get that assignment done or to fill in tax returns. Zap'em dead with hyperbolic discounting.

7 Questions to Ask Yourself About Your Day

By Alice Boyes Ph.D. on March 31, 2016 In Practice
Your productivity is more than just ticking things off your to-do list.

I Was Just Thinking In My Head

By Timothy A Pychyl Ph.D. on March 21, 2016 Don't Delay
“I was just thinking in my head.” Have you heard anyone say that? I have, quite often. Not limiting ourselves to our own heads can help reduce procrastination.

How Productive Are You, Really?

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on March 19, 2016 How To Do Life
A self-assessment inventory to help you decide if you want to be more or less productive at work and outside of work.

When Should the Chronically Ill See a Doctor? Here's a Guide

I hope these guidelines are helpful. If you’re in doubt as to whether what’s happening warrants a trip to the doctor, err on the side of caution and make that trip.

The Balloon

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on March 11, 2016 How To Do Life
A short-story story about a procrastinating, overweight midlifer

Is My Penis Small? Is My Vagina Large?

Internet search statistics show that we aren't who we think we are.

Read This Now: A Fun Look at Procrastination

Why not take a lighthearted look at procrastination: why we do it and how to deal with it? There are probably some helpful hints in here, but it's all said in fun.

Procrastination: I Can Get by With Help From My Friends

By Marcia Eckerd Ph.D. on February 29, 2016 People Skills
Do you have so much on your plate that you sometimes freeze and get nothing done? This blogger had to find a way back to work.

"I'm Young Yet"

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on February 24, 2016 How To Do Life
A transcript of part of a career counseling session

An Attempt to Help a Procrastinator

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on February 18, 2016 How To Do Life
A dialogue between a procrastinating client and me, his career coach.

Is Your Dedication Keeping You Stuck?

By Marcia Reynolds Psy.D. on February 16, 2016 Wander Woman
Do you have a dream calling you but you can’t choose it now because those around you will suffer? You might be using your dedication as an excuse to stay stuck.

The Importance of Finishing What You Start

By Gregory Ciotti on February 14, 2016 Habits, Not Hacks
If you don't ship, you'll never know.

The Procrastinator

By Marty Nemko Ph.D. on February 13, 2016 How To Do Life
A short-short story based on my procrastinating clients.

This Is How You Can Finally Get Something Done

When you’re doing 8 or 9 things at once you’re a certain kind of powerful, but when you do just one thing for a focused period of time, you’re incredibly powerful.

7 Ways Productive People Stay Focused

A few simple changes can help you get more done in less time.

Adult ADHD and Work: Turbo Charge Your Success

Would you like to have a better year at work, feel more organized, and less overwhelmed?

Procrastination As A Virtue For Creativity, Why It's False

By Timothy A Pychyl Ph.D. on January 18, 2016 Don't Delay
A recent Op-Ed in the New York Times outlined how procrastination is a virtue for creativity. The problem is the essay wasn’t about procrastination at all.

Keeping Your New Year’s Resolutions—Part 2

Unsure if you can keep your resolutions for 2016? Here's how to increase the likelihood that you'll stay on track and reach those goals.

A Surefire Tip For Making Yourself Do What You Need to Do

By Nir Eyal on January 14, 2016 Automatic You
New research reveals an effective way to get ourselves to do tough tasks.

Laziness and Procrastination

By Timothy A Pychyl Ph.D. on January 13, 2016 Don't Delay
"I am so lazy." What should we think of this?

Declutter NOW! How Prospect Theory Clutters Up Our Closets

Do you have trouble decluttering your home or office? We tend to over-value most items and it can be painful to let go of things we don't really need!