“Was du heute kannst besorgen, das verschiebe nicht auf morgen!”
(What you can do today, don’t leave it for tomorrow.)

What a wonderful German saying that is, but it is much more complicated than that.

As human beings we love to procrastinate, i.e. doing things that give us pleasure rather than the things that come in as a burden we “have to” do. It is probably something we all experience once in a while and some of us much more than others. It also has a lot to do with the situation and our mood.

The procrastination equation

Pierce Steele wrote an interesting book on this topic and established an equation of two factors that play a role in procrastination and motivation:

In order to increase your motivation you must increase expectancy of success and value of doing the task as well as decrease impulsiveness by removing distractions and the delay of the reward to have it more immediate.

Work on the elements of the equation

Alex Vermeer has worked on a very visual way of tackling our motivation setbacks, which you can find below. As delay cannot directly be addressed it is not part of the scheme, but whenever you are procrastinating, just check out how to work on the other three to implicitly decrease delay, too.

Set goals and be consistent

Help yourself to success, because this will boost your motivation for further achievements!