5 Benefits of procrastination

Posted by on Aug 9, 2013 in Personal Development | 8 comments

Yep, I’m a procrastinator. A highly successful procrastinator, or so I tell myself. The thing is, I use procrastination to my benefit. Really, it can be a good thing! No, really.

Not too long ago I put off writing a blog post because I needed a break. I got some much needed me time and I was inspired to write 17 Ways to give yourself a break. Procrastination not only gave me a break, it gave me a great idea for a post. See, procrastination can work to your benefit!

Now I’ve read a lot of articles that suggest procrastination is a very bad thing. Maybe it is for some or maybe society has  got it all wrong- just look at multitasking and time management– they have their place but more often than not these tools are making life more work, not less! Maybe procrastination can be a hindrance or a benefit, depending on what you do with it.

5 Benefits of procrastination

01. Boosting inspiration, innovation, and creativity

I can’t force that “ah-ha” moment- it happens on it’s own time. In my experience the ah-ha usually comes when I’m doing something completely different- usually an activity that doesn’t require much brain power.

I often procrastinate while writing and, voila!, the words come on their own!

02. Improved decision-making

I’m a big believer in trusting my instincts but often my thinking gets in the way. Procrastination allows me to stop thinking about the decision in front of me and gives my instinct the opportunity to come to the forefront of my mind. Intuition will guide me to the best decision at the right time.

Also, procrastinators rarely make impulse purchases! That sounds like a good decision to me.

03. Better self-care

The stuff I procrastinate is usually the stuff of to-do lists- like errands and chores. The thing about to-do lists is I can trick myself into thinking all that stuff I have to do is more important than taking care of me. Often when I procrastinate a to-do, I use that time to take care of me. I take a nap, go for a walk, or just relax.

My kitty, Tiger, approves of procrastination that leads to more kitty-care, aka rubs and scratches!

04. A quieter mind

Speaking of to-do lists, it’s good for me to remember that I’m a human being, not a human doing. Sometimes I need to stop doing and just be. Just be in the moment. Just be here, now. Just do nothing at all!

“Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.” ~Marthe Troly-Curtin

05. Live a more meaningful life

Procrastinating helps me cut out the things I think about doing that don’t really need to be done. I focus on what’s important first and if I don’t get that other stuff done- so what? If it was actually important, I would have made it a priority and gotten it done. Ahh…. now I can focus on living a meaningful life instead of just a full life.

positive procrastinationImage via DesignedWalls

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I love your comments! Do you agree procrastination can be a good thing? What benefits have you enjoyed because of procrastination? 

8 Comments

  1. Lucky you. I can’t say the same thing for myself. Procrastination doesn’t do me any good.

    • I’m sorry to hear you haven’t found any benefit from a little procrastination from time-to-time. I hope whatever you’re doing is working for you!

      Have a grateful day!

      Chrysta

  2. Hi Chrysta

    Well this week my procrastination on not clipping my cats claws on Monday, means I may not be able to do it for a long time! If it wasn’t for what happened Tuesday morning it would have been no big deal. But it did give me something to write about although I would have rather had a different subject to write about.

    So, sometimes putting off something to sleep on it pays off, but other times not necessarily.

    Many times we feel like we have to get everything done right now. When the truth is we are probably the only one who actually cares. Me time is rejuvenating and we all need it.

    Good thoughts on the subject.

    Mary

    • Thanks for your awesome comment, Mary!

      You’re absolutely right, of course, procrastination can yield positive or negative results, depending on the situation, though since I mostly see the negative, I wanted to highlight the positive after some procrastinating of my own lead to positive results.

      And, as you said, we feel like we have to get everything done right now but usually we’re the only one that cares- that’s me, alright! I can put a lot of pressure over myself and one lesson I am in the process of learning is usually when I let things go I discover that thing I thought needed to be done right away didn’t even really need to be done at all, or that there’s no harm in putting it off.

      As a “go-getter” personality, I need to be reminded to procrastinate from time-to-time and I expect other more relaxed personalities (like my husband) need to be reminded to get things done!

      Thanks again for joining the conversation! Have a fantastic day!

      Chrysta

  3. Hi Chrysta,

    I like your way of thinking.
    I must admit that I see myself as more of a an action taker.
    I do think that it is important to plan before doing.
    Could this planning time be labelled procrastination?
    If so, you definitely have some great points on the subject and have given us something else to procrastinate about :-)

    Thank you
    Gary

    • Thanks for your awesome comment, Gary!

      Like you, I am an action taker and this is exactly why it benefits me to procrastinate from time-to-time! I expect there are other people that are more relaxed about life and those people would benefit from more productivity- it all depends on our usual behaviors and habits.

      It’s interesting that you suggest planning time might be labeled as procrastination. When I am faced with a problem I often fall back on the three A’s- awareness, acceptance, action. The idea is that without acceptance, an honest and nonjudgmental view of the situation, I don’t know the best action to take. So often we jump from awareness of a problem straight to action, but in that case we are often reacting to the problem rather than responding to it. Acceptance is key, and I suppose you could say delaying action is a form of procrastination!

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Have a fantastic day!

      Chrysta

  4. Hi Chrysta,

    Ha, who would of thought procrastination could be a good thing. But I totally agree with you, it does have its benefits.

    For me procrastination can sometimes get me fired up. I’ve put things off for so long there’s just no waiting any longer. I’ve got to just do it!

    I do love the saying ‘Time wasted is not wasted time’. We do need to take time for ourselves and just live our lives. There are so many unrealized benefits there. Like you mentioned, better self care, improved decision making and a more meaningful life. Who doesn’t need those things :-)

    Blessings,
    Liz

    • Thanks for your awesome comment, Liz!

      I agree, sometimes procrastination gets me fired up, too! I’m a self-motivated person, but I can still fall into complacency and just a little procrastination can be the fuel I need to stop going through the motions and really apply myself.

      Honestly, when I do procrastinate it is usually not because I am avoiding something but because I really do need a break or don’t know the next best course of action. And, at the end of the day, I always seem to get the really important stuff done when it needs to be done so I say procrastination is okay! 😉

      Have a fabulous day!

      Chrysta

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