Tackle procrastination to get healthier!

HELLO FELLOW PROCRASTINATOR, good to have you here!

IT’S SUNDAY MORNING and I woke up too early, with a virtual to-do list on my mind. It’s things around the house that need cleaning, e-mails to be sent out, a scientific review to write while barricated in my study without any contact with the outside world, people I want to see, a slow cooking session to enjoy, tiramisu to make ahead, etcetera.

What I actually want to do with my Sunday is slowly laze around in my pj’s and make pancakes as I bask in the sunshine that’s falling through the open-curtain window.

Hmmm. My ideal Sunday version is quite a bit away from my actual Sunday plans.

Stephan de Haas nature 1

PROCRASTINATION

Procrastination tends to happen when our ideal day looks different than the day we actually have ahead and when what we have planned is actually (for whatever reason) kind of stressful.

The longer you take to get started, the less tempting – and the more scary – the pile looks like to get started on. It can be stressful just thinking about everything that needs to get done, and in an effort to avoid all that stress, your body puts you in it’s most wonderful, stress-avoiding modus: procrastination.

Stephan de Haas nature 2

WHY?

Because it feels good to avoid stressful things. Just realising what you want to do for yourself, and what is on your list due to outside expectations, might give you peace of mind. Ask yourself why each of those to-do things is on your list. Because you want it to be? Or because someone else wants or expects you to do it?

BUT WHY?

It’s important to do things you love. Intrinsic motivation is that kind of motivation that comes from the inside – it’s focused on your interests, your wishes, what you want to achieve and where you want to be in the future. NOTHING can motivate you like finding your intrinsic motivation can.

BUT WHY?

If procrastination is playing a regular part in your life, you might be afraid to move on to greater things, or you might be afraid of feeling like a failure if the things you wanted to achieve don’t work out as well as you’d hoped. Maybe you’re scared to embark on something new because you’re afraid it might not turn out as amazing as you expected, or that you won’t be good at it as you imagine you would. Fear plays a big role in many of our life-decisions (as also vastly studied by Brene Brown), and procrastination is one of them.

For me, I’d say I have better and less better days, and that’s okay. By writing this post I have procrastinated other things I had to do (see beginning of post).

PROCRASTINATION CAN RELATE TO YOUR HEALTH

Becoming healthier can be a daunting task. Losing weight can feel like mission impossible. In that sense, it might be quite stressful just to think about it. We might feel afraid to fail even before we started. This fear of failure might stop us from starting in the first place (kind of ironic actually!).

Exercising is a good example of something that people love to procrastinate. Granted – I would also procrastinate if I had to do fitness. I think fitness is boring. Other things, like outdoor activities, jumping around dancing and team sports are much more my thing!

Stephan de Haas nature 3

TACKLE PROCRASTINATION TO GET HEALTHY

  • Find what you like in healthy lifestyle, healthy food and healthy exercising!
  • You don’t need to be eating anything you don’t love, or eating less than you would want to.
  • Pick the healthy foods that you love, in combinations that are feasible for you.
  • Find sports you love. Walk to work. Cycle to class. There is no need to start running a mile today.

You can do it! Start tomorrow, next week or in a year.

The beautiful images in this post belong to stephandehaas.com , thank you Stephan!

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