Getting Around To Procrastination

Procrastination rarely gets the respect that it deserves.   When psychologists address procastinating at all, it is often with a touch of tongue-in-cheek humour.   While everybody procrastinates at some point, our justification for it usually fails to fool anyone (including ourselves).  

Most dictionaries define procrastination as  “To put off doing something, especially out of habitual carelessness or laziness.”   Occurring up to 25 percent of the time according to some research studies,  procrastination is considerably higher in students with over 70 percent reporting procrastination for assignments at some point.   Procrastinating students can waste up to a third of their day with stalling activities such as sleeping, watching television, reading, or whatever other diversion they can devise.    Though men seem more likely to procrastinate than women and the habit of putting things off becomes less common as we grow older, procrastination can be seen in people of all ages.

But is procrastinating necessarily a bad thing?   While research studies have linked it  to various negative consequences including medical, academic, and financial problems, the question of why procrastinating can be so seductive is hard to answer.   Despite more than forty years of research looking at procrastination, there still seems to be little agreement among researchers in different fields about what procrastination is and how it should be dealt with.

To read more, check out my Psychology Today blog post. 


Related Stories

  • Chronic Pain and Suicide
  • Do Peer Networks Influence Male Sexual Aggression?
  • Mental Illness Blamed for Bizarre 2010 Spending Spree


The information provided on the is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient/site visitor and his/her health professional. This information is solely for informational and educational purposes. The publication of this information does not constitute the practice of medicine, and this information does not replace the advice of your physician or other health care provider. Neither the owners or employees of nor the author(s) of site content take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading this site. Always speak with your primary health care provider before engaging in any form of self treatment. Please see our Legal Statement for further information.

PsyWeb Poll

Are you currently taking or have you ever been prescribed anti-depressants?
Total votes: 3979