“Someday is a disease that will take your dreams to the grave with you.”
Tim Ferris, bestselling author & modern stoic.
In today`s fast paced world, we often find ourselves banging our heads against the wall trying to finish some tasks. Still, sometimes, a usual reaction for such works comes in saying to ourselves and making certain that we’ll do it later. The second option is generally going to Google to ask how one can combat procrastination.
So, Google gives you a lot of hacks and tips regarding this kind of habit, ranging from simple to very tricky. Maybe one blogger might tell you to turn up the thermostat, while others may say to you to remove all distractions. Consequently, you get confused about what exactly is going to work with your particular situation.
For this very same issue, we are here with some applicable and worthy philosophical solutions to overcome procrastination for good. Let`s dive into it:
You’ve probably heard about the term “Stoicism,” if not, don’t worry, we are here to enlighten you with some beneficial stoic hacks to destroy procrastination once for all.
“Stoicism” is a Hellenistic philosophy of personal ethics that is governed by its system of reasons and logic and its particular views on the natural world. It is a school of thought saying that “as social beings, the path to happiness or blessedness (eudaimonia) is present in accepting the time as it presents itself, by not allowing oneself to be controlled by the fear of pain or the desire for pleasure.
Mostly, people believe that philosophy is just an abstract thing, and it often stays only in the halls of universities and in the minds of academics as a theory or that it has nothing to do with practical life because philosophy often fails to provide practical guiding principles.
Here Stoicism distinguishes itself; it is based on the thought that one can control their thoughts and reactions to what is happening outside; our response is entirely in our control no matter what situation we are in.
For instance, in practice, you have a lot of things at your plate, and you might get panicked, and you start procrastinating. However, Stoicism says that it’s still in your power to react differently because it’s completely in your hands to decide if this is a good situation or bad.
You can give yourself an impetus that maybe this work will sharpen your skills, or this will enhance your confidence in your abilities instead of bad thoughts and procrastination.
“While we are postponing, life speeds by” Seneca
Stoicism: The Procrastination Crusher
The question here is, why do we procrastinate? The answer says that it’s our feeling that makes us believe that this task is hard to do, it’s not fun, or it may result in failure. These thoughts make us uncomfortable, and we keep pending things. But if you’re a stoic person, this is not a big deal anyway. As Marcus Aurelius said “The impediment to action advances action. What stands in the way becomes the way.”
Similarly, a stoic person takes it as an opportunity to grow; you never need to make yourself dull and mundane. There are heaps of ways a stoic person can overcome procrastination.
Do something that holds your back: Rings a bell? Surely it does. All you have to do is to make yourself stronger and ready for challenges in life. Sometimes, you procrastinate because of failure, but you need to know that failure is not a bad thing, this is ultimately a mind game, you need to realize that failure is going to teach you something. Stoicism works in a way that it neutralizes your negative and fearful thoughts. Likewise, it would help if you gave a chance with optimistic thoughts.
Stoicism makes you stronger
Stoicism works well by keeping your mind on a tight leash, a stoic’s thoughts are not allowed to wander around, it makes you focused and not to be distracted by every trivial thing that comes along. It talks about action because “actions speak louder than words.” To handle a situation without pending makes one`s life longer.
Spend less time on Frivolities
Another way in which Stoicism can add more crunch in your life while making you more productive is by helping you to decide what is truly valuable time spent and what is not. For example, Marcus Aurelius said: “It is essential for you to remember that the attention you give to any action should be in due proportion to its worth, for then you won’t tire and give up if you aren’t busying yourself with lesser things beyond what should be allowed. Since the vast majority of our words and actions are unnecessary, corralling them will create an abundance of leisure and tranquillity. As a result, we shouldn’t forget at each moment to ask, is this one of the unnecessary things?”
Once you’re able to cut unimportant things from your life, you can spend the rest of the time on actual, valuable, and real work. You’ll get important work done faster and that will lead you to increased happiness.
Visualize the Process
Sometimes, we fail to think about the process when we start working on some projects. Stoicism here deals with realistic expectations. If you wanna get rid of procrastination, you need to apply logic and systematic breakdown of tasks into individual steps from the start. It would help to see clearly how tasks move from one point to the next point. Stoicism moves you toward seeing things with a new perspective and realistic sense with 100% focus.
Change your meaning of Success
Pondering on Success? Great! As we’re all aware of, the reality is that success depends on different variables, some in our grasp while some are out of it. For the stoics, enjoyment is doing their job, and focusing on what they can control. It shouldn’t be only accomplishment or achievement. Instead, it should be measured by the amount of work and committed focus that you put toward a task. The Success of any task should be your learning from the task itself and how much you enjoyed doing it.
I hope this short article on using Stoicism to combat procrastination was clear and practical enough. Now it`s your time to start implementing some of the tips mentioned above. And by the way, Stoicism is not only extraordinarily useful to fight procrastination. It can be used in almost any other area of your life.
If you are looking for more Stoic lessons and how Stoicism can help your life, check out our store, more precisely “The Little Stoic” book. This is your ultimate guide on how to thrive in an emotionally rampant society. This short guide is power-packed with some of the teachings of history`s greatest men and women. It was developed to make Stoicism easy to understand and apply. Give it a go, it can change your life.
Hi there. I am Marcos Lima.
I am on a mission to make the most of myself and, at the same time, help others to do so as well. My life has changed considerably since the day that I decided not only to learn but also to apply what I was learning.
As a writer, making things simple and practical is a priority to me. Please, feel free to comment on each and every post if you wish so, and share it with anyone you think it may help.