Procrastination a trait we all need to work on


Procrastination is usually defined as the avoidance of doing a task that should be accomplished sooner, rather than later. When we procrastinate, we are usually doing more pleasurable things in place of less pleasurable ones. We then often find ourselves carrying out less urgent tasks instead of working on the more urgent ones that we really should be doing.

For example, I have been meaning to write an article on procrastination for some time, but for some reason, I just kept putting it off. Let’s face it, we all procrastinate to some degree or another.

And, as noted above, we all tend to put things off that we feel may not be as pleasurable as what we would rather be doing at that time.

One of my favorite thoughts regarding the things we are doing in our life at any one point in time is a question that I believe we should all ask ourselves on a periodic basis. Here is that question. “Am I doing the right things, or am I just doing things right?”

This personal question should get us to think about what we doing with our daily activities and perhaps assess whether this is what I really should be doing on any given day.

We all need to think about how we are doing with regard to our interactions with family and friends, how we may be doing with our personal job performance and interactions with co-workers, and asking ourselves how we are doing with regard to any personal goals we may have set for ourselves.

Here are a few quotes on this important personal subject of avoiding procrastination.

“Procrastination is like a credit card: it’s a lot of fun until you get the bill.” — Christopher Parker

“You may delay, but time will not.” — Benjamin Franklin

“You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.” — Abraham Lincoln

“Someday is not a day of the week.” — Janet Dailey

“If you want to get ahead in life, I’ve found that perhaps the most useless word in the world is “tomorrow.” — Jos. N. Harris

“Begin things today so that they can finish tomorrow.” – Moonish Sood

“Procrastination is the lazy cousin of fear. When we feel anxiety around an activity, we postpone it.” — Noelle Hancock,

“Never do tomorrow what you can do today. Procrastination is the thief of time.”  — Charles Dickens

“Procrastination is the enemy of every dream.” – Edmond Mbiaka

“The more you hesitate to do an important task, the more urgent it becomes.” — Matshona Dhliwayo

“Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That is why it is called the present.” — Bill Keane

Again, we may all find it helpful and productive to ask ourselves this question on a periodic basis, “Am I doing the right things, or am I just doing things right?”

EDITOR’S NOTE: Dr. Jim Surrell is the author of “The ABC’s For Success In All We Do” and the “SOS (Stop Only Sugar) Diet” books. He has his practice at the Digestive Health Clinic at U.P. Health System-Marquette. Requests for health topics for this column are encouraged. Contact Dr. Surrell by email at