Failure to launch

Everyone makes new year resolutions, but only a tiny fraction is able to turn their good intentions into action. We all procrastinate, and deep inside we know that procrastination is not an accident but a conscious choice we make. Unfortunately it’s not easy to avoid the sweet pleasure of immediate gratification compared to the difficulty in finishing a task which you probably never wanted to do in the first place.

So why do we fail to launch those goals we set?

  1. Too much introspection:

Thinking too much can be a bad thing. I am the type of person that will think so hard about the pros and cons of doing something, and all the ways it could go wrong that I end up not taking any step at all. For some it could simply be a fear of failing or self doubt. Regardless, when you find yourself thinking so hard about why some idea wouldn’t work before even trying, remind yourself always to think of the solution and not the problem. This way you are encouraged to act first and worry later.


So whatever your reason for not taking action or procrastinating, the key is to take that first step. Start doing something. Any action is better than no action. Don’t hold back or hesitate, just take a deep breath and jump right into action.

2. Denial:

This is avoidance of a situation or task because we do not like it. We refuse to face the current reality and seek ways to escape our anxiety, fears and frustrations of the situation. To defeat this, you need to ask yourself; “Why am I avoiding doing this?” “Why do I hate this task?” Understanding your feelings towards the task or situation is the key to resolving this. It may require you to change tactics (approach the situation in a different way) or even to drop it all together if need be.

3. Stress:

Procrastination is often used as a coping mechanism for when we feel stressed in our daily lives. When we feel so much pressure from life (relationships, work, our need to succeed), we tend to put off certain responsibilities more easily. However this can only act as a short term measure at best as watching your to do list pile up can only result in more stress which in turn leads to a further delay in launching those tasks and before you know it you’re caught in the vicious circle that is procrastination itself! The way to resolve this is; first learn to set attainable goals, and to break them up into smaller tasks whose results can be determined immediately. Secondly, to create a good reward system for yourself that can encourage and motivate you to stay on the task.

So are you suffering from a failure to launch your goals? How do you feel about them, and the tasks you need to accomplish? Perhaps you’re procrastinating because you are afraid of defeat or because you’re under some external pressure? What’s holding you back from achieving those goals?

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