Some of us are more prone to procrastination... - Deepstash

Some of us are more prone to procrastination than others. Pychyl says this group often has high traits of neuroticism, such as worry, and depression, and self-consciousness. They have over-active, dominating amygdala.

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MORE IDEAS FROM This is what happens to your brain when you procrastinate

Another important brain reaction is how it perceives the future. Research done by UCLA social psychologist Hal Hershfield found that the brain views our future self in the same way it views another person.

“Hershfield used a functional MRI to look at the brains of people when they were thinking of their present self, their future self, or the other,” says Pychyl. “When we think of future self, the same parts of the brain light up as when we think about the other.”

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Pychyl says researchers in Germany compared the brains of procrastinators to non-procrastinators using functional MRI. It found that the brains of procrastinators have a larger amygdala, which is part of the limbic system known for fight or flight.

“What’s happening is what we call the ‘amygdala hijack,'” says Pychyl. “The procrastinators are reacting emotionally, and the emotion-focused coping response is to escape. It’s saying, ‘I don’t want these negative emotions I’ll experience during the task,’ and so it avoids the task.”

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People tend to procrastinate to avoid emotionally unpleasant tasks - so they choose to focus on something that provides a temporary mood boost.

This creates a vicious cycle: procrastination itself causes shame and guilt — which in turn leads people to procrastinate even further.

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Get Back to Being Happy

Our brain is tricky, and there are subtle ways to get it to be less depressed or anxious. If we are constantly feeling guilty, shameful or even worry a lot, the brain wants to continue that activity due to it providing a source of gratification to it.

Just as negative thinking keeps the brain in an inactive and dull state, positive thinking, or gratitude has the effect of boosting serotonin, that is beneficial for your health and mood.

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When tiny tasks become major irritants

We put off small jobs, like a quick email to a colleague or menial paperwork. We keep putting it off. We waste time thinking about how annoying the task is, but it does not go away.

These small tasks take up a considerable amount of space in our minds. But there are simple ways to bring them back to size.

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