Come on, we are all guilty of it. Always finding a reason not to do the things we should be doing right now.
Why do we do it? Thinkers philosophers and psychologists come up with many reasons why you and I don’t do the things we need to attend to that can help us achieve more in our life, and our carreer goals.
A common one, especially in the music business is ‘Fear of Success‘. Writer Steve Pavlina gives a good explanation on this aspect here,
Fear of success can be far more insidious because it’s almost always unconscious. But it’s not fear of success itself that is the problem but rather fear of the side effects of success, many of which may be genuinely unwanted. Fears that are never evaluated consciously have a tendency to grow stronger. The reason is simple behavioral conditioning — when you avoid something you fear (either consciously or subconsciously), you automatically reinforce the avoidance behavior. So when you (even unknowingly) avoid working on your goal because of a hidden fear of success, you actually reinforce the habit of procrastination, so as time goes by, it becomes harder and harder to get yourself to take action. Insidious!
It’s like a self destruct button that completely screws things up, months, years of work completely wasted because of an inabilty to act when you need to. It is a form of self sabotage that you as an artist can really do without, and if you suffer from bouts of procrastination there are ways you can beat it.
I did a bit more research on the subject and found this very interesting article with a whole bunch of cool explanations and tips on dealing with it. Leo Babauta wrote this for DesignTaxi.com, which i think is relevent for all creative types. My favourite tip from him follows….
Enjoy the process. When we dread something, we put it off—but instead, if we can learn to enjoy it, it won’t be as hard or dreadful. Put yourself in the moment, and enjoy every action. For example, if you want to go out to run, don’t think about the hard run ahead, but about putting on your shoes—enjoy the simplicity of that action. Then focus on getting out the door—that’s not hard. Then focus on warming up with a fast walk or light jog—that can be nice and enjoyable. Then feel your legs warm up as you start running a little faster, and enjoy the beautiful outdoors. This process can be done with anything, from washing dishes to reading to writing. Enjoy yourself in the moment, without thinking of future things you dread, and the activity can be very pleasant and even fun. And if it is, you won’t put it off.
You can read the full article here