No one talks about the benefits of procrastination because society has viewed it negatively for centuries. Even famous people like Mark Twain and Benjamin Franklin saw procrastination as an unfavorable attribute.
Twain said one should never put off until tomorrow something that he or she could do well today. Franklin mentioned that time doesn’t delay even when people do.
Both gentlemen were correct in their views, but they also missed a key point: the benefits of procrastination rock. The following text contains some insights on the positive aspects of procrastination that no one talks about.
The Art of Procrastination
Dithering, stalling, and hesitating are synonyms for procrastination. Those terms refer to putting something off until later, and they can apply to any aspect of life. Most people are more familiar with the disadvantages than with any positive effects.
They think of missed job opportunities, love stories that never materialized, and dreams that never came true. Procrastination has a bad reputation for throwing shade on people’s bright visions. But sometimes, hesitating can be more fruitful and lucrative than jumping the gun. These are some examples:
Waiting To Make Employment Decisions
Waiting a few days to accept a job offer is an example of a beneficial hesitation. Often, candidates take job offers immediately because they fear losing the position. In doing so, they lose their bargaining chip and the entire poker table at once.
Asking an employer to allow you a few days to consider an offer can benefit you in two ways. First, it will give you additional time to evaluate all aspects of the position to decide whether it’s right for you. Secondly, it will give the employer time to rethink their offer.
You might find that the position doesn’t seem appealing after doing the math. On the other hand, the prospective employer may find you more valuable and raise the bar on the offer. Procrastinating won’t guarantee the latter, but it will prevent you from doing a hasty job snatch.
Waiting will also reveal how invested the company is in you and whether they believe you are an asset. You probably won’t want to waste your time with an employer willing to skip over you within 48 hours. Thus, you will save yourself future headaches and disappointment by waiting at the beginning.
Waiting To Advance a Relationship
Many benefits can come from waiting to move to the next relationship stage. For some people, that means waiting to get physical, and it means postponing a marriage to others. The procrastinator in this situation gets to see the other person’s intentions by stalling.
An upstanding person will respect the other individual’s values and standards, but a person with ill intentions will leave or pressure the procrastinator. Historical teaching describes love as being patient. Thus, the procrastinator benefits by learning whether love is even a factor. Wouldn’t you want to know?
Hesitating To Speak
Historical teachings also indicate that people should be quick to listen and slow to speak. Therefore, hesitating to speak is also advantageous.
It gives you time to process the focal subject matter and think of the most effective way to respond. This concept is especially true when you’re upset—procrastinating for 10 seconds before speaking can prevent heated words from escaping.
Waiting To Have a Child
Waiting to have a little one until later in life is a hesitation that some women choose. The norm is to view it as a disadvantage to women because of their declining fertility.
However, their rising maturity and stability are benefits. While it might take a while for a procrastinator to fall pregnant, she will be in a position to offer genuine love and support to her child when she does.
Putting Off College Until Later
Many advantages can come from stalling to go to college. An older person may be more focused and get better grades because the exploratory age has passed.
Late nights and frat parties won’t be a factor, and all free time can go to the individual’s studies. Job opportunities may also be more abundant for older individuals because of their maturity and life experiences.
Holding Work Projects Until the Last Minute
Waiting to perform homework and work projects has its perks, too. For one, it will give you more focus and drive. You may also feel an adrenaline rush as you race against the clock to get your project done. You won’t have any room for distractions, and you’ll put 100 percent of your effort into the work, because you’ll know you don’t have room for errors.
Stalling To Answer a Question
Waiting to answer a question adds analytical time. Why did the person ask you the question? How will the answer affect you or the other person? Will you be obligating yourself to do something? You’ll give yourself time to think about those characteristics and then provide the most sensible answer.
Waiting To Sell Something
The benefits of procrastination are plentiful in business. In that world, waiting to sell something means adding value to the item. It shows that you aren’t desperate to unload your product because you know it has a higher value than your current offers. You create a demand for your supply when hesitating under those circumstances.
Hesitating To Submit Completed Work
You can also find many advantages in hesitating when you work. For example, you might wait to submit a novel manuscript or artistic collection. Sometimes, holding off on something for a few days gives you a fresh set of eyes when you review it for the last time.
You might find that you can better express something in your written work. Maybe you’ll want to add a new color, element, or sentiment to your painting. Waiting to submit your project could make it a more stunning piece of work.
The Benefits of Procrastination Psychology
You’ve seen examples of procrastinating in different scenarios. It’s now time to look at the effects of procrastination and how it can shape you into a more successful person. These are some of the top benefits of procrastination and how waiting can help you:
It Heightens Your Creativity
Working on an artistic project at intervals can boost your creativity. You should never be afraid to put one of your works to the side until you get a masterful surge of expressive energy. You might find that your projects are more vibrant when using that strategy.
It Relieves Stress
Another benefit of procrastination is that it alleviates stress. Waiting is the most effective way to thrust pressure off your back. By adopting a mindset that you can do a task or make a decision at “any time,” you psychologically revoke all the distress outside forces attempt to assign you. In doing so, you’ll find most of your tasks enjoyable.
It Sharpens Your time Management Skills
Waiting to complete work and school assignments can strengthen your time management skills and teach you to be productive in smaller increments. Something about forcing yourself to complete a task with little time naturally breaks you into more efficient practices.
It Helps You Make Better Choices
You make more advantageous choices when you wait to act. You also see more positive results from those choices. Moreover, you get to take a deep breath and run through the various outcomes in your mind. That luxury isn’t there when you rush, but it’s abundant when procrastinating.
It Puts You in Charge
Lastly, procrastinating puts you in charge of your life. It shows the world that you value yourself, your work, and your serenity. Your decisions are slow but solid, and your steps are soft but powerful. Furthermore, you no longer wait for good things to come to you; you become the good thing everyone else waits to receive.
How To Be a Procrastinator
Some people are natural procrastinators, and others must learn the lifestyle. In a 1991 psychological study, Ferrari stated that 20 percent of adults were chronic procrastinators.
Those people hesitated about everything from what to wear to deciding when to take out the trash. The overall view of such people was negative, and reports labeled them as having maladaptive lifestyles.
What if procrastinators aren’t “disordered”? Suppose they’re misunderstood geniuses who have a better handle on managing life than those who claim to be “normal”? Maybe they’re only maladaptive to those who have narrow-minded processes and control addictions. Analyses always have various perspectives because flawed humans perform them.
Society will most likely view you as a straight rebel if you decide to become a procrastinator, but don’t let it stop you from transitioning. You have a right as a human being to move at a pace comfortable for you. No one can force you to do a single thing before you’re ready, and you cannot force them either.
To be a procrastinator, you must view life as something to digest rather than devour. You must chew it into small portions and savor each delicious piece. Then, allow it to nourish you before taking another bite. If other people don’t like the way you eat your food, they don’t have to sit at the table with you.
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Founder of Eggcellentwork.com. With over 20 years of experience in HR and various roles in corporate world, Jenny shares tips and advice to help professionals advance in their careers. Her blog is a go-to resource for anyone looking to improve their skills, land their dream job, or make a career change.