It’s like a dark reality that hovers everything you do (or don’t do).

And as your various physical, emotional, and spiritual piles grow, so does your stress level.

You’re so desperate for relief you’re on the verge of quitting your goals and dreams. But deep down you know it won’t help.

You’ve allowed procrastination to steal your dreams before but you weren’t any happier for it.

So you feel trapped. You feel like procrastination is about to win again. But you can beat procrastination at its own game!

Peeling back the layers

Procrastination is a formidable foe. But it’s not unbeatable. You just have to stop fighting it directly.

What’s needed is understanding. You need to peel back the layers to see what’s driving your procrastination below the surface. Once you do, you’ll have the opportunity to develop the tools you need to overcome it.

Here are the steps:

1. Expose your fears

Procrastination gets us because we fail to understand the nature of the problem. It’s not about time management. It’s rarely about laziness or lack of will-power.

It’s about fear. Pure and simple. In order to beat procrastination, you must first confront your fears. These fears often revolve around the possibility of failure or humiliation.

We feel what writer Stephen Pressfield calls “the Resistance.”

It’s often experienced as the voice in your heads saying things like, “You’re not good enough” or “Who do you think you are?”

The Resistance drives our procrastination by convincing us to put things off into perpetuity.

You can’t confront the Resistance directly, but you can write your fears down. This simple act exposes your secret concerns to the light.

As soon as you get your fears down on paper, they begin to lose their power. They become less oppressive. Some even become laughable. You’ll see that you always have the option to act in spite of your fears—maybe even because of your fears.

2. Thank your fears

Before you act though, there’s an important step that most people skip right over:

Thanking your fears.

Why? Because the more we demonize and fight our fears, the stronger they get and the more desperate we feel.

Whether your fears are rational or irrational, think of them as benevolent forces trying to protect you from harm.

It may make sense to thank the rational fears but the irrational ones? Yep.

And since most of the fears associated with procrastination and the Resistance are irrational, it’s important to face them with kindness and understanding.

Look over your list of fears and thank each of them for their concern. Reassure them that you are not actually in harm’s way and that you are safe, whether you succeed or fail.

Do this with love and your fears will fall away from your psyche.

3. Act

Once you’ve done the inner work, now you’re ready to act.

You’ll need to prepare yourself because the Resistance won’t go down without a fight.

It may not attack you outright as before, but it will say more subtle things like, “You’re not ready” or “You need to wait till it’s perfect.”

But you already know that if you wait for conditions to be perfect, you’ll never act. Instead, take Steven Pressfield’s sound advice:

“Don’t think. Act. We can always revise and revisit once we’ve acted. But we can accomplish nothing until we act.”

No fancy hacks or tricks will do here. Just action.

The good news is that it doesn’t take special powers to achieve these steps. All you need to do is commit to doing and repeating them as soon as procrastination shows up.

So what are you waiting for? Let’s go make things happen and beat your procrastination once and for all.


Cylon is a spiritual chaplain, musician, devoted husband, and busy dad of seven. He blogs about practical spiritual tips for living well at Spiritual Living For Busy People - sign up and get his free guide 20 Little Tricks To Instantly Improve Your Mood Even If You Feel Like Punching Something (or Someone) You can also purchase his book Self-Love: How to Love Yourself Unconditionally


  1. That’s an interesting perspective I never thought of. Procrastination not being about time, but about fear. I like the idea of identifying the fear behind it, but I don’t know about thanking it! 🙂 No, seriously, I see the value in that too.

    • I hadn’t thought of it that way before either Debbie. Isn’t it great to be able to see that there’s always more than one perspective on life? 🙂

  2. Very insightful, getting to know your fears first! I’ve always found that action is the solution too. You just have to stop thinking and do it!

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