Can procrastination create an addiction? Two reasons why this might be true!

Drawing by Adrian Serghie

This question came to me while I was writing yesterday’s post. So can procrastination become an addiction? If so, why and what can we do about it?

Even though we all know that procrastination is a problem, I don’t we think about it as something very severe. However, procrastination is a big blocker in our evolution because time passes by and time is cruel and heartless.

The Biological component

When we think about postponing something and not doing it in the moment, we feel a little relieved. This is because our brain releases some dopamine (the reward hormone), which makes us feel better. Getting dopamine over and over again in short periods of time will make us addicted to it and, indirectly, of procrastination.

The Behavioral component

If we often procrastinate, we’ll create a habit out of it. For example, I used to wake up at 4 AM every day when I was writing my book, but now, when I’m working at my second book, I cannot do that anymore and my procrastination delays my evolution. Basically, I made a habit of snoozing that damn alarm when it goes off at 4 AM. I keep telling myself that I’ll wake up tomorrow, but I don’t do it. I know what I have to do to get out of this, but I made a habit of snoozing the alarm. I made a procrastination habit, which I need to break.

Moreover, the problem it isn’t with one habit, but with the idea that you can postpone things. Once you procrastinate one time and it worked, you’ll tend to do it over and over again and one habit regarding some particular behavior (like in my case), can extend to a behavioral pattern we would use with every situation we encounter that we don’t like that much.

These two components combined can make out of procrastination one of the biggest dragons we have to face and overcome so we can continue our evolution.

What do you think? Can procrastination become an addiction?

28 thoughts on “Can procrastination create an addiction? Two reasons why this might be true!

  1. Yes it can become an addiction and the two reasons given are apt.. brain needs easy way and so procrastination is a good way for brain to save its energy.

      1. An addiction is something we can’t do without, live without. We can’t stop doing it.
        Habit is something we normally or usually or routinely do. But if it is not available, we aren’t able to – it is ok.

  2. I do believe that what is actually going on when people procrastinating. The more it is happening the more they do that. Most are like to blame the lack of time, the busyness, the situations and when they see that nothing bad happened and no one kick their asses, they repeating the habit all over again. For me, procrastination is a waste of energy and resources that don’t move further. I don’t like to stay, I always moving and maybe my action saving me from that bad habit. 🙂 I did that before anyway, and I see now this was my hugest mistake.

  3. I think it can become an addiction/habit/lifestyle that can sabotage success, ambition and even happiness.
    It can get in theway of a promising career as well as of a blossoming relationship, since a chronic procrastinator tends to put things off in every aspect of life.

  4. Really interesting way to look at the challenge of procrastination. I relate to the snooze button, but my alarm goes off far later = 7! -Rebecca

  5. I would ask if you’ve met my mother, but I know the answer. Yes – procrastination can become a very ugly habit, or worse yet, an addiction.

  6. Really great topic. Thanks for this! Never thought of procrastination as an addiction before but I surely see how it could be!

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