I’m an INFJ. I used to struggle with procrastination.
When I say I’m an INFJ, I mean: if you had to define my personality type, it would be that of an INFJ (I am predominantly introverted and intuitive, and I tend to feel and judge).
When I say I used to struggle with procrastination, I mean: I would spend days thinking about a task, or activity, then decide to do that, then spend a few more days procrastinating. It was that bad.
Over the years, I have learned to turn my weaknesses (as an INFJ) into strengths, or at least I’ve learned to deal with them.
So when it comes to procrastination, yes, I still struggle with it. But I’m much more efficient now. Now I actually take action. I no longer postpone my tasks or goals for “just another day”.
And in this post I’ll share what worked for me, and I hope this information will be helpful.
Whether you’re INFJ, ISTJ, or any other type, really.
Why INFJs are prone to procrastination
Not all MBTI types are created equal!
There are some personality types that find it especially difficult to take action and “just do it”.
The introverted, intuitive, feeling, judging type is one of them. But why?
Here are my thoughts (if you’d like to share your own thoughts on the subject, please do so by leaving a comment at the end).
INFJ and perfectionism
INFJs are idealists, and they are very intense. For INFJs, everything in their life has a special meaning.
Sometimes it’s a good thing… and sometimes it’s a bad thing.
Because when everything has a meaning, you really do tend to overanalyze it, overinterpret it, overestimate it.
Naturally, this results in perfectionism. And perfectionism very often translates to procrastination.
Perfectionism is definitely a common weakness of the INFJ type. INFJs want to do things the right way; they want things to be under their control.
Intuition (N) and introversion (I)
A possible disadvantage of intuition, especially when taken to an extreme (and INFJs tend to be extremely intuitive) is the risk of being too detached from the objective world.
The INFJ’s mind can be so immersed in the future, in possibilities, in what may happen, that it can forget the present, what’s happening right now. This can easily lead to procrastination.
As for introversion, think: which personality type is more likely to take action quickly? Extroverts or introverts?
The answer is almost always extroverts simply because 1) they find motivation in objects, meaning the outer world, and 2) introverts tend to think deeply… and slowly.
How I (as an INFJ) beat procrastination
Alright, here are my five tips. Or at least five things that worked for me, that helped me get stuff done and not overthink so much.
In no particular order:
1. I realized life is too short
Sorry to break it to you, but our existence is actually pretty short. That’s one of the uncomfortable truths about life you should be comfortable with.
Because it gives us tremendous motivation. If life is short, there is no time. If there is no time, it’s time to take action!
It’s as simple as that. There is a quote from the Buddha’s Little Instruction Book that says the trouble is, you think you have time. I think that’s the best way to sum it up.
Life is short. You think you have time… but you actually don’t. Your time is precious — don’t wait! If you procrastinate, you’ll regret it.
2. I started using to-do lists
To-do lists are so simple yet so effective. They just work. Since I started using them my productivity has skyrocketed.
What I like to do specifically is, write a list of all the tasks (or things I want/need to do) at night, right before I go to bed.
This motivates me to wake up early and go through the list, and cross off those items — it’s satisfying.
If you haven’t already, give to-do lists a try. They won’t cost you anything, and it only takes a minute or so to create one.
3. I wrote down my goals
Similarly, you want to write down your goals. I am referring to your big dreams and aspirations, not just your daily tasks.
When you write down what you want to experience and/or achieve in your life, you no longer procrastinate because you gain clarity; you become clear about your goals.
It’s up to you whether you want to journal about your goals, create a vision board, or write an actual manifestation list.
But I’m telling you, it makes all the difference in the world. It helps with procrastination, perfectionism, and laziness.
4. I said no to the wrong people
I used to be very generous with my time and this meant I would generally say yes to everyone. I would spend time with people who were not right for me.
This affected me in two ways: I would pick up their (negative) vibes, and I would be constantly distracted from my real priorities. I would also feel much more stressed and or/drained.
So my fourth tip for you is: learn to say no to all those people, places, activities, tasks etc. that don’t contribute to your happiness.
Once you’re in a situation where there is positive energy (your own, and other people’s), you won’t procrastinate as much. Guess who is very likely to procrastinate — people who suffer from depression.
5. I realized the time will never be right
Finally, I was able to go against my perfectionist nature, and stop being a control freak, the moment I realized the time would never be right.
Say you want to work on a project but you’re tired; you can be tired and still do it. Say you’re a bit nervous but want to talk to someone; you can be nervous and talk to them. And so on.
It’s a concept that’s easy to understand, but hard to implement. That is, if you’re a perfectionist like me. But still.
Whenever you struggle with procrastination, whenever you catch yourself thinking the time isn’t right — remind yourself that the time will never be right, so you may as well do the thing now.
Are you an INFJ? Do you procrastinate?
Thanks for reading this post!
I’m curious: are you an INFJ yourself, and if so, do you struggle with procrastination, or perfectionism?
Would you like to share your thoughts, or your own tips to beat procrastination?
If so, please leave a reply below 👇