The Movement Blues: Overcoming Your Procrastination with a Bit of Physical Activity | Rice Psychology

The Movement Blues: Overcoming Your Procrastination with a Bit of Physical Activity

Consider the following story as it relates to this week’s topic.

I don’t consider myself lazy. If anything, I enjoy doing certain things, like going out with my husband for a day of shopping, taking the kids out for lunch and even heading over to my parents’ house to help them with chores. The thing is, I have a tendency to wait until the last minute to do things. It’s rare that I complete certain things around the house on time, or anywhere for that matter. I’m also dealing with a little bit of depression and have noticed that my procrastination worsens depending on how I’m feeling. What can I do to overcome this?

We’d be lying if we told you that each athlete in the world is in workout mode 24 hours a day. After all, who doesn’t want to settle on the couch with a bowl of chips in hand, binging on the latest Netflix series? Procrastination, especially when faced with a task that requires significant effort, is normal. However, according to Rachel Hershenberg, assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Emory University, procrastination increases with depression.

While this sounds like something impossible to overcome, it’s important to understand that getting over this hurdle can potentially help treat depression. Exercise is known to boost your mood, act as a healthy coping mechanism and provides people with a feeling of triumph. So, what are some things you can do?

If procrastination and avoidance have developed into major roadblocks for you, then know that our licensed psychologists in Tampa can help you.

Get Movin’

People tend to feel motivated if they know their friends will be with them during activities. Click To Tweet

According to a study showcased in the American Journal of Psychiatry, 12% of cases of depression in 34,000 participants could have improved if at least one hour of exercise per week had been achieved. Now, we recognize that depression can make it nearly impossible to lift more than a finger, but here are some steps you can take:

  • Don’t Wait – Want to start exercising until you feel a little better? Nonsense! You’ll actually improve when you exercise. It is the key to get the “feeling better feelings started”, so get moving as soon as you finish reading this blog!
  • Baby Steps – The urge to start your workout routine may be big, but it’s best to start off small. For instance, take the stairs on the way to your office next time, or just take the dog out for a 5-10-minute walk. No marathon training is necessary!
  • Consistency is Key – It’s better to work out a few times a week then one week out of the entire month. Also, try to get your exercise done when you feel the best.
Mental negativity can halt your efforts, so overcome it by tracking your successes in a journal. Click To Tweet
  • Don’t do it Alone – Want to be held accountable for your exercise? A personal trainer can do exactly that! They’ll help you start off at a great pace, motivate you and keep you interested in everything you do.
  • In Groups – People tend to feel motivated if they know their friends will be with them during activities. Why not join a spin class, a cycling group, a runner’s club or even dog agility classes? We recommend any other gathering that will help you come back for more.
  • Keep a Record – Mental negativity can halt your efforts, so overcome it by tracking your successes in a journal. Each time you see what you’ve written, you’re bound to feel motivated and ready for more.
It’s important to be patient with yourself and keep trying when things don’t work out. Click To Tweet
  • Don’t Sweat It – The truth is, you may occasionally nap through your workout, arrive late to yoga or even have to cancel a recreational game. That’s okay! Don’t beat yourself up over it; instead, reaffirm yourself by preparing a workout for the following day.
  • Don’t Forget the Treats – Did you accomplish your workout? Celebrate with a good ol’ speech to yourself, a nice meal or by letting your friends in on your joy!
  • Patience is a Virtue – Sometimes you’ll feel like anything is a drag. Don’t sweat it. It’s important to be patient with yourself and keep trying when things don’t work out.

Talk to Us

Sometimes when all is said and done, talking to someone if you feel if your efforts aren’t going anywhere can be incredibly helpful. Our licensed psychologists in Tampa are more than ready to sit with you and hear your story. Contact us today to learn more about beating your procrastination!

About Rice Psychology

Rice Psychology Group is home to a team of psychologists who work tirelessly to help adults, adolescents and children deal with their issues. Whether you’re currently dealing with depression, going through a divorce or fighting an issue you just can’t understand, know that our Tampa psychologists are here to help.

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