Entrepreneurs: Why You should Procrastinate Once in a While

The common advice for entrepreneurship is: Do not procrastinate. But I beg to differ; I suggest you to stop working once in a while in your entrepreneurial journey. Why should you do so?

Entrepreneurs are getting used to work 18/7. Many entrepreneurs want to do things with urgency – “I want it done now” is the typical attitude for entrepreneurs.

It’s only natural, really. We don’t want to lose opportunities by procrastinating. Delaying things mean losing potentially lucrative business opportunities.

However – at times – we do need to delay or postpone things. We need to shout “TIMEOUT!!!” and just… stop working for a while.

Despite against the common sense, escaping from your routine and procrastinate – when done right – can be beneficial…

Schedules turn you into a robot; procrastination turns you into a human again

You or your assistant schedules things to do ahead, because you know planning is everything. However, in my opinion, plans can turn you into a robot… and plans will turn your entrepreneurial journey into yet-another-job-you-create-yourself.

“This is done; what next; that is done; next!” You are becoming a robot or a program with lines of codes executed after a certain task done. And so on.

You need to delay things in your schedule for once; take a deep breath, or simply take a trip with your family and friends… there is more to live than building your business.

Procrastinating allows you to take bird’s-eye view on your business

While many others just think but never do anything (procrastinate,) us entrepreneurs often work so hard and so focused that we don’t really know what’s going on with our business; we never actually think creatively about our business.

Procrastinating allows you to – by habit – stop doing things when you like it. You can actually be more productive by procrastinating than by being diligent and punctual.

When you stop working on your daily business tasks deliberately, you can start seeing what you normally don’t see in your business – then you can strategise better.

Procrastination allows you to recharge

Entrepreneurial burnout is a result of high-pressure on yourself. You are overwhelmed by your daily tasks as a result of your no-procrastination rule. So, what’s good is working hard if the impact is a stressful and anxious business owner?

You’ve got to stop working once in a while to allow you to gather yourself up. When you stop doing your “important” tasks, you relieve some pressures off yourself and “recharge” your mind and emotional tank.

Early birds don’t always get the worm

Against the commonly accepted notion that early birds get the worm, in real life early birds don’t always get it.

Early birds in entrepreneurship are often those who are doing trials and errors to find what works for them.

“Late birds” are observing from afar, learning what works and what won’t works, and then they can strategise accordingly. In fact, this type of entrepreneurs adopt: “observe, copy, modify” strategy: Learning what works and make it better.

So, are you telling me to be a lazy person?

No, not at all! What I’m telling you is to stop working IN your business and start working ON your business.

For entrepreneurs who love working IN their business…

When you work IN your business 18 hours a day, 7 days a week, you are naturally viewed as a hard worker who never procrastinate.

To me, working IN your business is a waste of time, money and energy. You can be successful this way, but when you stop working, so does your business. You are your business and your business is you.

For entrepreneurs who love working ON their business…

When you work ON your business intensely, you often do things considered as being lazy or procrastinating: You come to your office late and in unpredictable times; in fact, you probably never set your foot in your store or office, but you have done plenty of “behind the scene” activities in growing your business: Social media marketing, lobbying, networking, etc.

But doing so, you can delegate better; doing so, you can observe things better. Ultimately, your business might no longer need your physical presence.

Working ON your business allows you to take on other opportunities, as you have leveraged your resources well.

So, you see – procrastination is not that bad after all… but as everything in live, overdone some things might lead to problems. So, do procrastinate with care :)

Ivan Widjaya
Productive procrastination