Quotes About Procrastination: Break the Habit

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Procrastination is the biggest obstacle to success.

As I say this, I must admit that I’m guilty of it. I have this bad habit of postponing action on tasks that needed to be done yesterday, or a week or month ago. That’s why quotes about procrastination are very useful. I read them to motivate me into writing that article, making that important phone call, or doing personal and social tasks that have been beckoning to me for action.

If you’re anything like me, you probably make all kinds of excuses to delay pursuing your plans. But what good are plans if they stay on the blueprint indefinitely?  That said, here are procrastination quotes to help you overcome your penchant for putting things off until later. Some of them resonate with me so much that I make them my mantra for when I’m meditating.

So, in no particular order, these are favorite quotes about procrastination that I turn to when I need that extra push.

” The most pernicious aspect of procrastination is that it can become a habit. We don’t just put off our lives today; we put them off till our deathbed.

– Steven Pressfield, American author

Procrastination is one of the most common and deadliest of diseases and its toll on success and happiness heavy.

Wayne Gretzsy, NHL Hall of Famer

You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.

Abraham Lincoln

Persistence is very important. You should not give up until you are forced to give up.

Elon Musk

The only difference between success and failure is the ability to take action.

Alexander Graham Bell

You don’t have to see the whole staircase. Just take the first step.

Martin Luther King, Jr.
one step at a time

Take time to deliberate; but when the time for action arrives, stop thinking and go in.

Napoleon Bonaparte

Much of the stress that people feel doesn’t come from having too much to do. It comes from not finishing what they started.

David Allen, productivity consultant

If you have goals and procrastination, you have nothing. If you have goals and you take action, you will have anything you wnat.

Thomas J. Vilord, financial adviser

Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task.

William James, 19th century philosopher

How to break the habit of procrastination:

Prioritize duties or projects.


When you’re inundated with an endless list of tasks all clamouring for your attention and action, it can get overwhelming. You don’t know which one to do first or where to start, and procrastination becomes the order of the day. To overcome this state, make a list of what you have to do and rank them according to priority. Then focus on the task at hand before proceeding to the next.

You’ll find that when you’ve completed a project, it gives you a feeling of accomplishment and inspires you to go on to the next task.

Create a purpose for a task.

Purposes give you an incentive to act instead of procrastinating on a project or task. What do you get out of completing a project? Keep your purpose in mind. If you’re a freelancer, a task done as scheduled means more time for other projects and that equates to more money earned to pay the bills and pursue your interests. For regular workers, it’s points for good performance and a probable step up the corporate ladder.

Make a “Didn’t Do” list.


Review your daily/weekly/monthly to-do list and take note of the activities you didn’t do as scheduled. They belong on your “didn’t do” list. Highlight the repeaters, those tasks that always appear because they remain undone, and prioritize them, then plan to accomplish one every week until you have crossed out everything in the list.

Sometimes, don’t think of the big picture.

I know…this is contrary to what management trainers and life coaches advise. But, as with detail-thinking, looking at the big picture can lead to procrastination when you are engulfed by anxiety and fear of not being able to achieve the end goal.

If you’re tasked to come up with a powerful strategic plan within a certain time frame, don’t think of the project in its entirety. Instead, break down the plan in chunks and accomplish them in sequential order. Set milestones to motivate you and give you a sense of achievement.

Recall your favorite quotes on procrastination.

quotes on procrastination

Quotes become such because they strike a chord deep within us. They put into words what we think and feel. Quotes on procrastination push and motivate us into action because they inspire us and open our minds to the consequences of putting off tasks and projects for another day.

Keep a list of the procrastination quotes most meaningful to you. It could be in your notes on your phone or on pen and paper. Read them when you feel like you’re not getting anywhere with what you’re doing.

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