Procrastination Quotes that Inspire You to Act [NOW!]

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Do you procrastinate sometimes?

I do!

I procrastinate so much that it’s probably the most important limitation I have in my professional life.

Procrastination has been with mankind for thousands of years. We just can’t seem to get a handle on it.

procrastination quotes

One of the main reasons behind it is that we try to avoid the negative feelings associated with the big task we must do. Instead, we do something else, that is easier. The easier task can be a real productive thing, but we should focus on the big task.

Quick tip: break the big task into manageable chunks.
For example, you can use the Pomodoro technique.

But if you need some motivation, then I created a collection of the most insightful quotes about procrastination. Great men and women in history have had a lot to say about procrastination. Almost everybody who has ever achieved greatness has something to say about the topic. Following are the famous quotes about procrastination from writers, scientists, military, entrepreneurs, and many others.

You can be a procrastinator and still become great at what you do.

Find motivation in those procrastination quotes. Maybe they will help you break out of your procrastination cycle and accomplish the task you need to do.

I have created procrastination quotes images that you can print out or share with your friends.

Do it now!

Now is the right time. Start! Take the smallest of steps to get the momentum going. When you start your brain will accept the situation and will reach even your most audacious goals. Read more about How to Stop Procrastinating.

procrastination quotes Jefferson

Never put off for tomorrow, what you can do today. ~ Thomas Jefferson

  • The really happy people are those who have broken the chains of procrastination, those who find satisfaction in doing the job at hand. They’re full of eagerness, zest, productivity. You can be, too. – Norman Vincent Peale
  • The habit of always putting off an experience until you can afford it, or until the time is right, or until you know how to do it is one of the greatest burglars of joy. Be deliberate, but once you’ve made up your mind–jump in. – Charles R. Swindoll
  • Never do tomorrow what you can do today. Procrastination is the thief of time. – Charles Dickens

procrastination quotes james

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

  • It is easier to resist at the beginning than at the end. – Leonardo da Vinci
  • You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today. – Abraham Lincoln
  • What may be done at any time will be done at no time. – Scottish Proverb

procrastination quotes anonymous

The best way to get something done is to begin. ~ Anonymous

  • Somebody should tell us, right at the start of our lives, that we are dying. Then we might live life to the limit, every minute of every day. Do it! I say. Whatever you want to do, do it now! There are only so many tomorrows. – Michael Landon
  • Whatever you want to do, do it now! There are only so many tomorrows. – Michael Landon
  • Often just by taking action, by doing something about the situation can relieve the stress and help correct the situation. – Catherine Pulsifer

Funny procrastination quotes

You have to have some spice in your life. Here are the quotes about procrastination that may make you laugh. Remember that the best way to stop procrastinating is to forgive yourself and start. Read what funny procrastination quotes have others found in their unending battle with procrastination.

procrastination quotes Twain

Never put off till tomorrow what may be done day after tomorrow just as well. ~ Mark Twain

  • You can’t just turn on creativity like a faucet. You have to be in the right mood. What mood is that? Last-minute panic. – Bill Watterson
  • If it weren’t for the last minute, nothing would get done. – Rita Mae Brown
  • One of the greatest labor-saving inventions of today is tomorrow. – Vincent T. Foss
  • The two rules of procrastination: 1) Do it today. 2) Tomorrow will be today tomorrow. – Author Unknown

procrastination quotes proverb

Tomorrow is often the busiest day of the week. ~ Spanish Proverb

  • Anyone can do any amount of work, provided it isn’t the work he is supposed to be doing at that moment – Robert Benchley
  • Procrastination is like masturbation. At first, it feels good, but in the end, you’re only screwing yourself. – Author unknown, possibly from Monty Python?
  • How does a project get to be a year behind schedule? One day at a time. – Fred Brooks

procrastination quotes cornyn-selby

A perfect method for adding drama to life is to wait until the deadline looms large. ~ Alyce P. Cornyn-Selby

  • Procrastination is, hands down, our favorite form of self-sabotage. – Alyce P. Cornyn-Selby
  • The least productive people are usually the ones who are most in favor of holding meetings. – Thomas Sowell

We find procrastination quotes funny because it hurts. Everybody has had problems with procrastination.

Read next:  Learn Every Day 👩‍🎓 [3 Ways to Improve Yourself in 2022]

Time lost to procrastination

If you have to do something, then you should not waste time. Your competition can blow right past you while you hesitate.

procrastination quotes Lamb

A year from now you may wish you had started today. ~ Karen Lamb

  • Begin doing what you want to do now. We are not living in eternity. We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand—and melting like a snowflake. – Francis Bacon
  • Take time to deliberate; but when the time for action arrives, stop thinking and go in. – Napoleon Bonaparte
  • Time wasted is existence; used is life. – Edward Young

procrastination quotes trotman

The greatest amount of wasted time is the time not getting started. ~ Dawson Trotman

  • You may delay, but time will not, and lost time is never found again. ~ Benjamin Franklin
  • Things may come to those who wait, but only the things left by those who hustle. ~ Abraham Lincoln

Often, when procrastinating, you don’t just sit there. You do something, but it’s not what you should do. Read why you need to stop wasting time on low-value activities.

Speed of doing things

Our lives have a need for speed. When you procrastinate, your speed is zero. Get going! Take baby steps. It doesn’t matter how fast you go, it’s always faster than procrastination.

procrastination quotes Godfrey

Even if you’re on the right track – you’ll get run over if you just sit there. ~ Arthur Godfrey

  • In a moment of decision, the best thing you can do is the right thing to do, the next best thing is the wrong thing, and the worst thing you can do is nothing. – Theodore Roosevelt
  • The only difference between success and failure is the ability to take action. – Alexandre Graham Bell
  • During a very busy life I have often been asked, “How did you manage to do it all?” The answer is very simple. It is because I did everything promptly. – Richard Tangye

Perfectionism and procrastination quotes

There will never be a time when everything is just right. Start now and in one minute you are closer to perfection than you are before you start. Real creators ship. Procrastination is like a prison where you can see how others get results but you only sit there.

procrastination quotes Peale

If you put off everything till you’re sure of it, you’ll never get anything done. ~ Norman Vincent Peale

  • If we wait for the moment when everything, absolutely everything is ready, we shall never begin. – Ivan Sergeyevich Turgenev
  • Waiting is a trap. There will always be reasons to wait – The truth is, there are only two things in life, reasons and results, and reasons simply don’t count. – Robert Anthony
  • To do anything in this world worth doing, we must not stand back shivering and thinking of the cold and danger but jump in and scramble through as well as we can. – Syndey Smith

procrastination quotes king

Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work. ~ Stephen King

  • Don’t wait for someone to take you under their wing. Find a good wing and climb up underneath it. – Frank C. Bucaro
  • Often greater risk is involved in postponement than in making a wrong decision. – Harry A. Hopf
  • We are so scared of being judged that we look for every excuse to procrastinate. – Erica Jong
  • A primary reason people don’t do new things is because they want to do them perfectly – first time. It’s completely irrational, impractical, not workable – and yet, it’s how most people run their lives. It’s called The Perfection Syndrome – Peter McWlliams and John-Roger
  • It was my fear of failure that first kept me from attempting the master work. Now, I’m beginning what I could have started ten years ago. But I’m happy at least that I didn’t wait twenty years. – Paulo Coelho

Motivation and habits

After reading the quotes on procrastination from some of the top performers in history, start doing what you must do. If you don’t feel like it then to it for 5 minutes. 5 minutes is OK to start with. But tomorrow do it again for 5 minutes. Keep moving and at some point, do it for 6 minutes and then seven.

The only thing you must do is keep doing what you have to do.

You are moving in the right direction!

You are increasing your willpower!

You are building a habit that will be with you for the rest of your life!

Just don’t stop!

procrastination-quotes Rohn

Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going. ~ Jim Rohn

  • There is nothing so fatal to character as half-finished tasks. – David Lloyd George
  • Begin while others are procrastinating. Work while others are wishing. – William Arthur Ward
  • Perhaps the most valuable result of education is the ability to make yourself do the thing you have to do, when it ought to be done, whether you like it or not. – Thomas Huxley
Read next:  How to Act Now (and Build Momentum) in 2021

procrastination quotes Seneca

It is not because things are difficult that we do not dare, it is because we do not dare that they are difficult. ~ Seneca

  • If you procrastinate when faced with a big difficult problem… break the problem into parts, and handle one part at a time. – Robert Collier
  • Following-through is the only thing that separates dreamers from people that accomplish great things. – Gene Hayden
  • There is nothing so fatal to character as half-finished tasks. – David Lloyd George
  • He who every morning plans the transactions of that day and follows that plan carries a thread that will guide him through the labyrinth of the busiest life. – Victor Hugo
  • The really happy people are those who have broken the chains of procrastination, those who find satisfaction in doing the job at hand. They’re full of eagerness, zest, productivity. You can be, too. – Norman Vincent Peale

Do it later

In some cases, it’s a good thing to procrastinate. You can find funny quotes about procrastination that state when you do something at the last minute then you are older and therefore wiser.

That, of course, is a joke.

But in some cases, great artists have taken years to complete their masterworks. For example, Leonardo da Vinci and Mona Lisa. It took him more than a decade to complete it. But during that time he probably developed new ideas and techniques that helped to make that painting what it is today.

I spent more than a year completing this blog post. Even collecting information for the article about wasting time and overcoming procrastination quotes didn’t help.

But here we are, I hope you find my collection of anti-procrastination quotes helpful and share it with a friend who needs it.

  • Anything worth putting off is worth abandoning altogether. – Epictetus
  • Regret for the things we did can be tempered by time; it is regret for the things we did not do that is inconsolable. – Sydney Harris

Miscellaneous procrastination quotes

procrastination quotes Kiam

Procrastination is opportunity’s natural assassin. ~ Victor Kiam

  • If you have goals and procrastination you have nothing. If you have goals and you take action, you will have anything you want. – Thomas J. Vilord
  • You can’t get much done in life if you only work on the days when you feel good. – Jerry West
  • He who begun has half done. Dare to be wise; begin. – Horace
  • Just Do It – Nike

procrastination quotes troly-curtin

Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time. ~ Marthe Troly-Curtin

  • Putting off an easy thing makes it hard and putting off a hard one makes it impossible. – George H. Lorimer
  • Don’t put off for tomorrow what you can do today because if you enjoy it today, you can do it again tomorrow. – James A. Michener
  • Your mind is for having ideas, not holding them. – David Allen
  • You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today. – Abraham Lincoln

You can find a selection of willpower quotes to help you get started.

Procrastination definition

Procrastination means avoiding a task that needs to be done by a certain deadline. It’s a delay of starting or finishing a task despite knowing it might have negative consequences. It’s a common experience involving delay in everyday chores or even putting off critical tasks, for example, attending an appointment, submitting a job report, academic assignment, or broaching a stressful issue with a partner.

The most prominent explanation draws upon “Intemporal discounting, task averseness and certain personality traits such as indecisiveness and distractibility” as the common causes of procrastination.

Books on Procrastination

  1. Eat That Frog!: 21 Great Ways to Stop Procrastinating and Get More Done in Less Time by Brian Tracy
  2. The Anti-Procrastination Habit by Steve Scott
  3. Solving the Procrastination Puzzle: A Concise Guide to Strategies for Change by Timothy A. Pychyl
  4. The Procrastination Equation: How to Stop Putting Things Off and Start Getting Stuff Done by Piers Steel
  5. The Now Habit: A Strategic Program for Overcoming Procrastination and Enjoying Guilt-Free Play by Dr. Neil Fiore
  6. Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World by Cal Newport
  7. Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity by David Allen
  8. The Slight Edge: Turning Simple Disciplines into Massive Success and Happiness by Jeff Olson

Now it’s your turn

Start doing whatever you have put off. Find out how acting now will improve your life.

I have procrastinated on some tasks for years. Literally, I have an uncompleted task I’m working on right now that I started more than 3 years ago. And then there are the tasks that I simply threw out as they were no longer relevant because I procrastinated so long.

The first step is to forgive yourself. You are doing it because the task is hard. Don’t beat yourself up, encourage yourself to get started and keep moving.

Write in the comments what has made you procrastinate. How long have you been procrastinating?

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This Post Has One Comment

  1. Andy Rina

    This is a great selection of quotes. Not a quote but an idea that you should follow is that whenever you find yourself procrastinating and feel bad about it, forgive yourself and make a new plan. If your plans have changed and the original deadlines don’t work anymore then move the deadlines to a realistic date. If someone is depending on your work, let them know what the new date is.

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Priit Kallas

Founder of I created FixWillpower to help you reach your goals. I have struggled my entire life to be consistent and avoid procrastination. The goal is to have a good life, do the things you love and get your results with minimum effort. FixWillpower website is about how I create motivation and productivity in my life. I write about the tools and techniques, best books, scientific research, and everything else that helps you move faster and stay on track. Minimum effort doesn’t mean slacking off. Minimum effort is about effectiveness and productivity. If there is a way to reach a goal in a shorter time or with less exertion, then you should use that. I will help you be smarter and reach goals faster. About FixWillpower