In psychology there is a principle known as avoidance. It is what we do to keep from facing fear. Fear of what? Often times it is fear of the unknown. Avoidance can also manifest itself as fear of failure or of previously harmful or emotionally stressful situations. It is in the course of avoidance that procrastination is practiced.

It is very interesting to study human behavior, to look into motivation and why we do what we do, why we steer clear of certain situations and why we cling to others. Procrastination is definitely one of those fascinating things I have always wondered about, because I do it all the time!

I would like to spend a minute with all you avoiders out there and share with you why I do not think it is a good idea to procrastinate your online psychology degree. By doing so you risk the chance of never returning to finish what you started, of harboring fear or avoidance in your life and perhaps one of the most practical reasons, you might just stay stuck if you do not move forward.

Let us look at these reasons for not procrastinating one at a time. First, the chance of never returning, this one is for those who have looked into getting a degree or have started and are currently taking a break. Many a student has said in the midst of times difficult studies, “I’ll go back later when I have time.” The problem is, so often as life progresses for most, time gets tighter, not looser.

Unless you have a specific plan of returning, this may just be the rationalization that frees you from the classroom, but also your degree. One helpful thing to remember is, if your class load is too overwhelming you may look into tutoring, study groups or even in scaling back to take just what you can handle. It does no good to drive yourself into the ground when a degree is meant to enhance your life. While there is sacrifice that is required, there is also wisdom in not biting off more than you can chew.

Second, fear has a way of returning when we avoid things that frighten us. It may not return in the form of fear of failing out of your online classes, but it could very likely rear its head in other areas of your life. Psychologists use a technique when curing phobias known as exposure therapy. It is based around the idea that most things we fear have little ground in reality. We can paint in our mind a much dire picture than really exists and as our fear becomes centered around the illusion in our minds we react to it as if it really were a real danger or threat. Our body and mind cannot tell the difference. Face your fears and learn that there is really nothing to fear, but fear itself.

Last, and sometimes connected to fear, but often more tied to the principle of momentum, is that when we get too comfortable in any stage of our lives it is often difficult to make changes. We can settle in and become lazy as it were and loose our forward momentum. Many finish schooling and almost in an effort to rebel cut off their momentum, but those who commit themselves to always learning find that when new opportunities come alone they are much more ready to jump on them.

Do not procrastinate getting your online psych degree. You will serve yourself much more by facing your fears, finishing what you start and in keeping a forward moving momentum.

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