50+ Procrastination Statistics and Facts [2024]

November 7, 2023 0 Comments

Do you often put off work and miss deadlines? After feeling a little guilty, you again pushed the task for tomorrow. Let me guess, you even procrastinate the next day. 

You wanted to complete the task but it is still hanging undone.

Procrastinating Statistics suggest you are not alone. Welcome to the club of procrastinators!

Procrastination is common among people of all age groups and societies. A survey results that 

88% of people procrastinate for at least one hour per day

20% of adults are chronic procrastinators while 80-95% of college students procrastinate occasionally in their studies.

Let’s dive deeper into Procrastination Statistics to understand how it is delaying dreams.

  1. 20% of men and women in the US are chronic procrastinators. [12]
  2. One-third of daily activities are preoccupied by Procrastination in student life. [4]
  3. A 2015 research found a link between chronic procrastination and hypertension, heart disease, and cardiovascular illness.
  4. An average employee loses approx. $8,875 annually due to procrastination. [11]
  5. 44% of students are worried about their content consumption over the internet to procrastinate. [7]
  6. According to a YouGov poll, people procrastinate for around 55 days per year!
  7. People generally characterize procrastination as a negative behavior, and over 95% of procrastinators wish to reduce it. [4]
people spend around 55 days per year in procrastination

Demographic Statistics about Procrastination 

Who are Procrastinators?

Procrastination is not limited to age group and location.

It affects about 20%–30% of the adult population.

How much procrastination prevails in school students?

Students are highly affected by their procrastinating habits. All domains of their lives including academic, social, and emotional suffer due to procrastination. 

Here is what statistics say about Procrastination in School students:

School StudentsDelay
46%Regularly on writing term sheets
30%Submitting weekly assignments
28%Studying for exams
23%Attendance tasks
11%Administrative tasks
10%General school activities

One-third of daily activities are preoccupied with Procrastination in student life. [4]

Procrastination in College Students

Talking about college students specifically, 95% are chronic procrastinators. While 86% of school students procrastinate occasionally. [5]

95% of college students are chronic procrastinators

Procrastination in Workspace

Stuck with the same boring PPT again?

Trying to avoid Boss because you have no new ideas for the next project? 

We all have been there!

Workspace procrastination is quite common.

88% of workers admitted they procrastinate at least one hour per day. [10]

Women tend to procrastinate less than men.

If women procrastinated the same as men, there should be 1.5 million fewer women in full-time employment in the US alone.  [9]

Basex’s recent study suggests that “the cost of unnecessary interruptions” in terms of lost productivity and innovation is a staggering $650 billion. That’s nearly 1% of the entire world’s GDP! [13]

Reasons of Workspace Procrastination:

  • Lower salaries
  • Higher unemployment rates
  • Lack of appreciation and worth
  • Low priority tasks

Have you ever wondered how procrastination affects business growth?

80% of employees earn a salary and 76% of entrepreneurs spend 1 to 4 hours procrastinating on any given day. [9]

Procrastinating 3 hours per day costs businesses $15,000 annually for a $40,000 salaried worker.

the cost of unnecessary interruptions

Why do People Procrastinate?

Want to know the reasons behind your delaying work and missing deadlines?

  1. Laziness and tiredness: These are the main sources of procrastination. 

People do not start a task because they are too lazy to work. 

28% of students put off studies because they “Do not feel like it”. [4]

  1. Fear of failure: People may put off work due to fear of failure. 

People tend to avoid difficult or uncomfortable tasks. 

Almost 10% of people give fear of failure as a reason for procrastination.

The brain becomes habitual of avoiding and we often fall into this pattern.

  1. Resentment: 

This is a major cause of procrastination among school students. 20% resent the people who set deadlines for them.

They rebelled against parents and teachers because they were bound to study instead of watching their favorite cartoons and playing. Hilarious, right!!

This is not the case with college students with less than 5% indicating the cause.

  1. Sensation seeking: People like the sensation of completing a task at the last minute. 

6.4% of students look forward to the excitement of finishing work at the last moment.

Remember the adrenaline rush, when you click on the form submit button in the very last minutes. 

  1. Lack of time management skills is also a cause of procrastination. 

We often focus too much on one task and lose track of time. Other tasks suffer due to this. 

common reasons of procrastination

How does Technology affect Procrastination?

Procrastination is rising among people due to the increment in the use of the internet and social media platforms. 

74% of people confirm that Social Media leads to procrastination. [6]

64% of people report that Social Media hinders concentration while studying.

14% blame television for distraction and delay.

Stats Prove Procrastination is Delaying Success 

Procrastination is a major reason for failure. 

Delaying day-to-day activities builds a self-destructive behavior, from missing assignment deadlines to putting off work. Ultimately delaying your dreams and success.

How does procrastination affect your long-term goals?

Some people may procrastinate occasionally while others make a habit out of it. 

It decreases the productivity of individuals. 

Let’s understand types of procrastination based on the time period.

Chronic Procrastination: It refers to consistently avoiding tasks and putting off deadlines, even ignoring the negative consequences. 

About 20% of adults are chronic procrastinators.

Acute Procrastination: It refers to delaying tasks for a short period of time. Acute procrastination is relatively common and unharmful

Impacts of Procrastination on Health

What are the different types of Procrastinators based on Impacts on Health?

procrastinators based on impacts on health
  1. 24.93% of people are mild procrastinators and rarely procrastinate with no major side effects in their daily lives. [2] 
  2. 27.89% of people are average procrastinators, who procrastinate occasionally, putting off work and missing deadlines.
  3. 21.69% of people are severe procrastinators and spend the whole day with zero productivity.
  4. 11.55% of people are primarily depressed procrastinators, suffering from depression, feel anxious and restless.
  5. 13.94% of people are well-adjusted procrastinators, they procrastinate regularly without any negative health impacts.

Effects of Procrastination on Mental Health

ADHD

People hyperfocus on tasks they feel comfortable doing and neglect the ones that they find tedious. 

Students underlying this condition face concentration issues. [8]

Procrastination Depression Cycle

Procrastinators end up in a self handicap cycle.

Procrastination may result in stress, anxiety, and depression.

94% of procrastinators confirmed that there is a significant decline in their happiness due to delayed tasks. [8]

Bedtime Procrastination

Have you heard people saying, “I did not sleep well  last night because I was enjoying some leisure time after the heavy workday?”

This is quite common, right? And we have no clue how harmful this practice is.

Sacrificing sleep for leisure time because we cannot find time for ourselves throughout the day is called Revenge Bedtime Procrastination. 

It results in sleep deprivation and mental and physical health issues. It may lead to long-term consequences on our emotional health. 

Nearly 40% of people have had sleeping problems due to Sleep Procrastination during the Covid. [7]

Positive Facts about Procrastination

The Good news is that procrastination is not all about side effects and drawbacks. 

Plus points of procrastination include:

  • A lazy mind is a goldmine of creativity. 
  • Procrastination gives more time to discover innovative and creative solutions. 
  • It enhances last-minute productivity.
  • It improves decision-making. 
  • We get enough time to think and reflect. Beware of overthinking, though!

Concerning Procrastination Statistics

40% of people procrastinated sleep during covid
  1. Alarming Social Media usage and unconscious content consumption increases Procrastination. [6]
  2. Algorithms of YouTube, Snapchat, Reels, or shorts are set to keep you engaged there. Resulting in low productivity and delayed deadlines.
  3. 40% of people are suffering from financial losses due to procrastination. [9]
  4. In the 1970s, only 5% of people were chronic procrastinators, but that number has risen to 20% today. [12]
  5. Procrastination damages self-esteem, resulting in a lack of motivation and confidence.
  6. Nearly 40% of people even Procrastinated Sleep during the Covid. [7]

FAQs about Procrastination

How long does a person procrastinate before beginning a task, in general?

Usually, a person wastes 55 days per year in procrastinating.

A normal working person procrastinates at least one hour per day.

How common is Procrastination?

Procrastination is common in adults. It affects about 20%–30% of the adult population. They are chronic procrastinators while about 50% of adults admit they procrastinate from time to time.

How many people have confirmed that they are procrastinators?

People procrastinate at various rates.

A survey done on 1,000 adults in the UK led to the following results:

  • 6% claim they never procrastinate,
  • 4% admit to procrastinating rarely,
  • 4% do so sometimes,
  • 1% do so often,
  • 5% procrastinate daily.

How to get rid of Procrastination?

While specific steps may differ for everyone depending on their situation. 

The following are basic steps to be taken to break free from procrastination:

  • Eliminate distractions. It can be mobile phones, televisions, or any other device or activity you usually procrastinate for.
  • Set goals. It will help you to regain your focus if you lose track of time.
  • Break down bulking tasks into smaller segments. Some tasks may be overwhelming, but the key is to make them manageable. 

How much Procrastination is normal?

Procrastination is a part of human nature and is not all negative. 

Numberber of hours considered normal for procrastinators highly depends on the individual. While extreme is always bad, one can procrastinate on low-priority tasks occasionally. 

Usually, Students procrastinate more than working people, which is normal.

Summary

Procrastination is common but this does not imply it is good. While a little procrastination does not bring much harm, chronic procrastination deteriorates mental, physical, and emotional health. 

Procrastinators have risen to 20% today because of an increment in the use of the internet and unhealthy consumption of social media content during COVID-19.

88% of the working population procrastinate for at least one hour per day

20% of adults are chronic procrastinators while 80-95% of college students procrastinate occasionally in their studies.

Procrastination results in low productivity, lack of motivation, laziness, stress, anxiety, and even depression. Try to get rid of chronic procrastination by building healthy habits.  One may consider professional help or therapy if the condition worsens.

It is vital to break free from chronic procrastination to achieve dreams and live a fulfilling life.

Sources

  1. Pearson. 80-95% of college students procrastinate.
  2. Doi. Differentiating Procrastinators from Each Other: A Cluster Analysis
  3. APA Psycnet. Academic Procrastination: Frequency and Cognitive-Behavioural Corelates
  4. APA Psycnet. Nature of Procrastination
  5. National University. Helping Students Overcome Procrastination.
  6. Core.ac.uk. Procrastination on Social Networks: Types and Triggers
  7. Sleep Foundation. Revenge Bedtime Procrastination.
  8. Frontiers. Procrastination: Differentiating severe cases
  9. Online Library. Wiley. Procrastination’s Impact on the Workplace
  10. Darius Forous. Procrastination Study
  11. National Library of Medicine. Procrastination in Daily Working Life
  12. APA. Psychology of Procrastination
  13. NYTimes. Is Information Overload a $650 Billion Drag on the Economy?
  14. National Library of Medicine. General and Life-Domain Procrastination in Highly Educated Adults in Israel

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