In the United States, 20-25% of men and women are classified as chronic procrastinators, indication of which such behavior is a large problem. Chronic behavioral procrastination has been categorized into two categories: arousal procrastination and avoidant procrastination. Arousal procrastination encompasses the idea of delaying for the sake of excitement and ridding boredom and engaging the belief of “working better under pressure”. Avoidant procrastination includes the idea of deferring tasks due to fear of incompetence or even success.
Previous studies have linked procrastination to personality traits such as “low states of self confidence and self-esteem and high states of depression, neurosis, self-awareness, social anxiety, forgetfulness, disorganization, noncompetitiveness, dysfunctional impulsivity, behavioral rigidity, and lack of energy”. With such a link, procrastinators are also found to have “poor task performance”. Researchers believe that such consequences of dilatory behavior will instill a sense of regret. In this study, researchers hope to find the relationship between procrastination and regrets in life.
II. Methods On a website that is a dominant search result for “procrastination” on Google, subjects were incited to take the following surveys: The Adult Inventory of Procrastination (AIP), The General Procrastination Scale (GP), and the Life Domain Regret (LDR) Inventory. The AIP has 15 items and is based on a 5-point Likert scale with the range of 1= strongly disagree to 5= strongly agree. The AIP measures avoidant procrastination. The GP Scale has 20 items and also is based on a 5-point Likert scale with a range of 1= not true of me to 5= very true of me.
The GP scale is associated with measuring arousal procrastination. The LDR inventory has 12 life domain areas in which participants indicate the regret felt toward each item. The scale ranges from 1= a little regret to 5= a lot of regret. The surveys included demographic items. The surveys were posted for 8 weeks and pilot testing shows that approximately 20 minutes were required to complete the entire survey. The participants composed of 2,887 adults (1,776 women and 1,111 men). The average age of the subjects was 38. 63 years. The range of ages were from 25-80 years old.
Of the participants, 82. 4% stated they were Caucasian, 79. 5% stated to be educated with at least an undergraduate degree, 64. 4% reside in suburban areas, 56. 4% were employed full time, and the average annual income was $61,739. 25. 46. 7% claimed to be single. III. Results and Discussion First, researchers found that arousal procrastination tendencies had a positive relation to all life domains except for spirituality. Avoidant procrastination tendencies had a positive relation to most life domains except for community service, parenting, family interactions, and spiritual growth.
Afterward, the researchers identified who among the participants were “pure types”, those who, by score, were strictly arousal procrastinators, avoidant procrastinators, or nonprocrastinators. They resulted in having 386 chronic arousal procrastinators (245 women, 141 men), 220 chronic avoidant procrastinators (133 women, 87 men), and 215 nonprocrastinators (134 women, 81 men). Through chi-square analysis, the proportions of women to men in each group are similar to the original total sample size. Further analyses are based on the new sample of “pure types”.
When all three procrastination types are compared, it is found that there were no significant differences in regret among the life domains of career, romance, spirituality, and self improvement. Nonprocrastinators had significantly less regret than both arousal and avoidant procrastinators in the life domains of education, family, finances, friends, and health. Within those five domains, arousal and avoidant procrastinators held no significant difference between each other in regret. Arousal procrastinators held significantly more regret than nonprocrastinators in the domains of community service and leisure activities.
In the life domain of parenting, nonprocrastinators held significantly less regret than avoidant procrastinators and avoidant procrastinators held significantly less regret than arousal procrastinators. According to the data, researchers concluded that avoidant procrastinators and arousal procrastinators share a similar sense of regret among many of the 12 life domains presented. Nonprocrastinators, however, express a significantly less amount of regret among the 12 life domains compared to the arousal and avoidant procrastinators.
In detail, researchers were presented with surprisiing results. About 50% of nonprocrastinators stated to have a Bachelor’s and/or Master’s degree while 56. 6% of both procrastinator types stated the same. However, 42% of procrastinators claimed to be students and only 16. 7% of nonprocrastinators were students. There were also more procrastinators with a high school diploma or less than nonprocrastinators. The percentages indicate that procrastinators may have more regret in not gaining higher education which is why many are still students.
In previous research, it seems that procrastinators and nonprocrastinators generally have the same social network size. However, procrastinators seemed to display more regret in the fields of social relations. This indicates that perhaps the regret felt toward these categories are more based on the relationship qualities. Such a topic can be further explored. It is also notable that nonprocrastinators had an annual income average of $69. 648 and procrastinators had an annual income of less that $57,959. Procrastinators expressed regret toward finances more than nonprocrastinators.
Both procrastinator types showed more regret toward health and avoiding illnesses than nonprocrastinators. The procrastinators also had greater regrets in the domains of community service and leisure time activities. This seems to indicate that those who deal with more illness may not enjoy personal life as much and may not know how to serve their community effectively. Procrastinators and nonprocrastinators did not show any significant differences in regret toward the domains of career, romance, spirituality, and self improvement.
Research shows that procrastinators are common among corporate, white collared workers. This may indicate that there may be more procrastinators or nonprocrastinators in specific career fields. The study overall is simple and has opened new hypothesis for possible future case studies. The study is limited because it is collectively from an online survey. No interaction with the subjects were available. Overall, chronic arousal and chronic avoidant procrastinators displayed more regret in the 12 life domains presented compared to nonprocrastinators.
IV. My Thoughts This study fits surveying research. The researchers utilized a series of questions and based the results off of feedback. I believe that my topic of research can possibly be found in Chapter 10: Motivation and Emotion. The procrastinators tend to lack motivation and have many negative personality variables. Nonprocrastinaors seem to the those who are more motivated to stay on task and exceed in having not as many regrets. This study can possibly placed on page 397 where drive and incentive theories are discussed.