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Why Do We Procrastinate on Our Health?

It’s not uncommon for us to know that we have a problem, with drugs, alcohol, another substance, or an addictive behavior or relationship, but avoid dealing with it. We are aware that we have a problem but procrastinate on our health. We postpone making a therapy appointment, researching treatment centers or reaching out for help. We delay having to face the issue. Why do we do this?

Deep down we’re scared. The problems that have been accumulating because of our addictions are scary and overwhelming. We’re afraid of losing the people we love. We’re afraid of jeopardizing our work. We’re afraid of failing. We’re afraid of the ways in which people might judge us. Procrastinating on our health feels like the easier thing to do when everything feels so difficult. Avoidance allows us to forget, albeit temporarily.

Sometimes we procrastinate on taking care of ourselves because subconsciously we believe we don’t deserve happiness or wellness. We feel unworthy, and this dictates how we treat ourselves, how we prioritize self-care, how we approach our wellbeing. Many of us prioritize everything in our lives over taking care of our health – our relationships, our families, our work. The challenges other people in our lives are facing get more of our attention than our own challenges. We believe we are less important than our loved ones and our responsibilities.

When we procrastinate on our wellbeing, we fail to see the impact that can have on our addictions and mental health issues. Usually the longer we ignore a problem, the bigger it gets. Our depression, stress and anxiety can reach dangerous levels. Our judgment can become impaired. We lose sleep. We stop eating. We may become physically ill. For many of us, our patterns snowball until they have devastating consequences for our lives, our relationships and our health. We often don’t get help until things have become truly unmanageable and unbearable.

Choosing to stop procrastinating on our health is making the decision that you matter, that your health and happiness are important to you. We can only hope to give to others and to this world, to our work, to our families, when we are whole ourselves; otherwise we often find ourselves caught in cycles of brokenness and self-destructiveness. We have less to give. Make the choice to prioritize your health and recovery. You will have infinitely more to give to the people and things you love in life.

Self-care can be a hard habit to start. Let us help. Call (800) 871-5440.