This article about new research into procrastination, from the WSJ, was very helpful to me:
Often, procrastinators attempt to avoid the anxiety or worry aroused by a tough task with activities aimed at repairing their mood, such as checking Facebook or taking a nap. But the pattern, which researchers call “giving in to feel good,” makes procrastinators feel worse later, when they face the consequences of missing a deadline or making a hasty, last-minute effort
Even though I’m good about not letting procrastination cause me to miss deadlines, I do, like most people, do it. I especially put off doing personal and career development things that are not required but would benefit me a lot.
Increasingly, psychologists and time-management consultants are focusing on a new strategy: helping procrastinators see how attempts at mood repair are sabotaging their efforts and learn to regulate their emotions in more productive ways.
Everything goes back to emotions and moods! I’m increasingly coming to believe that the more we understand rather than tune out our emotions, the more we can overcome behaviors that derail us.