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December 19, 2012

How to Handle Procrastination

Laziness vs Procrastination


Laziness = no desire/ambition and no action
Procrastination = some desire/ambition and no action

Both of them lack action, but they differ in presence of desire to succeed.

Causes Commonly Found in Books

  1. Thrill-seeking
  2. Residual Teenage Rebellion against parents and other authority figures
  3. Perfectionism
  4. Anxiety
  5. Fear of failure
  6. Fear of success

Causes Recently Found in New Research

  1. Lack of confidence
  2. Impulsiveness
  3. Need for instant gratification
  4. Unpleasantness of the activity in question: lack of fun/enjoyment
  5. Powerlessness
  6. Lack of meaning
  7. Temporal Myopia: Discounting future pains and rewards
  8. Not even being aware that one is procrastinating

So what? What can you do your procrastination, given these findings?


James Kilts in "Doing What Matters" has urged us not to be unduly persuaded by "facts" and "solid judgements," but to rely more on our own "experience and commonsense." With that spirit, let's go through the lists above again.

  1. Thrill-seeking: Are these reasonable solutions? "Stop seeking such thrills." "Find some other types of thrills"
  2. Residual Teenage Rebellion against parents and other authority figures" Are these reasonable solutions? "You are now an adult, your are in charge, there's no one to rebel against."
  3. Perfectionism" Are these reasonable solutions? "Good enough is enough most of the times"
  4. Anxiety: ??
  5. Fear of failure: ??
  6. Fear of success: ??
  7. Lack of confidence: Are these reasonable solutions? "Just be more confidence"
  8. Impulsiveness: Are these reasonable solutions? "Look before you leap"
  9. Need for instant gratification
  10. Unpleasantness of the activity in question: lack of fun/enjoyment
  11. Powerlessness
  12. Lack of meaning
  13. Temporal Myopia: Discounting future pains and rewards
  14. Not even being aware that one is procrastinating

I want to write more. I hate impractical, high-sounding solutions as much as anyone. But, right now, I have loads to do, so I am leaving just a few methods that I've found useful in my own experience.

My Favourite Methods

  1. Mindfulness
  2. Establish your identity: What are your values? What kind of person are you?
  3. Meaning/Mission/Purpose : Why do you want to do this?
  4. Envisioning a concrete future: in color, in details, in 3D, with emotions

2 comments:

  1. I don't believe your favourite methods work for you. They look lame and spiritless and without any emotional content.

    C'mon, you can write better ;-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. (1) My methods have room to improve, I agree.
      (2) Maybe I can write better too.
      Thanks.

      Delete