Knowing what I’m doing and why I do it is one thing, but actually doing it?
Returning readers will know that I always try and do a lot of things and that I’m always coming up with new ideas and taking new opportunities, so why do I always complain about progress?
It’s not a difficult question to answer, as the issues lie within a little something called procrastination.
I’m not going to lie, I am a lazy, unmotivated, undetermined university student. Whenever something important needs doing, I usually run through the same 3 step process: write a list of what needs doing, realise how long the list is, start playing FIFA.
This process goes on and on until I have about 2 hours left to do the things I needed to do on the list, like handing in some coursework or updating my blog. This strange phenomenon known as “approach avoidance” is literally the only reason why things ever get done, because we go into full panic mode and somehow activate our innate powers to produce a world class, 4000 essay in little over 4 hours.
All in a matter of seconds, we are able to convince ourselves that whatever we should be doing can wait until later and that we can actually get that thing done in such a short space of time.
Within a week, once you finish binge-watching all 10 seasons of Friends you fall into a weird phase of instant/false gratification where you start doing, even more, things just to justify even more procrastination, like cleaning your room or doing the dishes.
During my A Level years, you would know exactly when my next assignment was due literally just based on how tidy my room was… No joke.
The crazy thing is no matter how clean my room was by the end of the week, my work was (almost) always done, and that’s the reason why I complain.
If I can do a whole weeks worth of work in little over 4 hours, why do I wait until the day of the deadline to get it done? And why do we get so few things done?
Surely if you can achieve anything in an hour, you’d only be about 5 hours away from taking over the world? Or 10 seconds away from the next record breaking guitar solo? I mean, it’s been two years, and I still can’t even play my guitar – what is going on?
I will probably release a detailed post in future about how to stop procrastinating, but for the time being I thought it would be interesting to start a discussion on way we procrastinate in the first place. Feel free to drop a comment below talking about the most important thing you’ve had to leave until deadline day because you were procrastinating!