Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Procrastination: Pull vs. Push

When I was in school, procrastination used to be a huge issue for me. I was a believer in the "procrastination is the art of keeping up with yesterday" way of life. For some reason, I always thrived on the thrill of "last minute". While that system worked out pretty well for assignments... it didn't work out so well for housework and those other life errands that didn't have a grade/deadline.

I came across this article about the Pull vs Push way of looking at procrastination. Or basically, a list with tips on Overcoming Procrastination Through a Pull Method.

My favorite is #6... How to Talk to Yourself
6. How to talk to yourself:
-- Replace "I have to" -- which promotes victimhood and resentment -- with "I choose to."
-- Replace "I must finish" with "When can I start again?"
-- Replace "This is so big/difficult/complex" with "I can take one small step: one rough, rough draft, one imperfect sketch."
-- Replace "I must do this right (i.e., perfectly)" with "I can be human." Accept "mistakes" as feedback, and part of the natural learning process. In fact, try to be imperfect. Intentionally do the first part of your project sloppily: rough draft in crayon, or on a coffee-stained old envelope. Worked for Abe.*
-- Replace "I've got to get this done; I don't have time for play" with "I must make time for play." Reward yourself with fun, friendship, exercise, whatever, after you've made your start. This makes making the next start much easier.

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