I'm a Procrastinator, That's Why/How I Get So Much Done

Let me say it again, I'm a procrastinator, that's why/how I get so much done.

I'll explain...

I'm all about efficiency and productivity, but recently I've come to the realization that productivity doesn't just have to be about learning new things and writing more code. It can include hanging out with friends and exercise. I was about to write relaxing also, but, to me, learning and producing code is the same thing as relaxing.

Procrastination is putting something off until later.

..an extension of that...

Productive Procrastination is doing something worthwhile while procrastinating.

Feel free to define worthwhile any way you choose. Probably not regretting the event would be one minimum requirement of worthwhile.

One example that I gave in a speech recently was about watching The Walking Dead. If you really enjoy watching The Walking Dead and want to keep up with it every week, then that is productive procrastination. If you watch the next show afterwards just because it looks cool or interesting, then you are procrastinating. When you watch even more shows after that just because you don't want to move or change the channel, then you are being lazy.

Being lazy and being a procrastinator are two completely different things.

I procrastinate some work because it is not as intriguing as other work that I eventually would have to do anyways.

As long as I'm always doing something, then I can be fine with that. It doesn't always have to be the most urgent or important thing.

You always hear about people saying to stop procrastinating and that you should never procrastinate. But, I'm here to tell you that you should procrastinate [and need] to procrastinate.

Sometimes, you just have to have fun and enjoy yourself, enjoy life; And, forget about all other things you have to do for a little while.

If you can think of two things that you have to do, then you must procrastinate one over the other. You typically can't do two things at once (multitask); You can only switch between the tasks very fast so that it seems like you are doing two things at once. But, that is for another post.

You are going to procrastinate.

Procrastination creates time and motivation. You are highly motivated to not do something, so much that you'll do your taxes. Or people who procrastinate their taxes will enjoy a clean and organized room. There are many more examples that I don't feel like getting into.

Use can use what other people consider a flaw to your advantage.

When you are working on a project and feel you are going nowhere, get up from the desk and procrastinate productively. Get something done, like eating, exercise, nap, brainstorm, reading. Each one of those examples could provide you with a creativity boost to help you on your project.

80-20 Rule
Crunch time.

You could spend an entire day writing a paper, or you can spend just a couple of hours writing the paper right before it is due. Either way, it's pretty much going to be the same quality. Except, with one method you will have more free time to do things you want to do. (Warning: This line of reasoning does not apply to all examples)

If I didn't procrastinate, then I wouldn't have been able to go to the beach, go rock climbing, or complete the development of another Android app. All last week. This is what I consider to be worthwhile and productive procrastination. I was procrastinating creating a speech about productive procrastination. It truly shows that I live by that word.

I've gotten quite a few unexpected job offers just because I am friends with many people. That never would have happened if I didn't hang out with anybody. Research agrees that most people are hired through recommendations and word-of-mouth rather than through job listings such as Monster.com.

Students with 4.0 GPAs don't necessarily do better in life than students who graduate with a 3.0 GPA.

Plan of Action.

The key to productive procrastination is to have a long list of things to accomplish and place something like "learn a language" at the very top. John Perry, philosophy professor at Stanford and author of "The Art of Procrastination", says "the trick is to put the right sorts of projects for the top of the list. The ideal sorts of things have two characteristics. First, they seem to have clear deadlines (but really don't). Second, they seem awfully important (but really aren't)."

The most productive people you know are putting something off.



~ Simply Advanced ~

ps - I'm currently working on a large programming project and using this as my little break. The more I put into it, ... I need to stop writing now.

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