Cartoon by Dave Walker.
David has asked his readers to answer the question "Do you Procrastinate?" Which is good because I'm short of blog fodder, probably because I actually have been busy . . .unusual for me I'm usually in control and not too fussed about running around like a chook with it's head cut off . . .So do I? Of course but I am a contradiction in terms.
I'm uber organised. I'm never late, I keep track of things at work via a CRM which allows tasking and timing. I plan projects on . . .well MS Project. My files are up to date. I plan meals as best I can given the itinerant condition of my family at the moment. I am ultimately a creature of habit. I am predictable (so I've been told many times) I have my little routines. . . . early morning I check blogs and emails, have 2 cups of Irish Breakfast tea with milk and 1 sugar. I iron the day's clothes, shower, dress and tidy the kitchen. Pat the Princess, plump the cushions and head off to work . . .in the evening, come home, put on my comfies, watch the news, pour a glass of chardy, and then make dinner. I always wash up and sweep the floor before going to bed. I have coffee with my sister ever Saturday (when sport finishes) and do my grocery shopping every Sunday morning. I am ultimately reliable.
So why, when it comes to quite important things do I procrastinate . . just look at this lot!
So yes, I procrastinate . . I've had three balls of yarn and knitting needles in a drawer for three years . . I've had kitchen shears waiting to be sharpened on my computer desk at work for two! It's taken me 10 years to finally realise that I really must do something about my weight . . .It'll take another year before I have the courage to tell my brother that I'm pulling the plug and selling up . . .I still haven't bought my sister-in-law a birthday present, her birthday was in May . . or my sister a birthday gift . . hers was in June! It's not that I don't care, it's not that I'm lazy . . frankly I think it's because there are other things I'd rather do such as talk online or enjoy drinks and nibblies with my son and his girlfriend on a Sunny Sydney afternoon.
- Interior painting - been talking about it for a week but there's still a nasty grubby stain on the ceiling where the valley gutters leaked since torrential rain in April, all I've done is locate my paint tray and roller.
- Washing my curtains which are decidedly grubby, I think the lounge curtains were last washed in um 2001 . . rather tardy for someone who's a fastidious house keeper
- Passport application - ready to go. All I have to do is make a booking at the local post office, have the interview and pay the cheque
- Buy shoes . . I have two pairs of work shoes . . sensible Colorado types but one pair has a crack clean across the sole on the ball of my foot . . why don't I just go out and buy another pair?
- Photography course, I've missed three intakes and if I don't get cracking I'll miss the next in July!
- Then there are the things that I know cause procrastination because they're unpleasant . . cleaning the oven, tidying the wardrobe, venturing into DrummerBoy's bedroom and climbing over the tool kits and overnight bags, playstation boxes and piles of clothes to change his sheets! Cleaning the Envyrocycle sprinklers which have become bunged up with mud after recent rain. I even went to Bunnings this weekend and bought a new leaf blower but the hinge on my kitchen cabinet is still hanging off - it didn't cross my mind to buy one whilst I was there.
So why do we procrastinate? Apparently because:
Actually I think I really procrastinate on a lot of maintenance type things because I don't like doing them on my own. Even if there's someone just holding a shovel or pottering beside me doing nothing much, it's so much nicer doing the jobs you hate when you have company . . .and my 'company' make themselves very scarce when chores have to be tackled! Look, life is like ironing . . once you get motivated to put the board up . . it's all good!
- poor time management, often associated with a distorted sense of the time available . . Oh yeah! I get carried away on Skype, Facebook, blogs, emails . . .big time!
- an inability to prioritise . . What isn't drinking and enjoying lunch in the sun a higher priority than scrubbing the floors?
- overload of tasks at a specific time OK I'll grant this one . . too much dirty washing on a Saturday, why couldn't he be a tie-wearing executive instead of a mud lumbered landscaper!
- anxiety about the task, so time is spent worrying rather than doing . . Definitely true of a garden the size of Central Park, even a day's work barely makes a dint!
- difficulty concentrating . . who me? Oh look at that pretty butterfly!
- not knowing what is required . . .definitely not . . I KNOW what has to be done, I CHOOSE to not do it!
- feeling overwhelmed by the task(s) When it comes to cupboards . .absolutely!
- concern about failing or not meeting your own standards . . .nah . . .I've learned to relax a little about failing . .hey . . . if it happens often enough you get used to it!
- fear of success and its possible consequences . . Possibly . .maybe that explains the passport thing . . once I've got it, I'll have to use it.
- perfectionism, often associated with unrealistic standards Probably . . .unrealistic standards but perfectionism has never been a big thing. (I can hear my daughter yelling "W-h-a-t, you have to be kidding" from 12,000 miles away!
- negative feelings - e.g. "I'm stupid", "nothing ever goes right for me" Oooooh yeah! Bowm Bowm . . chicka chickahhhh . . .
- being bored by the task DEFINITELY . .what's fun about washing, cleaning, tidying, scooping, blowing . . .I'd rather be . . spotlighting possums with a Maglite
- avoidance of things which are disliked or difficult . . Ever tried cleaning an oven after three years use?
Hey, slackers of the world UNITE . . . . . . .tomorrow! Procrastinate now, don’t put it off! Here are the top 10 reasons to procrastinate: