How To Stop Procrastination Later

Do you procrastinate? Of course you do. Why else would you be reading this blog instead of doing real stuff.

But then again, may be reading this blog is what you really wanted to do. In that case, thanks. You have made a wise choice.

The truth about procrastination is that everyone does it. Even the most productive and driven among us do it once in a while. Procrastination is a primal force in our brains. It is the primate in us that decides whether it wants to do something now or something later. Monkeys always choose now.

But us, the creatures of higher intelligence, have more stuff to worry about, like aging, health issues, financial stability and providing for one’s clan. A purely logical entity(like say a computer) will always go for the immediate reward, since logically there is no certainty about future. But then again, we (our brains) are not logical.

Stop your bitching and accept it. Your brain is not logical. Its emotional. Even when it makes logical decisions, it is your emotion, or a mix of emotions, that activated the logic part of your brain. Since emotions are complex, how your brain acts is also complex and, more importantly, a lot unpredictable. Your attempts to break procrastination fails right here. It is because, you place your trust on faulty logic.

When you are about to decide whether you should write that blog post or play a video game, your brain decides and says ‘lets play video game now since [insert lame reason] and write that blog later’. What your brain does not realize yet is that the ‘future you’ is terrible at sticking to these plans made by ‘present you’. When the so-called ‘later’ arrives, your brain is emotionally influenced by a variety of current factors that there is no certainty that it will follow-up on the previous scheduled action, which in this case was writing the blog. This causes anxiety, which causes fear. Fear makes us to fall back on easy options. Like procrastinating. Too many factors play into your emotional weak spots and it makes the decision-making process unpredictable and hence unreliable.

The way to overcome this is to simply accept that fact that instant gratification is part of our psyche. We will never get rid of our need to satisfy immediate impulses like checking emails, quick tea and Facebook statuses. We can also accept that our brain is good at making plans now and not executing them later. Once you realize that the ‘future-you’ is a no good fuck up, you also realize that it’s up to the ‘present you’ to pick up and actually finish your tasks. Then you just go and do it.

Note: All content of this blog has been plagiarized from this article in You Are Not So Smart Blog

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I am on a blog-a-day-for-a-year crusade. Keep me motivated with your comments. Or did you notice that Phoenix is getting colder?