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Friday, January 10, 2014
How to Break the Procrastination Habit
If you’re thinking you might put off reading this story, don’t even think about it.
In this interview by Anita Bruzzese with Timothy A. Pychyl, author of “Solving the Procrastination Puzzle,” the issues of procrastination, its impact and how to change your ways are explored.
AB: In the book, you say that delay is often a necessary part of our lives. How so?
TP: At any given time, there are many things we can or should do. We have many choices. Doing one of these things means delay on others. This is all part of rational planning and setting priorities. Delay is an important part of everyday life as we make choices and set priorities.
AB: How is procrastination different and what impact does it have on our careers?
TP: I like to say that while all procrastination is delay, not all delay is procrastination. Strictly speaking, we define procrastination as the voluntary delay of an intended act despite knowing that we will be worse off for the delay. There is no upside to procrastination. It is self-defeating in that we needlessly delay action when we intended to act previously and nothing is preventing us from acting except our own reluctance.
This negative form of delay typically undermines our performance (and wastes a lot of time), affects social relations negatively, lowers our well-being, and can even result in poorer health overall from increased stress, fewer wellness behaviors and treatment delay.
AB: You mention that procrastination makes us feel good. Can you explain?
TP: When we face aversive tasks, we experience negative emotions such as frustration, boredom, or fear. We certainly don’t feel like doing the task at hand. By avoiding the (read more here)