Is ginormous actually a word? I have been having this recurring nightmare where a massive law enforcement-type person – hence the word ginormous – barges in, handcuffs me, and threatens my entire existence. And, no, do not go there. This is not an erotic dream.
I struggle with great resolve but cannot find the strength to overtake him. Over and over again, I am forcefully carted away and thrown into a solitary prison cell that houses nothing but a keyboard.
Now, I know what you're thinking. This tormented old soul desperately needs a psychoanalyst. But actually, you would be wrong because I know who the intruder is . . . it is a Supervillain known as The Procrastinator.
Okay, fine. Go ahead and laugh. But understand that the trauma is real. The more I age, the more I procrastinate. Why? What is the psychology behind the belief that I can just do it later without repercussion?
The most common explanations range from incorrectly estimating the time to get a project done to waiting for the right time, inspiration, or motivation to begin.
Some say that procrastination may be the result of an underlying condition: generalized anxiety disorder, major depressive disorder, adult ADHD, and obsessive-compulsive disorder. If I were to buy into these blanket diagnoses, it would suggest I am a textbook psycho. For the record, however, I have never been "textbook" at anything. I am a proud and complicated hot mess.
My deep dive also showed that it is not unique to humans. A study of pigeons showed that they tend to choose a complex but delayed task rather than an easy but hurry-up one. Well, that is a relief. I emulate the actions of a pigeon. I wonder if I should add that to my resume.
Actually, I believe my situation resolves around two of my own personal truths: Avoidance and Denial. Not only do I avoid tasks that I deem unpleasant, but I also pretend that I have other tasks that are far more important than the essential ones. And sadly, neither of them usually gets done.
With that admission, it is a mockery that I have always deemed my biggest strengths as Focus and Drive. Nothing, and I mean nothing, can distract me from professional achievement. When I am appropriately compensated and given a time-stamped deadline, I will not fail. I would never allow myself to fail. So why doesn’t that level of motivation apply to personal goals in my private life?
No clue. I have absolutely no clue. My application of focus and drive is mysteriously discriminatory. If it is not supported by monetary gain The Procrastinator possesses my spirit and turns me into an ice cream-eating, wine-guzzling, TV-watching zombie. And no amount of self-imposed discipline breaks his spell.
But there is always a silver lining to every black cloud, right? My ability to put aside many important tasks also allows me to experience exceptional wine, hug my old yet still precious pup, and age ever so gracefully. Although, in all honesty, I am still awaiting the graceful part. Ah, but that is fodder for yet another rant.
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