Productivity and Procrastination

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I seem to recall my father once telling me the entire human population has one thing in common: procrastination. Specifically, it is everyone’s worst fault.

Most business success comes down to who didn’t procrastinate. No one person has the monopoly on any idea or concept or product. So who makes it happen first?

And despite knowing the trials and tribulations or the valleys and hills it takes metaphorically crossing to get to our own ‘success’, we paradoxically view other’s success in broader strokes, as if their path were more linear.

Truthfully, we often only learn of someone after they’ve put in the hours, years, tears and time. And frankly that’s how it should be. All that being said:

The blogger of Wait But Why just gave a great TED Talk on procrastination.  It’s short and serves a punch. My thought: goals without deadlines are ethereal; and dreams can line up to become a list of lost opportunities and regrets.

Steve Dubner of Freakonomics fame and James Altucher of his own blog-podcast teamed up for the Question of the Day podcast. The most recent episode ask: How many projects should one person take on simultaneously?

This tows in line with procrastination, because when we take on too much or expect too much of ourselves, failure rate increases. I gage myself by the week’s output, not by the day. Some days have unavoidable interruptions even.

I do believe we have a finite amount of discipline in one day.

Conserve Your Willpower, It Runs Out via Wired

Strengthen Your Willpower Muscle via Entrepreneur

The Psychological Science of Self-Control via American Psychological Association

Supposing the above applies to you as well: Some of the best advice I got many many years ago, was the concept of ‘front-loading’. Front-load the workweek. Do the most at the beginning. Do the hardest task on your to-do list first. Try to get the most done in the earliest hours of the day. (if you’re a morning person) The beginning of any day absolutely sets the tone, whether it’s what you are eating for breakfast firing up your metabolism or making the first and hardest cold-call to a new client and feeling propelled from it.

I’m no slacker, but I’m not perfect; and I know some days are smoother sailing.

procrastination meme

Thank you for reading this, whenever you got around to it 🙂

BrockaProductivity and Procrastination

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