Today, I came across this article online about procrastination and felt really related to it. Well, I didn’t get a chance to get through the whole thing because it seemed endlessly long. My phone was vibrating every few minutes due to all those accounts I’ve subscribed to on Tweeter. I had to resist the urge to check my Facebook account, email, and the online dating website I’ve signed up to. I knew I had to get my weekend shopping and cleaning done and I was totally stressed by how the clock was ticking and I wasn’t even half way through my to-do list. Ironically, I was procrastinating reading an article about procrastination while worrying about procrastinating the stuff that I had to do. As I am trying to write this right now, I had to stop and brush my teeth. At some point I even convinced myself to stop writing altogether and watch a movie instead. The logic being nobody likes reading about my personal problems.
According to the article, the brain of the procrastinator is programmed to value instant gratification higher than future gains. She fails to recall the pain she had to go through doing so and she doesn’t feel threatened by the repercussions. In fact, she has spoiled her brain over the years that nothing feels more unpleasant than taking action. Then she distracts herself from the task at hand and focuses her attention on something unimportant; or splits it among a few. That’s when she’s in the dark playground. She’s playing but she doesn’t enjoy it because there’s guilt. She feels shameful. She’s not content. She even has remorse. She’s paralyzed though. She can’t get herself back on the right track. At least not until the panic attack monster appears. The panic attack monster appears when there’s someone over her shoulder to give her a deadline. Then she finds no choice but to take action; she waits until the last minute though; and that’s why she can never give her best.
Every fiber of my being relates to this. I’ve been discontent with myself since I stepped foot in college. I’d always been an straight A student before college. I was a last-minute person but it used to work. I remember how once I had to know a fairly long poem by heart as homework and how I managed to memorize it in recess. I even recall a time when I stayed up all night and studied for a history final exam from a book that I had never even opened. I got the highest mark. I was smart and I was well aware of it. My intelligence was counterpoising my procrastination. But as I got older intelligence alone seemed not be enough anymore. And I didn’t know what the missing factor was. Then soon I started losing the trust I had in myself. I thought to myself maybe I’m not that smart after all. My self-image changed drastically. My confidence was gone with the wind. And I had no clue what had gone wrong. Today, it all started making sense. I’m still not sure where to begin; but I know I need to re-program my brain. They say you can’t change your destination overnight, but you definitely can change your direction.
You may find the article here.