I have been looking at ways to get myself motivated to do these items, reading many articles on how to get out of a procrastination rut. But nothing was effective for very long.
I had a bunch of items sitting on my to-do list last week, and I decided to figure out why I was procrastinating on them.
As I examined each one, I realized that each one either did not represent one concrete action, or had other steps that needed to be done first. The phrase from Getting Things Done: The Art of Stress-Free Productivity (aff) came back to me: “amorphous blob of undoability”.
Is It Procrastination?
Procrastination is defined as “to put off intentionally”. The things I was routinely skipping over were not things I was intentionally leaving behind, as in saying, “I’m not going to do that right now.” Instead, it was a subconscious feeling of “I can’t do that right now.”
Or Is It Lack Of Clarity?
I really think that it isn’t a matter of procrastination at all. Each of these items were not defined so I had written down what needed to be done next. Instead, I would think, “well, I can’t call X because I have to call Y to get X’s number…” and the project expanded in my mind so that I never had enough time to do it. However, a “Call Y to get X’s number” would be easily accomplished.
Redefining Things That Aren’t Moving
I am beginning to see that resistance to doing things is there because I know at some level there is more to do than is on the list itself. So I put it off, not willing to think about what needs to be done. If I can interrupt this cycle and figure out by thinking out the process what needs to be done next, I stand a better chance of moving forward.
It’s not a matter of procrastination at all…it’s a matter of fuzzy thinking. And fuzzy thinking can be fixed by training myself to think things through.
Photo by Lone Black Rider