Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Procrastination

I thought I wrote about procrastination in my blog when I first started writing it. It was certainly a major topic on my list of potential posts. I guess I never got around to doing the post.
Around here the saying "If it weren't for the last minute, nothing would get done" is eerily accurate. As diligent as I am at work and even with my little project plans to manage some of my major tasks, the activities seem to expand to fill the allotted time. Inevitably as I approach my deadline there are one or two minor things that need to get wrapped up. Why is that?
There really is only one answer: procrastination.
A lot of people think that means I sit back and stare at the ceiling and put off doing my job, but it doesn't. What usually happens is that I procrastinate by doing work. Apparently a lot of people do exactly the same thing. Gretchen Rubin wrote an excellent article titled Working: One of the Most Dangerous Forms of Procrastination and it hit me right between the eyes.
I multi-task quite often. Sometimes I will get into a tunnel-vision state and accomplish a lot - a fantastic amount really - in a short period of time, but that honestly wears me out. I'll finish a bout of such activity and feel like a Berserker coming up for air. Most of the time, though, my job requires me to balance a number of different tasks, and that's okay. Over the years you simply learn to deal with them all as efficiently as you can, and I'm pretty good at it. I used to also be pretty good at what we called firefighting when I worked as an Engineer in the plants; urgent situations cropping up unexpectedly that needed to be resolved immediately, while still managing all the normal duties.
When I am on a short-term deadline to accomplish a goal I find myself procrastinating over the tasks I don't particularly relish and doing other job-related tasks instead. I still feel like I am accomplishing something worthwhile (and I am) but I'm not using Covey's Seven Habits effectively and putting first things first. I know I'm doing it and eventually force myself back on track, but it is such an easy way to distract myself. How shallow I am!
When we lived in Michigan, Mom got tickled by something she called a round tuit. She even put one on the refrigerator for a while. I'm not always the brightest bulb in the box; I had to ask her what it meant.
It meant that she was going to get around to it. Mom was funny that way.
I fully intend to get around to it, also, very soon.
Until then, I have a few more things on my desk to finish up quickly.

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