I am writing this because it is relevant to me, and I also think it is relevant for most of you, unconsciously. Then again, the thing is I had an epiphany this morning after I watched Tim Urban’s TED Talks video, by understanding how procrastination works. See in this perspective, if you think you are already fine with your current workflow on anything and there is no room for improvement, then go ahead, continue as you please. But if you think your 24 hours does not feel optimized yet, then this article is for you.
The beginning of it, was when I read the article of Gary Vaynerchuk about we all have same 24 hours a day, quoted from his original article from Medium: “6 Time Management Techniques from a Guy Who Has No Time”
You’ve got 24 hours a day. Let’s say you work a 9 to 5. Cool. That’s 8 hours a day. And let’s say you commute an hour there and an hour back. Cool. That’s 10 hours total. Want to spend time with your family? Awesome, you can spend 2 hours with them when you get home. Need 7 hours of sleep a night? Great. You’ve still got 5 hours a day left.
What I’m curious about is, what are you doing with those 5 hours?
I questioned myself what do I do for those 5 hours recently? And the answer was I watched Netflix, binge-watching on Mad Men from season 1 – season 7, at that time. And I consider every writing that I craft, is a therapy session to me, and even it is hard to admit, but it was a poisonous time, mindless, and autopilot on life. It is not healthy at all. So many times wasted. And I can not control myself. I can relate to what people call “living zombie”. When I read Gary’s article, and watch Tim’s talks, it was a wake-up call. Here I am, starting over, and try to be mindful to fight #digitalobesity.
- Procrastination with Datelines
- Procrastination without Datelines
Tim said inside everybody’s head there are 3 creatures: the Rational Decision Makers, the Instant Gratification Monkey, and the Panic Monster, they were fight about who drives the steering wheel. In a very normal condition, the Rational Decision Makers is dominant, everything under control, run as planned by considering every possibilities that would be happened. But in the head of Procrastinator, the Instant Gratification Monkey most of the time would take the steer, in my case, direct me to watch Netflix, or as simple as over-sleep for most people, or over-time in gaming, then delaying things that more important or high level of urgency. This is where the procrastination happens.
In Procrastination with Datelines scenario, when the due date comes, the Panic Monster would be activated, and it will cause the Monkey runaway from its responsibility, while the Rational Decision Maker left alone with so little time. It might be 3 months of time line, but it ends up with only 3 days left to finish. Sounds familiar?
Yes, the task might be finished, but always not fully optimized. This is the problem with this type of workflow.
Roughly, the second scenario is more challenging, the Procrastination without Datelines. Because here, the Panic Monster is not activated, and the Monkey is always be there, playing around the steer wheel. It is for the things such as eating well, exercise, writing, reading, family time, call friends, good deeds, and anything that take a self-disciplined, and usually non-work and non-entertainment related. It is more about our daily life. Actually, what is truly important for us.
We all been there on both of scenarios, unconsciously.
Now that we have consciously acknowledge it, the question is:
Can we be mindful about our life?
Yes, I think we can, and we should. We will try again tomorrow.