Procrastination is the Thief of Time



“Procrastination is the thief of time
At thirty, man suspects himself a fool;
Knows it at forty, and reforms his plan;
At fifty chides his infamous delay,
Pushes his prudent purpose to resolve;
In all the magnanimity of thought
Resolves, and re-resolves; then dies the same.”

– Edward Young, Night Thoughts

If you’ve read any type of self-improvement book or blog, at some point you’ve most likely came across the topic of “procrastination.”

Now, it’s my turn.

First, we’re all guilty of it. I’m guilty of it. I’m not writing this from the perspective that I’ve mastered eliminating procrastination. Instead I can say I’ve put a lot of thought into finding new approaches to counteract the condition.

Let’s go back in time…

It’s 11:30PM on a Tuesday night, and I still haven’t finished my biology project. Looking back I can’t even remember the details of the project. It dealt with cell development. I just know I was about 15 years old and in high school. I ended up barely finishing it and the appearance was dismal. I think I got a “C”.

Had I started the project sooner, I probably could have pulled off an “A”.

What has changed in 17 years? Physically, a lot. I’m older and my blood pressure is up. Mentally, not a lot. Sure, I’ve learned more, but the same types of thoughts I had back then are still here. I’ve just had to find new approaches to get the job done.

In a previous post I discussed how I “get things done“. The steps listed are a major part of how I keep myself organized, but the motivation is why.

I’ve had to reprogram my mind to see the benefits of the end results. I know the sooner I finish a task, the sooner I can begin the next. I don’t rush, adding to the potential for inconsistencies. I just imagine I’m focused in like a laser on the goal. Finishing ahead of schedule provides for good customer service. Plus, it’s above average.

I’ve set certain expectations for completion times. As I complete them, it gives me a boost to move on to the next and ahead of schedule. I turn it into a game.

Aiming for above average is what impresses people the most. They don’t expect it.

What techniques do you use?

As always, please leave your thoughts in the comments below.