“Procrastination is the thief of time, collar him.”
― Charles Dickens, David Copperfield
I procrastinate. I have always done this, even as a child. There were always better things to do than the things I was supposed to be doing.
Tidy my room? Yep, just after I finish this chapter of my book.
Write my dissertation? Sure, just hang on while I design a webpage for no reason.
In fact, writing this blog page is actually me procrastinating from cleaning the house.
Why do I do it? Well, Psychology Today seems to think there are three main reasons why we do this.
- The adrenaline rush you get from pushing yourself against a limit (usually a time restriction),
- lack of pressure to achieve a goal and
- seeing procrastination itself as a problem – when in fact it’s a symptom of an underlying issue.
In general, I would say that when I procrastinate it is a combination of all three – and the underlying issue is usually that I have no desire to do the task at all!
In the case of getting fit and healthy, it is mainly reasons 2 and 3 that resonate with me.
I’m losing weight because I want to be fitter and fit into a smaller size of clothes, but I don’t have a valid time pressure to do this by. There is no upcoming event that I need to look amazing at or an outfit that I need to wear by a specific time, so I let myself cruise along because I can always start tomorrow.
Now, I have a strongly held belief that no one should change because another person pressures them into doing so, but equally I suspect it would work better for ME if my husband did apply a bit of pressure and pointed out when I was putting on weight, but because I know he will love me no matter how I look, then he isn’t a limit either.
The underlying issue is that I probably don’t want the hassle of changing. I don’t want to have to stop eating “naughty” things (although actually I’m not planning to stop eating naughty stuff, I’m just going to eat a LOT less of them), I don’t want to drag myself out of bed to exercise and, most importantly, I don’t want people to laugh at me getting hot and sweaty. And that links into my OCD and my fear of doing things.
But I will nail this. Just let me finish this blog post first…