On Procrastination

June 22, 2009

Last week I read a fantastic piece on ChangeOrder called “Do or Die? Six Secrets for Managing Deadlines” that I’ve been mulling over ever since.

Image Copyright D. Sherwin of Change Order

Image Copyright D. Sherwin of Change Order

Let me just be up front. I’m a procrastinator. I think this is the first time I’ve ever admitted it, because I’m a very proactive person (always busy), but I live for the drama of a deadline. Until I read the article on ChangeOrder, I never saw my procrastination for what it was.

I’ll never forget when my boss asked me take the Jung Typology test for the first time. My personality profile resonated with me so much, particularly in my view that deadlines are flexible. Luckily for me, my boss and I have the same personality profile (INTJ), so I’ve never gotten in trouble for missing a deadline (and they have been many). Gotta give myself credit for one thing – I’m a communicator, and rarely miss a deadline without communicating up front that I might miss it.

Lately I miss deadlines with homework nearly every week. This is unusual for me, so I’ll add as a disclaimer that I’m in an 8-week session of which I was sick for about two. Getting caught up has been a bear for which I have no words.

I’ll also say that I’ve had grace with my teachers because I’ve communicated. My writing for these classes is currently saving my rear.

But still, every week.

So here’s what I’ve learned about me:

  1. I work best when a deadline depends on it. No Deadline=No Motivation.
  2. I procrastinate until the deadline looms, and then I get it done, fast.
  3. Sometimes I miss the deadline and give myself “grace.” I tell myself I’m busy, and I work hard. The reality is that I should have never procrastinated.
  4. In summary, I work well with a deadline, but my view of them as “flexible” can be self-sabotaging.

Now, I don’t know what to do with this revelation. I’m a good time manager, and I know how to get things done. But this deadline-missing stuff could cause real problems for me later if I don’t deal with it now. I know that I need to learn to not procrastinate, and I need to take control of my own deadline management… just not sure how.

Any fellow deadline drama queens out there? How do you manage?

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1 Comment

  • Reply mandy June 23, 2009 at 12:03 am

    Do whatever it is that you HAVE to do first in order of priority. Then, promise yourself some kind of reward for doing them.


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