Before you judge this post by its title and start commenting, let me clarify that there are two different types of procrastination.
Passive procrastination, as we all know, is when we keep putting things off to tomorrow, the next day and the next and the next and so on. There’s plenty written about it and how it can destroy your productivity and your work life, in general.
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Active procrastination, on the other hand, is when you are putting off a task for some time because you like the adrenalin rush that comes with working under pressure. This means you are actually doing what needs to be done in that time to get results which are more valuable.
Now I am going to focus on this second type of procrastination. And discuss with you all about the great things on time, but with a slight delay than how regular people are doing.
Procrastination and Life
We all procrastinate. Whether at work or at home, there are times when we put off things for later. Or should I say — not in the mood to that thing. We don’t even realize when procrastination gets stuck to our life like a leech and sucks productivity out of it. We simply put off things and are not doing anything in that time. It becomes a habit.
As they say, old habits die hard. But what if rather than giving up on this habit, we embrace this habit with a twist. This is where Active Procrastination comes into the picture.
How to embrace procrastination? And turn it into something positive
Rather than thinking of procrastination as something that’s holding you hostage, think of it as a habit with which you can achieve more in less time. And use it as a motivation to do things which you love to do more.
For instance, if you love to paint think of procrastinating at work as a means to get more time to paint. This way you will not feel depressed or distressed while not having worked. Rather you will get to your assigned task with more focus and full energy as you would have spent time doing something that you enjoy.
It might sound a bit confusing at first, but once you get into the habit of it you will understand the true value of active procrastination. The benefits mentioned below can prove to be of great help to understand this.
Good things that will start to happen in your life
I have compiled a list of good things that will start to happen in your life once you embrace the habit of active procrastination. These points are based on experiences shared by friends and colleagues, facts gathered from various resources that have been cited wherever needed.
Let us take a look at the good things now -
There’s no scope left for failures
A big problem with human nature is that whenever it knows there is ample amount of time left to complete something, it won’t put the best efforts in the first attempt. This is the reason so much time is wasted in doing things over and over again.
When you are an active procrastinator, there is no scope left for failure. Why? Because you don’t have the time. You might argue that failure are bound to happen. Yes I do agree with it, but with time you will get to see that failures become minimum if not completely negligible.
You become more focused
Studies have shown that human brain is more focused on doing things when it has limited amount of time to do something. That’s the whole concept behind embracing active procrastination. You have to give your brain minimum time to think of something or finish off something, which you were spending days working on earlier.
Plus the fact that your mind will be fresh from doing things you have enjoyed over the course of time, you will automatically be more focussed. (there’s plenty of studies supporting this fact). All this makes it quite evident that procrastination, if used wisely, can be the best thing for your productivity.
Prioritization will no longer be a problem
You will no longer be stuck in a fix while having to choose between something you enjoy doing and something that important for work. There will be no flipping coins to take decisions. You can go ahead and devote more time to your hobbies, and keep bare minimum time for your office/business related activities.
In other words, your mind will have less choices to make. This can be something similar to the concept that Mark Zuckerberg uses — wearing grey t-shirt and blue jeans everyday at work just to avoid his mind from going through an extra decision making.
Collaboration will become a habit
Another common issue that people usually face while working in teams is active collaboration. It is a general tendency to leave collaboration to the eleventh hour when you are working with people from different departments. This not only increases dependencies on tasks, but also increases the chances of last minute errors. Because you never the other person is occupied doing something else. Or, is simply not focused at work.
But when you know you have only bare minimum time to get things done, you will collaborate timely and letting the other person know his accountability if things don’t go right the first time. As simple as that!
Creative juices will start to flow
The biggest change active procrastination will bring in your life is in terms of creativity. You will start looking for more effective solutions. Doing things that can actually save time, because you have already set a limited amount of it.
You will look for opportunities that can make you more productive. And it might not come as a surprise that you end up embracing some positive qualities of your co-workers which you never even noticed before. You can expect yourself to become lot more creative and innovative by becoming an active procrastinator.
Sound quite simple, don’t these points? And I must say quite impressive as well.
Remember, we are talking about becoming an active procrastinator from being a procrastinator. And not the other way around. Don’t get your mind to wander, as procrastination is an evil that can creep in and swipe off all the positive things you intend to do by making you fall in the doom loop of a few more minutes of comfort. You have to focus on how much time you require to get things done. It might be bare minimum, but it should be enough.
And, don’t lose heart if things don’t out right in the first go. It will take time for your brain to acclimatize to this habit of procrastination. So be patient enough to wait for good things to happen, rather than giving up in just one try.
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Vartika Kashyap is a seasoned marketing professional who is an expert in digital marketing and entrepreneurship. She’s been featured among LinkedIn’s Top Voices for the year 2016. She currently runs the marketing team at ProofHub — a project management software for teams of all sizes. Connect with Vartika on LinkedIn, Medium and Twitter.
Also follow our company page @ProofHub to get the recent updates about our tool, published articles, motivational quotes & presentations.
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Originally published at LinkedIn.