Procrestinating, a sophisticated English word for procrastination, we all suffer from it at one time or another. This is not only prevalent in student houses during the exam period, the tax return often remains unnecessarily long, just like this stupid job. “My magnum opus will never be there,” admits Jort Kelder in the last Jortcast. A good conversation about the science behind procrastination.
Jort Kelder is in conversation with Dr Joel Anderson, he is a philosopher affiliated with the University of Utrecht and he conducts extensive research on the social context of procrastination. “It certainly has social implications,” he told Jort Kelder. “Just think of people who go into debt because they’re stuck in their own procrastination. Or people who don’t go to the doctor with that one blemish.”
Better performance under pressure
There are also persistent misconceptions about procrastination. We often hear that people perform better under pressure and therefore like to postpone everything closer to the deadline. “It’s been scientifically proven to be wrong,” Anderson says.
“The quality of the work will certainly deteriorate as it is postponed.” You may be in a rush to get it all done quickly at the last minute, but the question is whether you perform better under pressure.
Is procrastination an incurable disease? You have people who are incorrigible and who will never learn, who continue to procrastinate despite the negative consequences. But there are certainly some tips for teaching yourself to behave differently.
“A frequently heard example is dental floss,” says Anderson. “But if you create an ‘if-then’ structure for yourself, you’re more likely to do it anyway. For example, if you say to yourself, every time I put toothpaste on my toothbrush, the floss is on the sink. Then you’ll find that you’re flossing a lot more often than if you don’t. “
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