How Can I Cure Procrastination?

[3-Minute Read] The best cure for procrastination is prevention. Separate the fear from your reality and you will open a new doorway to your productivity.

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How can I cure procrastination? #askingforafriend

I found the cure for procrastination in a weird place. It turns out the best cure for procrastination is prevention.

Listen to Audio Version – How Can I Cure Procrastination?

Procrastination – A Strangely Normal Condition

Procrastination is a strangely normal condition that often afflicts an individual more than they acknowledge. There is a simple cure, and I’ll share it with you now in the best way that I know how.

One day, many days ago, a group of furrow-browed professors gathered to solve a perplexing problem. They invited a chicken and an egg to join their number.

Like Odin and his wild ocean, debate raged in peaks and troughs, smashing every possible answer into shards against rocky cliffs.

Time passed.

Exhaustion prevailed.

The professors slumped into a long silence.

“Anyone?” ventured the Chairman of the Bored.

Gwydion threw dagger eyes at the Chairman.

“Well, ya’ll poo-pooed my solution 4000 times already, so I won’t say it again”.

“Stop behaving like a child,” Marelda snapped. She has no tolerance for exaggeration.

Although to be fair to Gwydion, it wasn’t that big an exaggeration.

“How about this one?” the chicken offered, “Cognitive distortion is any thought pattern that takes reality and blows it up into a ridiculous story.”

“Are you having a go at me?” sneered the egg.

The chicken clucked, flattening her frustrated feathers.

“Cognitive distortion,” Marelda interjected before the chicken and egg got physical, “is the irrational interpretation of facts and foreshadows psychopathological states such as anxiety and depression.”

Creative Genius

“Golly,” muttered Lucinda, tearing another page from her compendium. “I thought we agreed that was definition of creative genius.”

“Oh, Lucinda keep up! We have a tough enough job on our hands already,” rapped the Chairman of the Bored. “Irrational?”

Marelda rummaged in her satchel and extracted a wooden pointer. She admired how it extended like an old-fashioned telescope and was as thin as a crone’s finger. She felt like the luckiest woman alive the day she found it in the dumpster behind the university canteen.

With a sweep of her hand, Marelda commanded the group to shuffle their chairs backward and then waddled to the centre of the ring.

Marelda drew a small circle in the dust on the floor. She looked at each professor, one eyeball at a time, to ensure they were paying attention.

The professors dared not breathe as Marelda drew a second, larger circle that encompassed the first. The sides of the circles touched in a way that reminded Lucinda of a cross-eyed goldfish.

Thwack.

Marelda slammed the end of her pointer into the middle of the small circle.

“This is reality.”

She heaved her lungs full of air.

“This!”

Thwack. The pointer landed in the large circle.

“Is what your fear-soaked brain makes of that reality and it’s called cognitive distortion.”

Marelda pursed her lips in a way that signalled only a fool would dispute her facts.

“The degree of distortion – the gap between the small and the big circle – is the single determinant of human effectiveness.

Exaggerating,

blaming,

belittling,

treating every issue as black and white,

catastrophising,

overthinking,

negative pre-empting.

They all make that big circle bigger.

The bigger that circle gets, the more likely humans will procrastinate and make poor decisions.

Thwack.

If that big circle expands too far, the human becomes mentally and emotionally dys-func-tion-al.”

THWACK!

The expanding bubble gum balloon in Lucinda’s imagination burst, snapping her back into the room.

“Fear does all that?” asked Lucinda.

“Yes, it does. Fear of not being good enough. Fear of failure. Fear of consequences. Humans have a lot of fears. Some are useful, most are irrational.”

“So,” Lucinda spotted a way out of their conundrum and beelined to it, “we have an answer to our unanswerable question.”

The Chairman of the Bored raised an eyebrow.

Source: Shoebox Official

An Ounce of Prevention

Lucinda flipped open her compendium, pulled a postcard from the front pocket and read it aloud.

Dear Lucinda,

For the last few weeks, I have travelled among the humans. I have vacationed here for the past century or two because it is an elixir for the soul to watch them work.

But something has gone terribly wrong.

Dallying. Dawdling. Loafing. Slacking. Slothing.

They have as many words for it as the Eskimos do for snow.

We must solve this most perplexing problem before it completely ruins my holidays.

Please respond with urgency.

Kind regards,

Chair B

Lucinda tucked the postcard back into its pocket.

“Chairman, there is a simple cure for procrastination. Humans don’t need to ask 1579+ questions of self-discovery or memorise 45 motivating mantras or buy 99 pallets of post-it notes. Although, Gwydion, I do appreciate the good intentions of your ideas.

If we…”

Lucinda stood up and walked to Meralda’s drawing. She flicked dust to conceal the small circle and drew another the same size but a short distance away from the big circle.

An involuntary cluck escaped from the chicken.

“If we make a clear separation between the reality and the distortion then the procrastination won’t be triggered. If it doesn’t happen, then we no longer need to cure it.”

“Brilliant! An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure!”

The Chairman of the Bored had spotted those words on a café sign and always wanted to use them.

Lucinda nodded to the Chairman and continued.

“If they feel procrastination coming on, then the human simply asks themselves a question; Am I Safe?

It will focus their mind on their immediate situation and drag any hidden fear out into the daylight.

If they answer yes, there will be no resistance to taking the next step.

If they answer no, they must deal with the threats and risks before trying to move forward.”

Lucinda returned to her chair.

The group returned its silence.

“But,” asked the egg, “what came first? The reality or the distortion?”

The chicken went berserk, clucking and flapping wildly as if a fox had crept into the room.

“You just can’t leave it alone, can you? It Does! Not! Matter! I have endured your mindless eggsplaining for long enough! No More!”

The egg withdrew his question. He knew that he was beaten.

Discover more about your bold mind every Monday

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