Procrastination: Not Just for Computer Geeks
Procrastination is not just a disease of computer geeks. It's a condition that affects society as a whole.
[If you're not familiar with procrastination - and even if you are - check out WIKIPEDIA for more information.]
This post is a response to this article, so feel free to read it as well.
Long, long ago, as a young child, I received a computer. It was a marvelous creation of abstract production (286, 1MB RAM, 40MB HDD). You could sit me down in front of a DOS game and forget about me. However, my parents had a method, the "hour method." During this brief hour, I could play to my heart's content, and I maximized my productivity. No procrastination, no wasted time.
Later, when I was older, no one rationed my computer time. However, the computer itself did. It would frequently break (in the early Windows days), or it would make me wait with its slow hard drive. There was still no time for procrastination because you were either impatiently waiting or making the most of what you were waiting for.
Today? Everything is at your fingertips, countless distractions demand your attention, things want to be touched and bought with your money, and your text editor has numerous attractive features, eager to help you write a single sentence. Friends and open projects penetrate all layers of your consciousness, distracting and diverting your attention from your current task. Isn't this the primary problem of procrastination?
| Wouldn't it suffice to disconnect from everything, plan your actions so that you can focus on one thing? I'm writing this text in Pyroom. I know that if I had my desktop screen, I'd be glancing at the clock, checking my RSS feeds, wondering if anyone wrote to me or sent an urgent email. | Perhaps the overload of possibilities and technologies embraced by "tech-savvy" people, including computer geeks, simply causes the mind to jump from one state to another, like an electron stimulated by photons.
Maybe the nature of modern times and the absence of minimalism result in a lack of ironclad determination. We don't do things with 100% passion, so procrastination thrives.
Procrastination is a "disease" affecting society as a whole, including computer geeks.
Who is a computer geek, anyway?
Strictly speaking, a computer geek is a computer science graduate without a job, right after graduation, when there's still no work. But there are few such people. Every job distorts the meaning of a computer geek, turning them into something else: an administrator, hardware specialist, programmer. But for a while, they're computer geeks.
So, the statement that only computer geeks suffer from procrastination, as mentioned in this article, may be true but highly controversial.
It's human nature to postpone difficult tasks. It's easier to do simple things that require little attention. But this eventually accumulates and frustrates us.
It's not right to categorically label procrastination as a bad phenomenon. It depends on the situation. Why should everyone be organized and diligent? Why force oneself to do something they dislike? Procrastination can be a personal choice, and this criterion should be considered.
If you don't feel like doing something, there are many ways to overcome it. From the simplest method: just do it, to sophisticated task management systems like GTD, ZTD, and probably some fantastic apps that interrupt your relaxation at the most inappropriate times.
Informatycy (a term used in the article) might also be aware of market conditions, knowing that they are sometimes underpaid. Some tasks can be automated, or they become routine. This naturally leads to procrastination and negligence because why bother if you're earning too little? Many people work in fields that aren't their calling, leading to a lack of enthusiasm. Just as an avid angler eagerly grabs a fishing rod, anyone who discovers their calling will do everything without hesitation, free from procrastination and reluctance.
Motivation and Support Systems
| Even the most elaborate task management systems are useless against internal resistance and a lack of motivation. If you work a regular job, you know that supervisors go to great lengths to maximize employee productivity. In physical work, there are no breaks; the entire infrastructure is designed for human work. In intellectual work, traffic, time monitoring, and task execution every second watch over your every move, even your lunch. | Without adequate motivation, whether financial or otherwise (satisfaction, prestige), a boring job remains boring and unproductive. Similarly, if an employee has no desire to work (for internal reasons), no punishment will motivate them.
Google dedicates 20% of an employee's time to work they come up with themselves and WANT to do. Isn't this one of the simplest ways to make work enjoyable and push procrastination far away?
Maybe those so-called "computer geeks" from the article are self-appointed workers who don't want to work the way they've prescribed, or they made a wrong choice because instead of creating an innovative workspace or pursuing work they love, they've brought their work into their private lives and now refuse to work in any other way.