Wednesday, March 18, 2009

A thief of time

All of us are in some way or the other guilty of procrastination. All procrastinations are not bad. Some postponement of a minor work for a more pressing work is justified. You rush to help a needy friend at the hospital and you put off your haircut to another day. Yes, it is justified as a good procrastination.. This word per se is not bad. It depends on what you defer and for what purpose. What is a minor work that can be put off is again relative and varies from person to person. Earning an extra hundred in a day for a comfortably placed man is minor in comparison to the pressing need for the same amount by a daily wage earner.
A good procrastination to my mind is not doing petty things that can wait for a real work of substance. It is a question of sense of proportion. Filing of tax returns by due date or sending the application for a seat before last date is more important than taking out the weeds from the garden or cleaning the cupboard..If we spend time doing relatively unimportant work instead of more pressing ones, we may feel we are busily occupied but we are actually underutilizing our time.
But deferring things for no reason except for laziness is bad and an unhealthy habit. Replying your mails, studying one’s lessons,visiting the doctor or a relative ailing in hospital should not be put off without adverse results sometimes. If you have real work to do, you may have to refuse to attend errands for others even if it is socially inconvenient. You can help only if you have time to spare without damage to your own pressing work. An ability say No to others is a key to avoid procrastination especially if you are short of time.
The definition in Wikipedia for procrastination is “a type of avoidance behavior which is characterized by deferment of actions or tasks to a later time. It is often cited by psychologists as a mechanism for coping with the anxiety associated with starting or completing any task or decision.”This is a bad habit and should be overcome by action.
“The main rule of coping with procrastination is: spend more time on main topics and spend less time on minor topics, despite seduction of various kinds.


  1. Very nice article. As mentioned, any procrastination due to laziness should be avoided. Well written.

  2. Very well-written. The test is in selecting which ones to consider major topics and which ones minor.

    Thanks and best wishes :)

  3. A very nice piece, that has come at the right time for me :)