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I’ve got 99 problems and they are all because I procrastinated

rock bottom Jasmine Simmons Contributing Writer


here are six stages to procrastination. False security--“I have plenty of time;” laxness, excuses--“I’m busy right now;” denial-- “I won’t sleep until this is done;”, crisis--“I’ll never procrasImage of Jasmine by Heather Lashun tinate again” and repeat. I’m currently on stage five of this wretched cycle, CRISIS--I’ll NEVER procrastinate again! Last article, I told myself, “Jas, you need to start developing the concept much earlier and then you’ll produce something mind-blowingly epic. There is a serious correlation between achieving perfectionism and engaging in procrastination. I spent an entire two months curating a captivating perspective of an action oriented community in Greensboro. And at the end of those two months all I had to show

procrastination revolves in a vicious cycle that we swear will end

for it were digitally crumbled up attempts residing in the wastebin of disreputable writing. On top of that, in my mind I withdrew some of my accountability points with my editor, Tony Bates. I’ve honestly never had this problem before. When I met Tony and we discussed contributing to this illustrious magazine clutched betwixt your fingers, I warned him I’m a procrastinator when it comes to writing, but I also assured him I always delivered on time. I can’t deny--it’s an exhilarating experience to create a piece when the pressure is on, but in this instance I’ve hit rock bottom. I totally disrespected my deadline. “Procrastination Expert” Joseph Ferrari, Ph.D., labeled three different types of procrastinators in Psychology Today: [1] Arousal types, or thrill-seekers, who wait to the last minute for the euphoric rush; [2] Avoiders, who may be avoiding fear of failure or success, but in either case are very concerned with what others think of them; they would rather have others think they lack effort than ability;

the outcome of events. Do you identify with any of these procrastination profiles?--I know I’m a crossbreed of all three! The article concludes with a glimmer of hope for us chronic procrastinators stating, “Procrastinators can change their behavior... it can be done with highly structured cognitive behavioral therapy.” Highly structured cognitive behavioral therapy??? Eek! That seems excessive. We all put off activities like paying bills on time, working out, or changing eating habits and the procrastination revolves in a vicious cycle that we swear will end. But we forget that we are all equipped with the grandiose skill of decision making. We can decide to alter unwanted ritualistic attributes and restructure our habits into desirable ones. First it begins with an S.O.S. I sought out some advice or rather “highly structured cognitive behavioral therapy” and came up with these anti-procrastination aids for the next time you & I find ourselves in a state of panic. Take note of the advantages. Fold a piece of paper in half. On one side, list all of the benefits of tackling that task now. On the other side, write the possible consequences of putting it off. Make sure your chart is in a visible location so you don’t forget or ignore your reasons to not procrastinate. Summon your parental discipline and reward yourself with incentives. Use your siren song, albeit Orange is the New Black, saltrimmed Margaritas, afternoon napping, or online shopping to motivate you to work for a certain amount of time. It is imperative that you respect yourself enough to take this tactic seriously. Phone a friend. Ask someone to help you complete the task. Responsibility and accountability are two great motivators. Also, collaborating with friends helps sprout fresh ideas and talking about the process helps keep you on track. I get giddy about sharing my personal writing transition via this publication. It mentally challenges me and more importantly forces me to analyze myself. To make a power move to own your own, to YOLO, to rebel against complacency is a daunting journey filled with several stresses, creative blocks and bouts of procrastination for anyone. I’m learning and reflecting on this journey to self-empowerment. I’m deciding to be disciplined enough to stop procrastinating and striving for perfection. We’re all a work in progress. I said all of that to say this...procrastination is like masturbation, you’re only --well...you get the rest.

[3] Decisional procrastinators, who cannot make a decision. Not making a decision absolves procrastinators of responsibility for 21

Profile for We Are Greensboro

April/May 2014  

We Are Greensboro magazine is dedicated to serving our community by supporting our local businesses, arts & events. KEEP IT LOCAL

April/May 2014  

We Are Greensboro magazine is dedicated to serving our community by supporting our local businesses, arts & events. KEEP IT LOCAL