The Other Side of Procrastination- Loving to Work Too Much
How is it possible to love to work and do it very well when you get down to it, but procastinate so much anyways? The answer to this is very simple.
I am mostly known as a very hardworking person, and someone who you go to “when-y0u-want-to-get-sh*t-done”. But very recently, one of start-up founders who I am working for told me he would’ve loved to sue a friend of my mine who recommended me to him (Of course it was a joke and he didn’t mean it). The reason why he was saying this was that I was pushing down the deadlines, was not producing the desired work, and in general, it didn’t seem like I was doing much. And really, I wasn’t doing much.
I started to get worried, because the reason why I wasn’t doing much was because I was procrastinating most of the time, or sleeping, reading, walking, doing whatever I can not to work. This has never happened to me, because I was usually the person that “goes to bed not when I am tired, but when I am done”. Since few months ago this changed, and I think I realised why this happened.
I like to work too much.
I do! Unconsciously, I think I started to get afraid that the work will end and I will have nothing to do FOR REAL. I believe that this is a usual thing over-doers have. We cannot sit down without having anything to do, we need to go out there, do that, show up, do this and that. Since I’ve dropped out of architecture (very demanding degree) and changed to Business (so not demanding according to everyone), my mind got an impulse that said “ You need to make sure you’re busy. Now it will be you who will be getting projects- independent from school”. So whenever I would get a project to do outside of school I would get so excited and happy and enthusiastic. Some time would pass and the excitement would go down. My productivity and engagement would drop dramatically and I would clearly start slacking. This would lead to confusion, unhappiness, stress and throughs like “Is it me that has the problem, and if it is, what is the problem?”. I would never see the answer.
Now I do know the problem. I was too afraid to loose the job. I was to afraid to say I have nothing to do when it will be over. Be it a big project, an internship, or small tasks. Unconsciously, I was trying to play it safe, and extend the time of uncertainty to longer, so that I always “have so much to do” and stay busy. Realising this right now, I see how silly it is. I was letting people down. Being seen as irresponsible and under-performing. After living with myself for 20 years, I know this is not who I am. And knowing the cause, I can deal with the problem easily.
It will take a change in a mindset. It will take some mental work that will not be easier. I will have to learn how to be disciplined, fill my time with other things when I am done with projects. Not being afraid of finishing something, seeing it as an opportunity for something new, better and cooler. I need to start being accountable to myself for everything that is FINISHED, not to my TO-DO list. Because in this case, the result matters more than the journey (as you need to get to that point somehow).
What do you think about the whole issue? I would like to share views and ideas with those who have the same problem, managed to solve it, or think that this is all BS and it is no big deal, I’d still like to hear it.
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