Suarez-Orendain: Doing it tomorrow

·3 min read

AUTHOR Mark Twain or Samuel Clemens said “Never put off until tomorrow what you can do today.” I am sure his publisher met no problems with him when it came to deadlines for “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer,” and later “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn,” based on Twain’s saying.

Could it be that he was among the millions of people who made decisions or tasks in the first hour? He was maybe with those who rose with the dawn and had work done by dusk. Maybe he hated the word “delay.”

For the rest of the millions—play along with me on this—delay is a part of their lifestyle. Something in them holds them back like a TheraBand.

I have been on the other side of the fence where I was a doer. Then retirement pushed me to the other side where I joined the people who know they have to act now but wander around instead.

You do not understand this. How can you? You are Mr. Hate Delay-it, and Ms. Beat De Bell. By now you know I am talking about procrastination.

Interestingly it has the word “nation” in it, and just maybe this is one of the problems of our beloved Philippines: Delayed services among others. But I will not develop this idea. I leave it to the hard-hitting, target-getting, non-procrastinating columnists to chew on.

Maybe procrastinators feel bad that they hold up the line on the narrow road to The Goal of The Day or Week, but what can they do except say “Sorry, will do it tomorrow.” And so in spite of this notoriety, they must feel a pinch of pride on the fact that Sept. 6 is Fight Procrastination Day.

Someone did care for them in the past. But what to do in the present? Why do procrastinators keep today’s concerns for tomorrow?

To the timely rescue is the website solving procrastination.

With no further delay, here is what I learned. The article knows the heart of the great procrastinator (GP) by offering a short version, and a long one to skim through and to pick up points at will. I urge you to go to that website because I will not discuss the reasons why the GP stalls a lot. I lack the space and time. I can do this next month. Maybe.

Why the delay? Let me count some of the whys verbatim: Disconnect from future self, optimism or pessimism, self-sabotage, indecisiveness, abstract goals, anxiety, perfectionism, fear of failure, fear of negative feedback, feeling overwhelmed, and even ADHD among other reasons.

How can GPs help themselves? Oh, the usual Socratic aphorism “know thyself.” To make this easier, start with common New Year’s resolutions such as set concrete goals, find out why you postpone tasks or decisions, make daily goals, believe in your abilities, aim for good work and not perfection, and motivate yourself.

New Year’s resolutions may be a bad idea after all. As far as I know few people fulfill them. Are there maybe secret GPs among us?