“I’ll think of it tomorrow, at Tara. I can stand it then. Tomorrow, I’ll think of some way to get him back. After all, tomorrow is another day.”
–Scarlett O’Hara, Gone With The Wind
I suppose it is quite apt that Scarlett O’ Hara should be amongst my favourite fictional characters. I find shades of her in myself–certainly her tendency to procrastinate is something I can relate to very well.
In Scarlett O’ Hara’s case, the procrastination is at least an attempt to put off something that she would rather just never face up to, something unpleasant or something she deeply fears. My brand of procrastination is more in the nature of evasion–of things that are not even really unpleasant. For instance, I may have been meaning to call a friend for several days but all too often just never get around to doing it. And then I wince when I see a call coming on my phone from that friend–I know I am in for an earful and my feeble” Oh, I was just going to call you” will be treated with the contempt it deserves. Thankfully my long-suffering friends are used enough to my ways to not mind.
What can I put it down to? Laziness? Maybe. Or maybe it is just that I am–in my heart of hearts–not too fond of talking on the phone and hence avoid doing it unless I have to?
And while we’re on the topic, let me also bring up the example of this blogathon itself. Technically, it was not impossible for me to be done with my daily post during the day itself. In practice though, that just never happened. I found myself busy with a million things all through the day. When I did manage to find time, I found I just did not know what to write about.
Ultimately, almost all my posts–including this very post– got started in late evening. The ideas would rush forth only when I would start running out of time. I would type furiously to be able to hit publish in time. I amazed myself by finishing some posts in under half an hour–I never knew I would be able to do that! I probably never would if there had been no deadline. Often the next day I would spot a cringe-making typo or two (there were two in yesterday’s post) in the previous post and correct them!
I have been thinking about this. Do I actually like to work under pressure? Or maybe I secretly like the thrill of having to rush against time, the adrenaline rush of managing to finish a task just in time? Or maybe this happens with other people too? I read somewhere that procrastination and perfectionism often go hand in hand– so if you’re afraid that whatever you want to write about is not going to be really good, you will put off writing it till the last moment. Hmm, that makes sense.
‘Procrastination’ was a spare-prompt in this blogathon and I am glad I decided to do a post on it because it made me really introspect. On a lighter note, I am also glad I managed to do it while there was still time. What an irony that would have been–putting off doing a post on procrastination till the very last day 😉