December 31, 2006

Procrastination

from Solving Procrastination: an application of Flow by Kevin Chiu

Chiu’s model is of interest to me because if it is correct, procrastination is a function of perceived ability – therefore, procrastination can be caused by low self-esteem.

Please note that “Flow” in this case refers specifically to the mental state proposed by psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. “Flow” corresponds with the idea of “being in the zone”, and perhaps with “no-mind” in Zen.

Chiu suggests that “solving procrastination” involves ordering tasks according to perceived difficulty, then starting at the bottom and working up.

I would suggest that anything that reduces self-absorption, even if it is not immediately useful, will increase one’s perceived ability. For instance, someone who meditates regularly is likely to feel confident as an effect of being less anxious and self-centred. Therefore they are less likely to procrastinate because of not feeling up to a particular task.

New Year’s resolutions, anyone?


- 8 comments by 1 or more people Not publicly viewable

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  1. Michael S.

    Can your attempts at unravelling the mysteries of procrastination be classified as procrastination??

    Nevertheless very interesting.

    31 Dec 2006, 18:21

  2. Hell yes it can!! From a self confessed (and proud of it) procrastinator I applaud your procrastination being taken to new levels!

    31 Dec 2006, 19:34

  3. Joe

    Indeed, I find the irony delightful.

    01 Jan 2007, 02:00

  4. David Metcalfe

    I’m still trying to get over the fact that Mr Chiu uses Wikipedia as a reference in the same way as he might cite a peer reviewed paper..

    01 Jan 2007, 14:38

  5. Joe

    Scandalous.

    03 Jan 2007, 11:27

  6. Is it just me, or does that all seem blatantly obvious?

    I mean, once someone’s pointed it out.

    Logical simplicity

    23 Jan 2007, 12:14

  7. Justin

    I meant to say the same thing last week…

    06 Mar 2007, 05:09

  8. Kevin

    Hey, you might want to update that URL: http://kevinchiu.org/kevin_chiu_procrastination.pdf

    The washington.edu website might disappear when I graduate!

    17 Mar 2007, 10:28


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