I don’t really suffer from procrastination, and never have. I actually suffer from what might be called the opposite condition, what I call Polyploytation, and it’s related malady, Mission Creep.
We are probably all familiar with Mission Creep so there’s no need to define that term.
Polyploytation is the habit of taking on far too many projects in a short or restricted period of time which of course means all such projects tend to interfere with one another (at some point) thereby inevitably restricting your overall productivity and efficiency at any given endeavour.
At its very worst it even prevents you from ever really achieving any of your ultimate end goals because each new goal interferes with accomplishing and finishing any and all previous goals.
For instance I might be trying to complete a song, a short story, a chapter in one of my novels, run an experiment, work a case, write something for a client, do an analysis, and work on an invention all within a one to two week period. That’s not even to mention personal obligations such as homeschooling my children or clearing land or repairing something around the house. A virtual impossibility and a terrific scattering of concentration and achievement.
Some people nowadays would say it is related to multitasking (though multitasking is an incredibly inaccurate term for even that concept, and a really idiotic misnomer for an idiotic idea and process) although polyploytation is not in any real way related to multitasking.
Polyploytation is really a dilution, dissolution, and dissipation of achievement by attempting to do far too many important things in far too short a period of time. That has been my lifelong problem and only in the past ten years or so have I begun to master it and only recently have I truly mastered it.
The secret to mastering polyploytation is to allow yourself to attempt and finish only one important enterprise or “ploy” at a time and to set and fulfill very regimented and rigid timelines of operation. Each ploy is worked separately and with a definite and well regulated set of time-frames for the beginning, middle, and end of each project. You finish one ploy before attempting another.
Then when other devices, ideas, inventions, projects, and ploys appear in your mind (and if you are like me they inevitably and often will) you simply make notes and sketches about them and then store those new ploys out of the way until you finish your current ploy. At that time you can consider which new ploy to undertake. It seems in theory a simple habit to master, and it is in actual practice, but if you are like me and a lifelong poly-ployter this is a habit which takes a long time to fully master. Nevertheless it can be done with self-discipline, determination, and focus upon your new habit. Which I call Uniploytation.
So that was my problem and how I conquered it.
Some people though do have a genuine problem with procrastination. My wife is this way and she is now only slowly working her way out of that miresome morass. As I had to work my way out of the meandering Wilderness of Polyploytation.
If you are by nature a procrastinator then here is a very good little article on a simple method of habit change which will conquer habitual procrastination.
For are we all not merely the self-established victims of our own inferior habits until we decide the break the yoke of them?