To Stop Procrastinating, Look to Science of Mood Repair – WSJ.com

brainResolutions are often doomed to failure. Procrastination and lack of willpower go hand in hand.

Willpower is like a muscle that needs to be properly exercised (prior blog on that here – with links to happiness and habit changes at the end too). Multi-tasking actually uses up your willpower. When you lack willpower, it is too easy to procrastinate. And then you’re kicking yourself for not getting it done (whatever “it” is).

In To Stop Procrastinating, Look to Science of Mood Repair – WSJ.com “Increasingly, psychologists and time-management consultants are focusing on a new strategy: helping procrastinators see how attempts at mood repair are sabotaging their efforts and learn to regulate their emotions in more productive ways. The new approach is based on several studies in the past two years showing that negative emotions can derail attempts at self-control. It fills a gap among established time-management methods, which stress behavioral changes such as adopting a new organizing system or doing exercises to build willpower.” (online article no longer available for general viewing)

So in the WSJ article above, and the willpower blog, there’s a connection between procrastination, willpower and habits. Suggestions:

4 easy items to do in the WSJ article’s sidebar:

  • Time Travel – Think about how you would feel in the future, either good, bad or both (and there’s a way to document those feelings and thoughts and send a future note to yourself about them).
  • Just get started – Action equals results
  • Easy things first – Start with an easy hurdle … when you get there, set another. Repeat.
  • Forgive yourself – Beating yourself up fuels negative feelings. Work on the positive. It all adds up.

Rather than make a resolution, simply live day to day working on the little items that truly move you forward. It you set them up to happen automatically, in the area of personal finance especially, you won’t drain your willpower and will have more energy and interest to work on other areas. Soon – good habits form.

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2 Responses to To Stop Procrastinating, Look to Science of Mood Repair – WSJ.com

  1. Larry Frank, Sr. February 15, 2015 at 8:50 pm #

    Here’s how you can trick your brain into doing something sooner … set the goal in the same week, month or year … see why here:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/04/business/if-you-want-to-meet-that-deadline-play-a-trick-on-your-mind.html?_r=1

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