I’m a chronic procrastinator. I have friends who are the same… but it’s not the same for them. An incident from a year ago:
In a group text, I confess that I’m watching Netflix instead of working on my paper that’s due on Monday. They confess they are doing the same. But when I confide that not even Netflix is enjoyable — that I feel a constant stressful pressure on my shoulders even just lying in bed watching TV, because I know I should be writing — they are perplexed by this. They’re procrastinating, too, but it’s not something that causes them anxiety.
The next weekend, I decide to get an early start. I have two three-page papers due on Monday. I finish one of them on Thursday night, and the other on Friday morning. Leaving me with three days of absolute freedom.
I cannot describe the relief it felt to not have a deadline weighing on me.
But then the next weekend came, and I fell back into that same habit of procrastination, week after week. Friday morning would come, and I knew what I needed to get done by Monday, and I now knew what a waterfall or relief it would be to finish early.
Knowing these things did not help me to not procrastinate.
If anything, knowing how much better I would feel to get finished early, only added more pressure.
‘Procrastinator’ might as well be synonymous with ‘masochist.’