scottahill: (Default)
I have some job applications which I promised myself I'd finish tonight, but I am procrastinating. But I'm trying to figure out why I'm procrastinating, because it is more of a compulsion than a rational choice. I procrastinate even when it's something I want to do, and I'm not sure why.

One thought which is rattling around in the back of my head is that I'm afraid of *completing* the task I'm occupied with. This thought has come to mind before, and it even makes sense as something that might have developed during my graduate school years: when I was doing research, I was often at a loss as to what I should be doing, and I was too intimidated to ask my advisor for more structure in my work: that was my job, providing structure, I'm a big boy, etc. So if I had a project in front of me, something I knew needed doing, I had incentive to stretch it out as long as possible, because once it was done I would be stuck with the much more intimidating task of deciding what to do next.

This doesn't make as much sense now, because I know what to do when I finish these applications: I go to bed. But it could be a leftover habit, or it could mean that I don't want to face the harder job applications I have to write, or the teacher's work I have to do, or the cleaning I have to do, or whatever. I *should* be able to say "Finish your work and you can go do this FUN thing", but I have a hard time coming up with fun things to do (often because procrastination even kicks in with hobbies).

Speaking of finishing things, when I was little I would start to invent new languages, new games, etc, and I was content to start designing them, even if I abandoned them soon after. As I got older, though, I think I became frustrated with myself for not finishing these things I started, and so I have become reluctant to start any grand projects: musical compositions, short stories, even research projects. (One exception has been computer programs; my hard drive is littered with half-completed programs of one sort or another.) Finishing things has always been difficult for me. It's not hard to imagine why: the creative spirit is enough to start a project, but to keep a project going I need encouragement from an audience, which I don't really have. And so we come back to lack of community, eh? :)

OK, enough procrastination.


scottahill: (Default)

September 2010

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