The Lure Of Tomorrow & Why We Procrastinate?
As investors we can’t afford procrastinating, after all time is money, right? Then why is it so appealing to postpone the inevitable. Being an abstract thinker myself, I have a tendency to postpone activities that don’t have concrete simple steps. I find this relevant to investing because it’s pretty easy to get swamped with abstract investment ideas and forget that investing is a process (with separate steps).
If you think about investing as a process it facilitates your life in numerous ways. For example, process thinking prevents you from postponing the research of your best ideas. Additionally, by thinking this way you find out if you really like investing or just the abstract idea of making money. Finally, aligning yourself with a process driven mentality results in you committing to become a life long learner. Anyways, enough of my opinions
Article Introduction (Via NewsWeek)
Late holiday shoppers will soonbe rushing out to get the things they’d planned to buy way back in November, when they made those well-intentioned lists. And by New Year’s,people will start thinking about projects: updating that resume, cleaning out the attic, starting that exercise routine. But the sad reality is that most of us will not follow through on these commitments, and not because we’re insincere. We’ll just never get to day one. Tomorrow is always a better time to get going.
And tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow. Procrastination is a curse, and a costly one. Putting things off leads not only to lost productivity but also to all sorts of hand wringing and regrets and damaged self-esteem. For all these reasons, psychologists would love to figure out what’s going on in the mind that makes it so hard to actually do what we set out to do. Are we fundamentally misguided in the way we think about plans and effort and work? Is there some perverse habit of mind that automatically dampens our sense of urgency? Are we programmed for postponement and delay?
Article Excerpts (Via NewsWeek)
“That is, vague, abstract tasks might be easier to mentally postpone into the future than concrete tasks.”
“When you first think about the possibility of trying something new, you’re focused on why: What’s the purpose? Does it make sense for me to do this? It’s still just a distant possibility, and these are the things that matter. Only as you get closer to actually taking on the task do you start to think of the more immediate how-to details. So conversely, thinking about the how-to of a job gives it immediacy–and urgency.”
“Even though the sentence fragments really had nothing to do with the actual task, those primed for concrete thinking were much less apt to delay and postpone than were those primed for abstract thinking.”