People have been calling me a lot lately worried about their procrastination. We all know that procrastination in its most toxic incarnation is just another word for fear. However, that terror can stop us in our tracks like nothing else and can paralyze our very best intentions.
But I was talking to someone the other day, who has turned it into a source a strength.
This fella said that he often likes to put things off because it creates a false sense of urgency, which forces him to get a lot done. He wanted to know if there was a name for this type of procrastination.
I told him it wasn’t procrastination at all. He seemed relieved.
I told him his method sounded incredibly strategic.
For some reason, it reminded of how we talk about addiction. Generally speaking, it’s not an addiction if you like drugs, it’s addiction if you do it to the detriment of everything else in your life.
So just because you’re putting things off, it doesn’t mean it’s a problem. If the work gets done, under the circumstances you create, then it’s incredibly useful. If procrastination leads to more significant issues: missed deadlines, unrealized goals, or just a general feeling among your teammates that you are not someone who can be counted upon, then there’s a problem.
So,if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
It’s not a problem unless it’s a problem.