I can safely say that everyone in their lives has procrastinated at least once Maybe some are lifetime procrastinators (if this is you, finish your task before continuing and thank me later). I know I used to procrastinate because it gave me pleasure at the current moment. You know who got the short end of the stick, my future self. Yes, the person who cleaned up my messes. I am going to bore you with a story about washing dishes that got me thinking about procrastination.
One time I decided to leave the dishes pile up and told myself I will wash it the next morning. The next morning, I look at the pile and told myself, “Yeah, I’ll wash it when I get home.” Eventually a person runs out of dishes right? When I finally ran out of dishes (two days later), I had a dish washing marathon. As I was washing these dishes I was thinking about why I didn’t wash them immediately. It got me thinking about my present self and future self as two different people (I’ll be honest, I am a fan of Back to the Future). It made me wonder if I had considered about my future self, would I have washed the dishes immediately.
What if I could meet my future self, would he punch me in the face or shake hands with me. Everyone goes out of their ways to help others but we can’t forget about the most important person. Whenever I see tedious tasks where procrastination seems more desirable, I tell myself “If I do it now, my future self can enjoy the rest of his day.” With that mindset, I almost got rid of procrastination completely. Next time you feel like procrastinating, think about helping your future self. Think of your future self as a stranger who needs your help. That worked for me and I hope it might work for you. Here are some thoughts you should consider for your future self:
- Does my future self have enough money to retire?
- Is my future self going to be healthy?
- Is my future self going to be happy?
- Is my future self going to thank me someday?
Don’t forget to give your past-self a pat-on-the-back for reaping the benefits.
For any procrastinators that actually stopped reading, finished their task, and then finished this article, give your past-self a pat-on-the-back. From now on, before procrastinating think about your future-self.