In a recent paper, some colleagues wrote, “The connection between mindfulness and improved emotion regulation is certainly an intuitive one…” I agree. What seems less intuitive to many people is how these also connect to our procrastination. In fact, I think understanding this is the central thing we need to understand about procrastination.
One of my thesis students is in her last day of data collection. She has been out on the streets requesting brief interviews with people. Her questions revolve around new year’s resolutions. Do you make them? If so, what are they this year? How successful were you last year? Do you have a plan along with a goal?
“I couldn’t help it. I can resist everything except temptation” (Oscar Wilde).
“Those who restrain desire do so because theirs is weak enough to be restrained” (William Blake). What do we know about individual differences in resisting temptation?
Procrastination helps creative thinking. You might come back to it with a fresher approach if you procrastinate. These are two of 13 positive beliefs that some chronic procrastinators reported. There are some negative beliefs as well. A paradox? The truth?
The problem with self-control is that we are usually paying now for a reward later. The consequence is that we discount future rewards and give in to feel good now. How can we learn to delay gratification? Here’s some new research that might help.
If I were to name two common problems or experiences that many people share, they would be depression and procrastination. Not surprisingly, they’re related. Here’s some recent research and personal experiences that provide some insight into this relation.
The secret of motivating present self is in imagining the consequences for future self. We need to be able to go “back to the future.” You don’t have to believe me, a blog reader/podcast listener says it best! Here's a powerful anti-procrastination strategy.
A reader of my last post agreed with the points made about self-regulation failure, but noted, “when the [procrastination] habit has been 'cemented,' things are not so simple.” Another reader wrote, “Please tell more about how self-regulatory skills can be learned.” Here are some research-based strategies to strengthen executive function.
When asked how she accomplishes so much, British writer Caitlin Moran replied with “caffeine, alcohol and fear." Said in jest, at least in part, I think this statement rings true for many. What does that say about motivation?
“Despite good intentions, most goals go unfulfilled.” This is the opening line to a research article published this fall, and it’s not news to most of us. This recently published study does have some surprises in terms of why some of our best intentions fail.
Excessive concerns about making mistakes, pernicious self-doubt, harsh self-criticism, impossibly high standards or expectations for performance, a strong and chronic tendency to evaluate one’s performance as not measuring up to levels expected by oneself or others - these are features of maladaptive perfectionism that predict psychological distress.
If you ever struggle with procrastination - and face it, who doesn't? - you'll want to read this book. In fact, I will recommend it as a "must listen," and that makes it an ideal gift for sons or daughters as they head off to college and university this fall.
I’m a big advocate of clearly defined goals and goal achievement. To my surprise, I think I may have been misplacing some of the emphasis. It’s not always about the goal. It might be about the practice.
In a recent new book, psychologists argue that cognitive consistency is a basic principle of how we function. We seek to resolve any form of dissonance. Until we do, we feel the tension of hypocrisy. Is this hypocrisy an evolved strategy that fosters self-regulation?
“Illuminating the Obesity Epidemic With Mathematics” is the title of a new paper by Dr. Carson Chow. A recent New York Times article captures Chow’s conclusions succinctly, “There’s no magic bullet on this.” So, what does it take?
An article in the New York Times summarizes some compelling evidence that we can improve short-term memory that in turn improves fluid intelligence. Yet, as the author writes, “. . . cognitive exercises may prove to be up against something even more resistant to training than fluid intelligence: human nature.”
So often, self-control is portrayed along only one dimension—willpower strength. Willpower may be like a muscle, but self-control involves skill too. Here's a new book that speaks to our weakness of will.