Monday, January 13, 2014

A professional procrastinator, a fail multitasker, or acute introvert?

I do everything to procrastinate, especially for the things I consider as important to me. I tend to put these supposed to be important things aside, for later on, for a better time, a quieter time, time when I get to dedicate all my attention to whatever the important thing is, undivided.

Honestly, I should've known better.
Such time is rare, hardly ever easily presented before me, and when it does, I usually manage to find a way to distract myself and doing something else instead.

No question about the importance because I know how important these things are for me. And no questions about whether I'm procrastinating because I am. I am one of those successful procrastinators. Always been one. The question is why.

Putting off something that I don't like doing is no mystery. I'd procrastinate simply because I don't want to do it. But procrastinating something I like doing and consider important, makes me wonder.

I finally found out that all these important things I tend to procrastinate, I usually get them done in the unlikeliest times. The realization came down on me one day during a family gathering, when there were about fifteen people in the room, including children running around, with all the people talking. I remember I went to my room to get my drawing book, and then start drawing in the middle of the conversation around me. It was one of the things that I've been planning to do, been wanting to do, for weeks, but was kept put off because 'I couldn't find the right time to do it'. There's always some other works to do, some other house chores waiting, some phone calls to make, emails to send, and when I finally got a break and some alone time, there would be a book to read, or a daydreaming to do.

I noticed that this also happens to my plan to write (which usually was done while I'm baking a cake, or during lunch break at the office, instead of a quiet time before I sleep at night). The same thing happens to the stack of article links piled up in my evernote, saved for later to read. The plan is to read the articles before sleeping. I imagined it would be really nice to sit on my bed with my laptop, reading all the articles in silence.

The reality is, I usually finished reading most of them while I'm on the train on my way to the office. Yes, inside the crowded train, among the chaotic rush of people jammed into the confined space, swaying from time to time, leaning involuntarily to other people's shoulders or armpits because there simply is no room left to complain.

I started to think that this is probably something to do with my inability to actually face myself.

I enjoy being alone, being with my own company. But writing, and drawing, is an activity that expose us to ourselves. Or the other way round. The point is, these activities will lead you to find whatever it is hidden under the lid of your mind, and sometimes, your heart.

While I always feel the presence of other people around me when I'm writing or drawing as an intrusion to my privacy (this is me being too territorial), I started to notice that their presence ease the tension you cannot avoid to occur during the encounter with whatever it is hidden under the lid of your mind and heart. The presence of other people distract you from the real focus.

I don't know if it's a good thing though. Because, well, you face what you need to face and you just have to do it from time to time. You cannot runaway or hide forever, or pretending to forget about the things that you want to do. Things that you know you really really want to do, things that you cannot get your mind off of them no matter how hard you try avoiding them.

Or maybe I'm just too good at multitasking that I cannot help doing it whenever I get a chance to.
(*sounds very unlikely)

Either that, or I simply don't like people (as some people accused me of doing). So it's actually a good tactic to be present during any kind of gathering, without actually being present.

I don't think I'm that evil though.

So that leaves me with a question hanging: am I actually a professional procrastinator, a fail multitasker, or an acute introvert?

2.28 am, Tuesday early in the morning.
Such a deep, life changing question to ask in such an interesting hours.