We’ve all heard of procrastination; waiting until the last minute to catch up with pressing tasks. This often leads to subpar, incomplete, and even low-quality outputs. The antidote would be starting on our work earlier than the actual cut-off time. So, it could show off your full potential. However, studies say that one’s quest to beat procrastination may be going too far which will cause you to fall into the depths of precrastination.
Study says ‘precrastination’ is just as dangerous as procrastination
A psychology professor at the University of California David Rosenbaum had a study that focuses on procrastination and precrastination. In his research, he pointed out that procrastination has already become a well-known tendency. He, then, proceeded to note that humans and animals alike have already demonstrated the effects of precrastination.
He revealed it in an analogous tendency he called the mere-urgency effect. Precrastination involves the tendency to rush too quickly into tasks which, much like procrastination, results in subpar, incomplete, and even low-quality outputs. In other words, haste makes waste.
Procrastination versus Precrastination
A procrastinator would leave an inbox full of emails untouched until the next day. A precrastinator, on the other hand, would read and respond to each of the emails first thing in the morning. Even if those emails remained deemed as unimportant, they would choose to clear them off as soon as possible. In some cases, this can deplete the precious energy they might need for a more urgent and significant task later on.
Why do people suffer from precrastination?
In Rosenbaum’s research, he states that for the most part, these people feel as if they can’t resist a low-hanging fruit. Since something remains immediately available to them, they are instinctively wired to go for it. When completing simple short-term tasks, you think about, “I can wrap this up in a few minutes. Why shouldn’t I do it now?”
The downside of precrastination.
They have personality traits such as conscientiousness, eagerness to please others, and high energy. These traits predict behaviors of precrastinators but the evolution behind them remains universal. Of course, they face their own downfall similar to procrastinators. The downside of precrastination comes when in a rush to finish, they encounter a higher chance of doing work incompletely and inaccurately.
Reminding employers something of relevance.
Rosenbaum notes in his research that precrastinators should practice setting trivial things aside and learn that doing so is okay. He, then, pointed out that this could help them diminish the requirement of huge mental energy later that day. The professor also argued that managers and employers would be wise to acknowledge that it isn’t healthy for others to do everything as quickly as possible.
“It should be agreed in our society that it’s okay to smell the flowers. To be deliberate, mindful, and to be allowed to slow down.”
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Angela Grace P. Baltan is a Communication graduate from Colegio de San Juan de Letran. She doesn’t hesitate to be opinionated in analyzing movies and television series. As a writer, she uses her articles to advocate for feminism, gender equality, and mental health among others.