Quick book review: Solving the Procrastination Puzzle by Timothy A. Pychyl

The book is an easy read, but it has enough information to understand better why we procrastinate (leave things for later). This way, you can at least be an informed procrastinator. It is also well written and pleasant to read.

At the end of the day, it all comes down to discipline anyway. There is no secret formula nor a perfect trick. However, reading it can help to focus your energy strategically when it comes to reduce procrastination.

The book can be summarized into the following ideas:

  1. Delaying something does not equal to procrastinate. A delay can be a simple delay, but procrastination is when you actively postpone something.
  2. Procrastination costs. Being aware makes it easier to stop delaying work.
  3. You don’t have to feel good to work. Indeed, you should work even when not feeling like it.
  4. You won’t feel like doing it tomorrow. Period.
  5. All these phrases we say to «defend» our procrastination are rationalizations. Be aware of them and stop repeating them.
  6. Just get started. Now.
  7. Be prepared to deal with distractions, obstacles and setbacks.
  8. Do the hardest things while you still have willpower. Willpower is limited and at some point will end.
  9. Your personality might be leading you into procrastination, but you can adapt.
  10. Stop saying «it will only take a minute». It won’t.

I also appreciated the book being so small. One can read it in one single day and then go back to work which is what we were trying to avoid. Would recommend it. Will recommend it.