战胜拖延症 Conquering Procrastination

战胜拖延症

Procrastination, the habit of putting tasks off to the last possible minute, can be a major problem in both your career and your personal life. Side effects include missed opportunities, 1)frenzied work hours, stress, 2)resentment, and guilt. It takes deliberate strategies to avoid becoming our own worst enemy by procrastinating on our intended actions. Here are some tips, all based on research that will keep you one step ahead of procrastination.
拖延,即习惯性地把任务拖到最后一分钟,可能是你职业生涯和个人生活的重大问题。其带来的负面影响包括错失良机、疯狂赶工、承受重压、自怨自责。拖延本打算做的事情,会使自己成为自己最强劲的敌人,要避免这种情况,我们需要采取一些有意识的策略。以下一些基于研究的秘诀,将有助于你战胜拖延这个坏习惯。

1. Time travel: How to counteract the 3)irrationality of human nature.
1. 时间旅行:如何应对人性中的非理性。

As Piers Steel makes clear in 4)temporal motivation theory and Dan Gilbert shows in his work on affective forecasting, we are not merely irrational but predictably so. We 5)discount future rewards as less important than a task at hand, particularly if it’s a more pleasant activity, and we really aren’t very good at predicting how we’ll feel in the future.
根据皮尔斯·斯蒂尔的时间动机理论以及丹·吉尔伯特有关情感预测的著作,我们不仅对当下的事物具有非理性,也倾向于非理性。我们低估未来任务的回报,认为其没有手头上的任务重要,如果当前进行着一件更令人愉快的事情时,情况更是如此。我们的确不善于预测自己未来的感受。

“Time travel” can help here. That is, we need to use 6)concrete mental images of the future more often and more accurately, to represent the future as though it were happening in the present. For example, a person who is procrastinating on saving for retirement might imagine as vividly as possible living on his or her potential retirement savings. To make a future image like this more concrete and accurate, it may be important to set out some numbers for a budget and take into account the reality of the need for, and increasing expense of, health care in old age. Planning shouldn’t be an abstract notion of “doing it tomorrow.” Think about the task in the real 7)context of the day, and think carefully about how these tasks make you feel.
在这种情况下,“时间旅行”可以帮得上忙。也就是说,我们需要更频繁、更准确地用对未来的具体臆想来代表真实的未来,就好像未来发生在眼前一样。例如,对于一个迟迟不为退休生活储蓄的人来说,他可以尽可能生动地去想象自己依靠可以存到的退休金而生活的情景。要让诸如此类的未来画面更具体、更准确,重要的是要开始做出预算,并考虑到现实的需要以及晚年日益增长的医疗开支。规划不应该是一个“明天再做”的抽象概念。想想现实情境中一天的任务,并仔细想想这些任务让你感觉如何。

2. Don’t give in to feeling good: Short-term gain, longterm pain.
2. 不要屈服于感觉良好:短期收益可能带来长期痛苦。

When self-regulation fails, it’s often because shortterm emotional repair takes 8)precedence over our longterm goals. For example, a task at hand makes us feel anxious or 9)overwhelmed, so we “give in to feel good,”seeking immediate emotional relief, and we walk away, leaving the task for tomorrow.
通常,当长远目标被短期的情感修复占了上风时,我们的自律便宣告失败。例如,当手头上的任务使我们感到焦虑或不堪重负时,我们便“屈服于感觉良好”,开始寻求即时的情感安慰,于是我们撒手不管,把任务留给明天。

Here’s where emotional intelligence is so important to procrastinating less. Learn to recognize that we can have negative emotions without 10)acting on them. 11)Stay put for a minute—don’t walk away. Don’t give in to “I’ll feel more like it tomorrow.”12)Acknowledge the negative emotions, but get started anyway. Progress on a goal provides the motivation for another step forward. Just get started; the negative emotions will pass.
这里证明了要想对付拖延,情商非常重要。要学会认识到:可以有负面情绪,但不能受制于它。停下来一分钟——不要走开。不要屈从于“我更想明天再做这事情。”承认消极情绪的存在,但无论如何要着手去做。离目标越来越近会为你不断向前提供动力。只管着手去做吧;负面情绪终会离你而去。

3. Reduce uncertainty and 13)distractions.
3. 减少犹豫和干扰。

1Planning is one thing; action is another. In fact, what can make a task 14)aversive to us when we’re simply making an intention or planning is how meaningful a goal is. The less meaningful the goal, the less likely we’ll want to do the task. However, when it’s time to act, aversive tasks—those we’re most likely to procrastinate on—are those for which we’re uncertain how to proceed. We’re most likely to procrastinate on tasks that lack structure.
规划是一回事,行动却是另一回事。事实上,当我们有某个初步打算或规划时,一想到目标意义之重大,便顿感厌恶。如果目标的意义越小,动力也越小。然而,当必须行动起来的时候,那些我们厌恶的任务——也是最有可能被拖延的——正是我们无从下手的工作。我们最有可能拖延那些缺乏条理的任务。

This means that in addition to making your task concrete, it’s important to reduce the uncertainty about how to proceed—and, when it’s time to act, to reduce available distractions as well. Shut off your e-mail, isolate yourself as much as you can, and make sure the environment around you is working to strengthen your 15)willpower and focus, not to 16)undermine your efforts. Speaking of willpower…
这意味着除了将你的任务具体化以外,减少有关如何进展的不确定性因素也非常重要——并且,在该行动的时候,减少可能使你分心事物出现。关掉你的电子信箱,尽可能地把自己隔开,并确保周 围的环境能加强你的意志力和注意力,而不是摧毁你的努力。说到意志力……

4. Willpower: How to make the most of the willpower muscle.
4. 意志力:如何最大限度地利用意志力。

A great deal of recent research clearly indicates that willpower is like a muscle. You can exhaust it more quickly than you might imagine and, when you do, you lose your ability to self-regulate your behavior. One immediate method to strengthen your resolve in order to keep you on task is to remind yourself of your values. This process of 17)self-affirmation 18)bolsters our 19)flagging reserves of willpower.
许多新近的研究明确表明,意志力就像肌肉。你可以比你想象的更迅速地消耗掉意志力,没有意志力,就失去了自我调节行为的能力。加强决心从而使你坚持行动的其中一个直接方法就是认清自己的价值。在这种自我肯定的过程中,增强自己逐渐变弱的意志力。

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