Why do people procrastinate?

I tend to place unreasoned sadness, aimlessness and unproductivity on the fact that my period is nearing.

But a quick check on Clue, the app I use to track my period, tells me that no, the curse of every female-who-has-reached-puberty-but-not-yet-menopause is not nearing, and in fact isn’t due for another two weeks or so.

I have no choice but to succumb to the truth – that I am feeling aimless because I am, indeed, at this point in my life, aimless. I have 9 months to kill before my first day of university starts. Sure, I have things to do, like university applications, scholarship applications, personal projects I gave myself (learn cooking, learn a dialect, learn graphic designing, volunteer, find a job, read, write) and tasked to me by my parents (plan for a holiday, design this room in our house). But these aren’t really things I feel like doing right now, considering I have been slaving myself off to education for the past few months (or more precisely my entire life?), yet at the same time these are things I have always wanted more time to do.

So why am I procrastinating?

Why do people procrastinate?

I have often asked myself this. Why do I procrastinate on everything, even things I’m supposedly passionate about? Why is it that everything becomes like a chore when you actually get to doing it? Why do we feel like we have so much time in the world to do the things we want and need to do? What creates this illusion? Hadn’t we started measuring time in seconds, minutes, and hours, because there wasn’t enough time to go around such that we had to count every second, minute, and hour? And why do we rush? What was the purpose of life if we didn’t enjoy it? Why do we turn life into a constant struggle, why do we create expectations, standards, obligations when there were none?

By now you can see that my thoughts often run off course. In fact, it jumps. I wonder about one thing and end up with another question about something entirely different. Sometimes I wonder if I should even post these because they’re often not about anything at all. Which brings me back to aimlessness. Which perhaps answers my final question after all. We create all these standards because we want to have an end goal in mind. We needed an aim and purpose in life. Then one thing led to another (need for purpose –> chase power & fame -> Β conflicts & selfishness & calculativeness) and here we are today. In some ways an over-developed, refined and civilised world, in others still a malnourished, desperate and unbearably disparate one.

Why do I procrastinate? Perhaps because I have the privilege to do so. I have the privilege of having things to do – access to wifi and heaps of gadgets to kill my time – when I don’t want to do anything else. I have the privilege to waste my time away, because I live in an ivory tower secluded from the slums, far from the homeless and the unsheltered. I have the privilege of having food, water, education, healthcare handed to me on a silver platter, complete with a full set of cutlery. I don’t have to fight for material to stay alive, nor to receive love. I barely have to teach myself anything.

Then the guilt starts flooding in and drowns me out and now I know I have to fight to stay afloat. If not for myself, then for others.

How cruel that on a single planet, some are dying from droughts, others from flood.


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