Thought for the Day – William James on Procrastination

Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task.”– William James

It’s procrastination season at our home; that time of year when Anna and I find plenty of other things we’d rather do than our taxes. As Benjamin Franklin famously said, “In this world nothing is certain but death and taxes.” For us, they seem one and the same. Avoidance begets fatigue and finally a symbolic death as April 15th rapidly approaches. I’ve long been a friend of the fatigue brought on by procrastination. In fact, I procrastinated my way out of delivering a final paper for a Climatology class in college. After more than thirty years, it remains hopelessly overdue. I still think about that missed commitment and it bothers me. In a way, procrastination itself is a tax, one that’s paid for by fatigue and a looming sense of failure. The good news is that when we tackle that thing we’ve been avoiding, we get a refund of energy. And who’s ever turned down a refund?

Your thoughts? Is there something you’ve been paying a tax on by avoiding?

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