Procrastinators Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from chronic procrastination.

too many choices

I've been reading the book Blink by Gladwell and came across a very interesting marketing study that was done that I feel most certainly pertains to the 'flavor' of procrastination that rears it's ugly head by making us paralized when we feel we have too much to do or too many options to choose from.

Essentially the marketer set up two booths and ran tast tests. One booth had 6 types of jam. One booth had 24 types of jam.  The booth with 6 types of jam sold to 30%  of the people to did the taste test. The booth with 24 types of jam (you probably guessed it!) - sold to only 3% of the people who did that taste test.  So if "normal" folks are overwhelmed and indecisive in the face of too many options imagine how someone with the 'overwhelm flavor' of procrastination might fare!?

Ok to get to my point...Lately I've experienced some success with my microplan-microburst-assess process lately (when I work it). I discussed in another thread why I thought this technique was helpful to me for various reasons.  The thought ocurred to me last night that by doing a microplan to limit my next work session to 2-4 distinct actionable items I was effectively going from a '24 variety jam stand' to a '2-4 variety jam stand'. Hence I was able to take action much easier.

It constantly amazes me how we can be so blind to the actions that we instinctively do. I'm going to keep digging though until I've found tools to thwart my weaknesses!

The radar, sir! It appears to be...jammed!


Despite the fight against procrastination, there's always time for a Spaceballs quote ;)

That completely makes sense, though. Choices are both wonderful and intimidating. I have a hard time figuring out what my goals actually ARE and second guess myself all the time. While I would hate to live in the days where career choices were severely limited, it often IS easier when there are a limited number of choices.

As a. . .decently logical and scientific person, I feel like I should gather as much information as I can before I form a valid opinion. So if I were at the stand, I would probably not be satisfied until I had tried all 24 jams and decided which I liked best. Sometimes I feel I have to put in 150% like that and as a result don't do it because it is then large and overwhelming. As much as I feel "incomplete" just doing a fraction of a task, the fraction DOES often get done, and these slowly build. I hope this makes sense!

Nice find, Crazybug! And good point too, Agnus. I think we all get. . ."jammed" from time to time.

Analysis Paralysis

as a scientist I'm prone to the exact same problem. I never could understand people who were of one opinion. After all the research I do on a topic I could argue from every side and support any opinion. Often this leaves me arguing with myself, not a productive place to be, plus people look at you strangely on the street.;)


interesting: "jam"

LOL that the researchers used jam for this experiment!  That's a perfect metaphor for what happens in my brain when I can't decide. Options float along the stream of time and at a certain point - usually a narrowing of the time available to act on them - there's a giant logjam. At that point my indecision has led to inaction and is headed for paralysis.  My only hope is to admit my jam (Step 1), seek out the Lumberjack that solve my problem (Step 2), and let him (Step 3).

Thanks, I needed to hear myself say that! Now I wonder if the Higher Power of my understanding will mind if I call him Lord Lumberjack today...:D


Red currant on sourdough rye bread.


Agnus. Your post cracked me up. That's the first smile I'v had in days. Thank you!!!  No I don't think the HP would mind the new moniker.  He's got to have a sense of humor.


The spaceballs quote was classic too!  Another smile for the night.

You PA folks sure are awesome and I'm so thankful for all of you and for learing from all of the 'flavors' of P out there. :)