Structured procrastination

Today, I stumbled across a fantastic concept that’s new to me, although has been around since the 90s: ‘structured procrastination’. Invented by John Perry, a professor of philosophy at Stanford, it is based on the idea that procrastinators aren’t actually doing nothing while they avoid their urgent or important work. Instead, they’re filling the time with other tasks – and often can be hugely productive.

To me, this is both an appealing theory, and one that seems to be true. If this is indeed the case, I don’t need to feel bad when I tidy my office rather than work on that rather dull press release, or indeed write this blog instead of finishing off a client project. It’s a win-win.

Clearly other people feel the same – in 2011, Perry won a well-deserved IgNobel Prize for this theory.


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