Tuesday, May 19, 2009

The Now Habit

It would be premature to say The Now Habit (Neil Fiore, 2007 ed.) changed my life. I just finished it yesterday, after all. But I do think it solidified my thinking on issues I was already learning how to deal with and gave me some good new strategies as I try to be more productive and build a better life for myself.

Unlike a lot of books on procrastination, The Now Habit examines the root causes of the problem instead of just teaching a new system for your calendar and to-do list. And in Fiore's view, being a procrastinator doesn't mean you're lazy, but that you've learned a less than optimal coping strategy for dealing with perfectionism, fear of failure, and/or being stuck in a situation where you feel powerless. So he asks you to examine the reasons you're putting something off and offers strategies to help you feel safer and/or more powerful. Also, since a common reason for procrastination is the fear that you'll never get to relax again, his system requires you to schedule breaks and time for play first. I'd stumbled across that idea on my own. I have a daily list for the projects and tasks I'm working on outside work, and once I've crossed everything off for the day, I'm done. Instead of working on tomorrow's work, I curl up with a book or watch fun TV, and it's downright reinvigorating.

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