Procrastination and interrupts

I am definitely not feeling to be a procrastinator but lately I found myself procrastinating a bigger task. - The very strange thing was that I was not fearing that task and I either found it to be meaningful. So I could not find a reason why I procrastinated that task.

I analyzed the situation and came to the following conclusion:
  1. I experienced a lot of interrupts before and I was already expecting the next one.
  2. To get back onto the task after an interruption can take a while if the task needs intensive concentration and therefore needs time.
  3. When too many interrupts occur it is frustrating because you waste your time with getting back to your task and before you achieve a mentionable step forward you will be interrupted again. So you work and concentrate but without progress. That is really frustrating.
  4. To avoid that frustration you stick to little tasks that can be finished between two interruptions. Those little tasks are often not so important but it is more efficient to get them finished than trying to advance in a bigger task without success.
  5. So my subconscious brain made that decision to proceed on the small tasks. And it was not procrastination! - It was improved efficiency as far as possible in that situation!

What I learn from it:
  • Eating the biggest frog first (working on the biggest task first) is not necessarily the best choice. You should schedule the biggest task at a time where you usually experience less interrupts which is not always in the morning hours.
  • You should try to get some isolation when you want to work on a bigger task. - In my working environment it is quite difficult - as I wrote earlier here - but not impossible to reduce interruptions anyway.
  • The subconscious brain tries to help you and is not just repeating bad habits learned in the past.
Related post: Why not multitasking howto.

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