In This Episode…
Yesterday I explained what a Current Reality Tree was and how I intended to use it to analyse why I keep putting things off. Well I did just that and in this episode I talk you through the process and share my findings about why I procrastinate and have let things slip recently.
It boils down to just two main constraints – one of which completely shocked me. Listen in to find out more.
Episode Show Notes
00:14 – A reminder why I was doing a Current Reality Tree
00:40 – A brief run through the process of using a Current Reality Tree
01:34 – My initial analysis why I was putting things off was System 1 thinking.
02:01 – The Current Reality Tree is an example of System 2 thinking.
02:15 – My cause and effect analysis using this method identified 46 dependent causes.
02:29 – I am going to talk through this Current Reality Tree for a couple of reasons: (1) It will explain the logic of the process using a working example, (2) It will allow me to hear my rationale later on when I listen back to the recording.
03:09 – The interesting thing about this analysis is that it boiled down to just 2 significant constraints as you will see.
03:47 – I highlighted 6 top tier causes for why I keep putting things off:
- I’ve developed the identity of a procrastinator.
- On some level I am being rewarded for putting things off.
- I have a lack of discipline.
- I don’t have enough energy to apply myself to my work throughout the day.
- I don’t know what to focus on.
- I avoid the tasks I think are difficult.
04:34 – A deeper dive into why I have developed the identity of a procrastinator.
05:15 – I realise I have a mindset issue around procrastination that I have to deal with. I know that will evolve as I address the other issues.
05:39 – A deeper dive into how I am being rewarded on some level for putting things off. I believe that to be true because it is a behaviour pattern I keep repeating and so there must be some positive consequence for me doing that. This might include the avoidance of the uncomfortable, confrontation or complexity.
06:33 – Exploring the causes of why I have a lack of discipline. I have become lazy because I have been settling with dong things I am comfortable with.
07:53 – I have been drifting because I have not identified what I want to do next.
08:11 – The reason why I have been drifting is because I have not defined my goals. [Make a mental note of this cause because it will appear again later on].
08:43 – Exploring why I might not have enough energy throughout the day. I realised I am probably suffering from the consequences of stress because I am trying to do too much. And that is because I am trying to do everything myself.
10:40 – I am doing everything myself because I have not built a team to support me. This is because I don’t know what I want them to do – because I don’t know what I want to do yet.
11:09 – It comes back to me not defining my goals.
11:31 – Why don’t I know what to focus on? Using this approach it once again boiled down to not defining my goals.
12:00 – Three of the six top tier causes of why I keep putting things off have come down to me not setting my goals.
12:56 – I explore why I keep avoiding things that I think are going to be difficult.
13:16 – One of my initial reasons I thought was a cause of putting things off was a form of “Mental Fog”. It didn’t appear as a top tier cause but found its way further down the cause and effect chain.
13:33 – There are three possible causes of why I avoid tasks I think are difficult.
- My concentration span is insufficient for the requirements of the task.
- I don’t think I am good enough to be able to do them.
- I tend to make the task harder than it actually is.
15:13 – The root cause for all three of these causes is that I have a fixed mindset.
15:58 – I was appalled to discover I have got a fixed mindset!
17:22 – I can see a fixed mindset is an operating system I have had for my entire life.
17:45 – After completing the Current Reality Tree Analysis, assuming my analysis is correct, I can see there are two root causes for me continually putting things off:
- I have not defined my goals
- I have a fixed mindset
18:18 – The first step is to define my goals.
18:50 – This has been a groundbreaking episode for me because I have finally got clarity on something that has probably been holding me back my entire life.