Temporal Motivation Theory (aka The Procrastination Equation)
“On the top of the equation, the numerator, we have two variables: Expectancy and Value. Expectancy refers to the odds or chance of an outcome occurring while value refers to how rewarding that outcome is. On the bottom of the equation, the denominator, we also have two variable. Impulsiveness refers to your sensitivity to delay. The more impulsive you are, the less you like to delay gratification. Finally, delay indicates how long, on average, you must wait to receive the payout, that is the expected reward. Since delay is in the bottom of the equation, the longer the delay, the less motivated we feel about taking action.” (Self-Control Slide 10)
To my fellow classmates, that struggle with procrastination here's a quick guide that helps end procrastination and helps motivate me to complete task without feeling stressed out. To overcome procrastination I must first recognize when I'm doing it, then figure out why, and lastly never give up! When I’m honest with myself, I’m able to know when I’m procrastinating. Below are some of my common warning signs: At work I tend to immediately go get coffee or check emails when sitting down to start a high-priority task, this postpones the task at hand. When I feel overwhelmed by a task I will leave the item on my To-Do list for a long time even though I know it is important. Lastly, is I tend to say “yes” to unimportant task that others ask me to do to avoid completing the important task.
What’s important is to figure out is why I am procrastinating. Usually I find the task unpleasant or find the task overwhelming. Some days I struggle with motivation and have difficulty staying focused. If I am putting off a task it’s important to find ways to motivate myself. The following ideas have been helpful to keep me motivated. By using a reward system I have been able to stay motivated and achieve goals. For example, promising myself a trip to the mall or a tasty snack once task is completed. Another motivating factor I use is to have someone else hold me accountable. I let my classmates or coworkers know what assignments I'm working on and they will encourage me to complete task. Finally, I will Identify the negative consequences of not doing the task which gives me the incentive to continue until completion.