Productive Procrastination (Parenthetically Speaking)

My personal physician Dr. Oz sent this to me.  He wanted to validate that my day dreaming was NOT a form of procrastination NOR detrimental to my well-being.

Part of my mission is to help people understand that those of us who are perceived as procrastinators have GOOD reasons for our behaviour.  Mehmet.Knows!

“You might think of daydreaming as a slacker habit, but it turns out that it’s good for your brain.  (yippi) So let your mind wander a little bit today.”

“Zoning out doesn’t mean your mind is on vacation. Just the opposite. New research involving brain scans showed that when people daydream, the brain actually works harder, and in different ways.”  (Beginning to make sense why I’m exhausted all the time!)

“Stop Paying Attention (who said I ever began)
A new study compared brain activity during two different conditions — when people played an easy game and when their minds simply wandered freely. And daydreaming lit up the brain areas that researchers expected it to, such as those areas that handle routine daily activities.”

“But, surprisingly, the activity of daydreaming also activated the lateral prefrontal cortex and the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex — the so-called executive network of the brain, where complex problem-solving happens. Which led researchers to conclude that giving your brain a break allows these higher-function areas to work on the weighty questions humming in the background of your thoughts. You know, those big things, like how to solve a problem at work, resolve an argument with your spouse, or start a new business venture.” (how to figure out how to get someone else to do the things you were going to do when you were daydreaming, resolve world peace, make plans to move to a château in the South of France and/or a Tuscan Villa)

“Make It a Habit  (I’m waaaaaaaaay ahead of the game.  It’s not a habit with me but a way of life)
The researchers suggest people encourage daily daydreaming with simple, mindless activities. Washing the dishes, knitting, doing jigsaw puzzles, or weeding the garden are all good choices.” (These researchers that came up with these were all born before WWI and never burnt their bras)

6 comments on “Productive Procrastination (Parenthetically Speaking)

  1. I thought Dr. Oz was MY personal physician!

    The “executive” portion of my brain is really working way too hard (hope it can get in on the exorbitant executive compensation thing) as I spend a LOT of time making it attend to higher-function daydreaming.

    Now I feel much better about the all the time I thought was being wasted. Thanks for the support!


  2. Dr. Oz is your Dr,?? How cool is that. I’m not a fan of TV, Oprah….etc, but I love him. He is
    so smart. I’ve watched snippets of his show. Very good at explaining. I don’t think he’s a psychiatrist.
    As far as procrastination….now does that mean I don’t have to do important things,
    pay my bills on time, turn in assignments late…because I can say I’m day dreaming:))))

    I’m a day dreamer and a dreamer, but I can also procrastinate, and I think those are two very different things. I have not addressed important issues, and it has cost me, in may ways. I also understand how doing things, like gardening, hiking, walking around taking photos, without a plan, i can come up with fresh ideas after…..
    but I have some serious things not being done, because of that ‘other’ procrastination:}}
    I just saw this article……


    • Ida,
      This much I agree with! “Telling someone who procrastinates to buy a weekly planner is like telling someone with chronic depression to just cheer up,” insists Dr. Ferrari.
      However, I think the article pathologizes procrastination to the degree that is not helpful.

      Daydreaming, I BELIEVE, is partially a function of brain wiring. Fewer linear/left brain people daydream. It is a HUGE trait of Gestalt/right brain dominant people. I am not sure if there is a direct link but there is a significantly higher proportion of “dreamers” in people that are drawn to creativity.

      It’s a fascinating topic. thank you for the link to the article. I will “think” more on it. An excellent source of productive procrastinating for me!
      xxxxx J.


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