Procrastination: It Can Put Off Your Desired Trading Results
There it is, that unfinished Macro Trade Plan that you committed to finishing before your next live trade, that stack of books that you promised yourself you’d read and the list of unfinished to-dos that go back weeks. You find yourself thinking, “What is wrong with me, why can’t I follow through with at least the stuff that is important?” Yes, this is all too familiar because it happens over and over, and you may feel powerless to stop it. In fact, it may be the story of your life. You’ve missed deadlines, squandered resources and embarrassed yourself all because you didn’t follow through… you procrastinate.
Procrastination – putting something off till a later time or date – appears to haunt many a trader’s life. It can ease up on you like a fog rolling in, and before you know it you can’t clearly see the path to getting the results that you want. If you’ve ever said something like, “I’ll do it when I get around to it” or “tomorrow I’ll feel better about it” or “I’m more creative when I’m close to deadline,” then you have suffered with procrastination. In fact, you may be plagued by this so much that you think nothing can be done about it. However, the reality is that procrastinators are made not born.
Let’s look at procrastination little more closely. Often procrastination begins early in life and is related to parents that are authoritarian and controlling. As a consequence of this environment, children become more anxious about performing and hyper-sensitive concerning criticism and judgement from others. This creates an attitude of self-incrimination that anticipates a poor performance which causes the individual to procrastinate resulting in a self-fulfilling prophecy as they have little time left and have allocated insufficient resources to accomplish their task. The anxiety and fear associated with this behavior debilitates their resolve and often generates what appears to be an insurmountable barrier that separates them from carrying out an intention. When left unchecked, this situation can create a depression filled life that is strewn with the ghosts of things that could have been but never were.
Though the above scenario is common, procrastination has affected just about everyone at one time or another. Essentially there are two types:
1) Deadline Related Procrastination is commonly experienced by students and professionals when that important paper or expense report is due. The deadline type is a little easier to tackle and subdue.
2) Commitment Related Procrastination affects those who keep putting off making a desired change or personal accomplishment such as completing a Macro Trade Plan or writing a book or taking up a hobby. People that consider themselves to have good self-discipline and to have conquered deadline procrastination would probably be hard pressed, if they are honest, not to admit to struggling with some form of commitment procrastination.
It doesn’t have to be that way. It may not be all your fault but it is all your responsibility. You can change; however, it depends on how badly you want to change.