Ugh, head shake, and drat. I cannot think of any single thing that causes me to procrastinate more than paperwork does. The topic itself is quite interesting because although it seems contradictory, I really enjoy being organized!
Since I’m on a rant-tangent, I might as well bring up my general dislike for people that choose to identify themselves as being an “entrepreneur”, a “go-getter”, a “tell it like it is type”, or a “free spirit”. In my opinion, titles such as these should be bestowed upon a person; they should not be proclaimed by oneself.
Knowing this, I must apologize in advance for what I am about to proclaim:
When it comes to doing things, I strive for perfection.
Whereas some of you might construe this statement as being one coming from a braggart, you are way off base. No sir, people that possess perfectionist tendencies know what a curse they can truly be.
Bottom line? If I can’t see how I am going to get a short stack of paperwork done in a timely manner and do it properly, I’ll leave it until better time-opportunity comes along. I may glance at the stack, and lacking a plan or filing system at that moment, I’ll plan on creating an organizing system before I get started. Although I have just forestalled the work, my mind reasons that the delay will save time, because after all… it will be organized.
See how this works? As paperwork piles up, it becomes more difficult to accomplish what was once a very do-able task. Next thing I know, a short pile of paperwork becomes a stack, the stack grows to fill a drawer, and once the drawer fills up, its contents are transferred to a basket (a stackable basket, so future paper-filled baskets will at least look organized).
Perhaps you’re thinking, “Fool! Why not just hire someone to do the work for you?”
You see there (chuckle)… you just don’t understand a perfectionist mentality. Most “perfectionists” don’t trust somebody else to do a job they could, should, or would conceivably do (or do better). To rely upon somebody else to do as menial a job as paperwork? Why not just blurt to the world, “I am a failure!” Besides- who in the world is going to know what all those hastily scribbled notes actually mean?
Now, if you ask me to rip your car apart in order to clean and detail-paint the chassis… to scrub and dress every tread block on the tires (including the spare)… to sand and polish the paint… I say, “No problem- I can knock it out in a week! Let me clear my schedule.”
Yessiree- I’ll take a polishing pad over a pad of paper any day of the week. Did I mention that I recently finished a 40-page article on paint polishing? It only took a few months to write.