melannen: Commander Valentine of Alpha Squad Seven, a red-haired female Nick Fury in space, smoking contemplatively (Default)
melannen ([personal profile] melannen) wrote2018-05-03 07:31 pm
Entry tags:

Note to self #3

Am I really just lazy?

A helpful key to why you are not doing that thing you know you are supposed to be doing.

Inspired by the large variety of Tumblr posts on the theme "you are not lazy, it's X!" that I've seen recently

all of which I have thought "oh, that's me!" to at least once while reading tumblr instead of doing the thing.




  • q1. Do you, at least in theory, have the ability to do the thing?
    1. Yes (goto q6)
    2. No (goto q2)
    3. Maybe (goto q3)


  • q2 Why can't you do the thing?
    1. I don't have the resources/skills/input from others that are necessary to do the thing (goto a1)
    2. I am physically/mentally/emotionally incapable of doing the thing, at least right now. (goto a2)


  • q3. What do you mean, maybe you have the ability?
    1. I could do the thing, but it would wipe me out for a long time for doing other things that are also important (goto a2)
    2. I'm not even sure what I'm supposed to be doing (goto q4)
    3. I might be able to do it, but I might fail or do it badly (goto q5)


  • q4. What aren't you sure about?
    1. The goals or expectations are really unclear, I'm not even entirely sure what the task is (goto a1)
    2. I've never done it before and I don't know how (goto a1)
    3. I don't know where to start, it's huge and seems impossible to tackle (goto a1)



  • q5. What will happen if it goes badly that is worse than if you don't do it?
    1. People could die? Like, literally die? It's a high-stakes task, okay (goto a1)
    2. I will be a failure and hate myself (goto a3)
    3. Other people will hate me (goto a3)
    4. I don't know but just thinking about it is awful and I can't risk it (goto a3)



  • q6. Okay, you can do the thing, but for some reason you aren't doing it. Do you want to be doing the thing?
    1. Yes (goto q7)
    2. No (goto q8)



  • q7. So why aren't you doing it?
    1. I don't have time, or I am already exhausted from doing other things, or I have other things that need to be done more urgently (goto a4)
    2. I was going to do the thing, but I got distracted by this flowchart about why I'm not doing the thing (goto a5)
    3. I don't knoooow. I want to do it, I can do it, I wish I was doing it, there's no reason not to do it, yet I'm still not doing it (goto a6)
    4. Why do anything? It's all pointless (goto a8)



  • q8. Why don't you want to do it?
    1. Doing it will cause me a significant amount of pain or discomfort, more than the task is worth (goto a2)
    2. I don't actually think it needs to be done (at least not now), I'm just feeling outside pressure to do it (goto a7)
    3. I don't think I'm the right person for the job (goto a1)
    4. I shouldn't have had to do it in the first place (goto a7)
    5. I don't want to do anything, I just want to lay myself here and sink into the earth and and stop existing (goto a8)
    6. I would rather do something else that is more fun or less work (goto q9)



  • q9 Will you not doing the thing right now cause distress to anyone you care about or are responsible for?
    1. Probably, but ehhh, me having fun is more important (goto a9)
    2. Probably not? (goto q10)



  • q10 Have you checked to make sure it's not causing distress to anyone?
    1. No, but nobody has complained to me about it, so it probably doesn't matter (goto a10a)
    2. I can think of no way in which me not doing the thing would cause measurable harm to anyone other than me (goto a10)



  • aX But what if it's all of these, in random order and also simultaneously?
    1. Oh jeez. I got nothin' for you, but I feel you. Work on managing expectations (yours and other people's), don't beat yourself up more than you can help it, and aim for (a10) as often as you can?















a1 This is not laziness. You might want to ask for specific help for the task, find training resources, or maybe look into delegation, project management or task design. Or, accept that you will not be doing that particular thing right now for good reasons, and move on.






a2 This is not laziness. You might want to ask for specific help with the task, postpone it for when you are more able to do it, or maybe look into adaptive strategies or disability or accessibility resources. Or, accept that you will not be doing that particular thing right now for good reasons, and move on






a3 This is not laziness. You might want to look into advice around anxiety, perfectionism, or rejection sensitivity.






a4 This is not laziness. You might want to look into time management skills, or advice about avoiding overcommitment. Or, accept that you will not be doing that particular thing right now for good reasons, and move on.






a5 This is not laziness. You might want to look into resources around helping with attention or focus issues.






a6 This is not laziness. You might want to look into strategies around executive dysfunction.






a7 This is not laziness. You might want to look into interpersonal communication or relationship advice. Or, accept that you will not be doing that particular thing right now for good reasons, and move on.






a8 This is not laziness. You might want to look into advice for anhedonia and/or depression.






a9 If this is your only reason, this is a thing called "being an asshole". You might want to look for resources on how to not be an asshole. Unless you just want to be an asshole, in which case, own it.






a10a In a perfect world, people would tell you if you were causing them problems, but this is not a perfect world, so you might want to (goto a7). Otherwise, (goto a10)






a10 Congratulations! You are just being lazy. In this postcapitalist hellhole in which we live in, we need more laziness in the world. Treasure it, and treasure the times when you are allowed it.
alexseanchai: Ladybug, of Miraculous fame, with a rainbow Pride background (Default)

[personal profile] alexseanchai 2018-05-04 12:03 am (UTC)(link)
*bookmarks, impressed and delighted and glad*
beatrice_otter: Me in red--face not shown (Default)

[personal profile] beatrice_otter 2018-05-04 12:27 am (UTC)(link)
This is AWESOME!
genarti: Knees-down view of woman on tiptoe next to bookshelves (Default)

[personal profile] genarti 2018-05-04 01:12 am (UTC)(link)
This is delightful, and full of truth.
lilysea: Tree hugger (Tree hugger)

[personal profile] lilysea 2018-05-04 03:10 am (UTC)(link)
This is BRILLIANT! ^_^

Thank you! ^_^

(I was literally just at the specialist yesterday, talking about inertia, lack of motivation, lack of concentration/attention/focus, ?ADHD?, and medication options.)

Also, I am so impressed by the magic whereby you click on a link and it magically takes you to another part of the page!
sciatrix: A thumbnail from an Escher print, black and white, of a dragon with its tail in its mouth, wing outstretched behind. (Default)

ahahaha oh god...

[personal profile] sciatrix 2018-05-04 03:46 am (UTC)(link)
...this is less relevant than I want it to be, but it's a good thoughtful nudge at a time when I really really needed it. Whoof.

Thanks for putting it together; I'm totally going to refer back to this now and again.
sasha_feather: neat looking overcoat (coat)

[personal profile] sasha_feather 2018-05-04 05:32 am (UTC)(link)
This is absolutely amazing. Thank you.
treewishes: (Default)

[personal profile] treewishes 2018-05-04 01:08 pm (UTC)(link)
First, this is GREAT.

And it reminds me of the Russian word for lazy, which yes, means lazy, but also means "doesn't expend unnecessary effort". Why do a thing when doing it now might cause more trouble? Better to wait.
law_nerd: Our 1/2 Lab puppy stares intently off into space. (Default)

[personal profile] law_nerd 2018-05-04 04:40 pm (UTC)(link)
Thanks, I wasn’t sure if that was something I’d heard from my mother, figured out myself, or read somewhere. It may in fact be all three, but I certainly read a lot of Heinlein at various formative ages ... I’ll happily give him credit.

Checklist is excellent. Leaves me wondering why shrink-y type people don’t offer something similar ... or, if they do, why I’ve not seen it before. If nothing else, it’s possible to have attention issues, exec function issues and depression in various permutations and combinations. It’s helpful to have ideas for questions that can help distinguish which is most at work when.
jesse_the_k: amazed Alanna (hero of Staples/Vaughn SAGA comic) (alanna is amazed)

[personal profile] jesse_the_k 2018-05-04 06:46 pm (UTC)(link)
Top notch!
sylvaine: Dark-haired person with black eyes & white pupils. (Default)

[personal profile] sylvaine 2018-05-04 07:07 pm (UTC)(link)
This is fabulous :D
ironphoenix: (wake up call)

[personal profile] ironphoenix 2018-05-26 03:20 pm (UTC)(link)
Nice... getting guilt about "laziness" out of the way is a really good thing for me.

May I assume that linking is OK?
ironphoenix: (blast of happy)

[personal profile] ironphoenix 2018-06-17 07:08 pm (UTC)(link)
Thanks, done!
shadytail: (Default)

[personal profile] shadytail 2018-06-06 05:35 pm (UTC)(link)
Okay, this is kind of old (you can tell how often I check my reading page), but it’s handy. Can I turn it into a quiz using Google Forms?