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The Art of Procrastination: A Guide to Effective Dawdling, Lollygagging and Postponing

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The Art of Procrastination: A Guide to Effective Dawdling, Lollygagging and Postponing Cover

ISBN13: 9780761171676
ISBN10: 0761171673
Condition:
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

This is not a book for Bill Gates. Or Hillary Clinton, or Steven Spielberg. Clearly they have no trouble getting stuff done. For the great majority of us, though, what a comfort to discover that we're not wastrels and slackers, but doers... in our own way. It may sound counterintuitive, but according to philosopher John Perry, you can accomplish a lot by putting things off. He calls it "structured procrastination":

In 1995, while not working on some project I should have been working on, I began to feel rotten about myself. But then I noticed something. On the whole, I had a reputation as a person who got a lot done and made a reasonable contribution... A paradox. Rather than getting to work on my important projects, I began to think about this conundrum. I realized that I was what I call a structured procrastinator: a person who gets a lot done by not doing other things.

Celebrating a nearly universal character flaw, The Art of Procrastination is a wise, charming, compulsively readable book — really, a tongue-in-cheek argument of ideas. Perry offers ingenious strategies, like the defensive to-do list ("1. Learn Chinese...") and task triage. He discusses the double-edged relationship between the computer and procrastination — on the one hand, it allows the procrastinator to fire off a letter or paper at the last possible minute; on the other, it's a dangerous time suck (Perry counters this by never surfing until he's already hungry for lunch). Or what may be procrastination's greatest gift: the chance to accomplish surprising, wonderful things by not sticking to a rigid schedule. For example, Perry wrote this book by avoiding the work he was supposed to be doing — grading papers and evaluating dissertation ideas. How lucky for us.

About the Author

John Perry is an emeritus professor of philosophy at Stanford University and currently teaches at UC Riverside. He is the co-host of the nationally syndicated public radio program Philosophy Talk, and winner, in 2011, of an Ig Nobel Prize in Literature for the essay “Structured Procrastination.” He lives with his wife in Palo Alto, California.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 2 comments:

Warren Etheredge, January 1, 2013 (view all comments by Warren Etheredge)
If I hadn’t read this book, I might never have forgiven myself for taking so long to finish it. The Art of Procrastination: A Guide to Effective Dawdling, Lollygagging and Postponing is a slim, sly volume that offers reassuring explanations for a life-long affliction and comfortably proves why sometimes it actually is better to put of till tomorrow what could be accomplished right then. I would advise you to make the purchase of this book your top priority, but now know that might make you all the less likely to follow through immediately. My next task: writing a thank you note to author/philosopher John Perry, professor emeritus at Stanford. I apologize in advance, Mr. Perry, if I don’t get around to it.
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Gus Schreiber, October 28, 2012 (view all comments by Gus Schreiber)
I've been putting off writing this review: procrastination. Now I know why! This book tells all about dilly-dallying and killing time, with humor, wit, and the reasons why. And, not least, the author reveals some of the up sides of procrastination. Don't put off reading it!
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780761171676
Author:
Perry, John
Publisher:
Workman Publishing
Subject:
General Self-Help
Subject:
Psychology : General
Subject:
Self-Help : Personal Growth - General
Subject:
Philosophy : General
Subject:
Psychology: Personality Disorders
Edition Description:
Hardback
Publication Date:
20120831
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Pages:
112
Dimensions:
7 x 5 in

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