The Procrastination Equation

How to Stop Putting Things Off and Start Getting Stuff Done
by Piers Steel | Harper Perennial © 2012 · 352 pages

Did you know there’s an equation for Procrastination? Yep. Expectancy x Value / Impulsiveness x Delay = Motivation. Thank you, Piers Steel. In this great book, Piers (a leading researcher on the science of motivation/procrastination) walks us thru the power of that equation. Big Ideas we explore include: Mental Contrasting (and why it beats creative visualization), goal setting (3 scientific keys) and how to add a month of productivity to your year.

Procrastinators who understand the processes behind their inaction can master them and become less stressed about their deadlines and more able to meet them.
Piers Steel

“This book is about every promise you made to yourself but broke. It is about every goal you set but let slide, never finding the motivation. It is about diets postponed, late-night scrambles to finish projects, and disappointed looks from the people who depend on you—or from the one you see in the mirror. It is about being the slacker in your family and the straggler in your circle of friends. It is about that menacing cloud of uncompleted chores, from the late bill payments to the clutter that fills your home. It is about that doctor’s appointment you have been putting off and the finances still in disarray. It is about dawdling, delay, opportunity lost, and more. Much more. This book is also about the other side, the moments of action when procrastination gives way to crystal clarity and attention, work is devoured without hesitation, and giving up never even occurs to you. It is about personal transformation, about unencumbered desire free of internal competition, and the guiltless leisure you can enjoy when your daily tasks are done. This book is about potential, wasted and fulfilled; about dreams that fade into obscurity and dreams we can make come true. Best of all, this book is about shifting the rest of your life away from putting it off to getting it done.”

~ Piers Steel, Ph.D. from The Procrastination Equation

Piers Steel, Ph.D. is one of the world’s leading researchers on the science of motivation and, specifically, procrastination.

He’s also a smart and funny writer. This is a great book packed with research pointing to the evolutionary and biological roots of our tendency to procrastinate. (Did you know other animals—even pigeons!—procrastinate?)

And, of course, it’s also packed with Big Ideas on what to do about our procrastination. (Get a copy here.)

I’m excited to share some of my favorites so let’s jump straight in. We’ll start with the Procrastination Equation!

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About the author


Piers Steel

Researcher, professor, speaker, and author.