John Perry

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

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Discover the power of putting things off: “Insightful, sensible, and amusing” (Harry G. Frankfurt, #1 New York Times–bestselling author of On Bullsh*t).
This is not a book for Bill Gates or Steven Spielberg. Clearly they have no trouble getting stuff done. For the great majority of us, though, what a comfort it is to discover 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.”
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 work at the last possible minute; on the other, it’s a dangerous time suck. Most importantly, he explores what may be procrastination’s greatest gift: the chance to accomplish surprising, wonderful things by not sticking to a rigid schedule.
“John Perry is the wittiest philosopher since Marx (Groucho), and he brings to this book a delightful combination of wisdom and humor.” —Thomas Cathcart, author of The Trolley Problem
“Reading this straight-talking, badly needed book has changed my life.” —Bruce McCall, writer and illustrator for The New Yorker
This book is currently unavailable
75 printed pages
Original publication
2012
Publication year
2012
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Quotes

    b1989134100has quotedlast month
    I was what I call a structured procrastinator: a person who gets a lot done by not doing other things
    daryaksyonzhas quoted4 years ago
    Here is where technology can help. It doesn’t have to be something Steve Jobs came up with. The old-fashioned clock radio will do, as long as you can find a station
    daryaksyonzhas quoted4 years ago
    The toast is burning, the rain is pouring, and Dalton feels like she’s losing her lover—but she does have coffee to go with all of this misery. In spite of the morose message, the rhythm is completely infectious
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