Between precrastination and procrastination

Mentors, motivators, and coaches often use the term procrastination in connection with the creative process. Many people, especially inexperienced ones, can relate to it. They know the fear in front of the blank page and the constant postponement of the task.

The advice from experienced mentors is usually take action. Don’t procrastinate. The first step is the biggest. I can also confirm this; you can find my thoughts about it here. Once we have drawn the first line, written the first sentence, and played the first note, we are already in the middle of the creative process.

Yet little is written about the opposite of procrastination: the precrastination, the tendency to do things too quickly, too soon, too hastily, or too rashly.

Great ideas require incubation time. We need time to look closely, observe, absorb, experiment, and let thoughts grow and connect. Leonardo da Vinci puts it this way:

“Creativity sometimes requires going slowly, pausing, even procrastinating. That allows ideas to marinate”.

Leonardo da Vinci

Social media experts recommend taking action, posting consistently, daily, and as much as possible. I think that’s a great way to gain followers and attention and to feel productive. But is it the best and most effective way to get the most out of things? Isn’t this advice the fuel for pre-crastination and thus the direct path to banality?

As always, the truth lies somewhere in between. Let’s not wait too long, but let’s also think about Leonardo from time to time before clicking Publish too soon.