When I started the sixth form (senior high school in the States?) we had an initial pep-talk from the Headmaster. (He was a good, but rather formidable man called Mr Orchard.) He told us how to gain from the greater freedom of senior school.
One of his points has stayed with me for fifty years: “Some pupils make detailed plans for their work and revision. The rest just get on and do it.”
It has often struck me since that planning – something I am good at – can easily get in the way of productivity. As deadlines loom there is a temptation to devise an even better plan, to cope with the shrinking time available. I would spend a couple of days producing a beautiful plan, with colour charts and diagrams. But once that is over, time seems even shorter, so an even more urgent plan becomes necessary.
I exaggerate, of course, but it can become a habit and a good way of avoiding real work.
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