pressure

i am one of the few people i know who does NOT work well under pressure. the few times i’ve procrastinated, something has come up at the last minute and i’ve had to choose — finish the model of Westminster Abbey/pass the class or skip school for a day/with mother’s help in both skipping school and with model building (hey, i was in the 4th grade). that was a tragic day because i had to SKIP SCHOOL and ask my mom for help. sure, some kids would be cheering, but i was just worried about all the work i’d have to make up.

another time, i choose to wait to fill up my car’s tank of gas until the day of departure which resulted in having to wait 45 minutes at the gas station (long story) plus, that 45 minutes allowed all the other cars to leave work and hit the road which added up to two more hours on the highways.

the reason why i have pressure on the brain (other than this cold i developed on friday) is that i witnessed two of the best procrastinators i know at work. one being brother G and the other being my uncle T. and they pulled off the best videos/presentations of the night (i’ll tell you about the party at a later date). i don’t know about uncle T, but i know brother G has my mother’s ability to stay up until the wee hours of the night, which helps when your deadline is only hours away. me? i’m a sleeper. a napper. a go to bed early-er. a wake up later. i’m pretty much always tired which severely hinders things when a deadline is only hours away and which is a driving factor of why i don’t adhere to the “why do something today when it can wait until tomorrow” but rather to the “why do something today when i could have been done yesterday.” (i wonder if being a night owl (or a really early bird) helps with this procrastination thing…?)

yes, i’m the girl who, when applying to undergraduate colleges, told my mother that if she didn’t read my essays by week’s end, i was going to mail them in without her comments. she’d had them for two weeks, but yes, i gave my mother a deadline, which was still weeks ahead of when the actual applications were due. me, who had lacrosse practice and games six days a week plus all sorts of school work plus friends to see plus books to read for fun on top of all that.  my mom still laughs about it to this day mainly because she was the one nagging my other siblings about writing their essays whereas i was the one nagging her. (oh man, how early are the signs? i am becoming my mother!)

this is the only “good” way i differ from my siblings: i stay on top of things (tee hee). i blame G and J because they are both so naturally smart, i had to study extra hard to be able to match the grades they brought home. and then there’s the whole blushing thing. it’s bad. still is. but i figured if i was prepared with the answers (well, except for math class), perhaps i wouldn’t blush when the teacher called on me. didn’t work, but i didn’t stop trying. some call this tenacious or ambitious. others call it stubborn. it depends on if your glass if half full or half empty.

what’s the point of all this? there isn’t one, really, but everyone either is a procrastinator or knows one and in my cold medicine ravaged brain, this is the post you’re getting. talk to me about your procrastination efforts. ever get into a jam you couldn’t get out of or are you the type who spins gold out of dust?

(seriously, talk to me here. i want loads of comments. this is a general topic, so i KNOW YOU CAN RELATE TO IT. speak up. your voice is important! *offers cookies*)

p.s. speaking of pressure, i don’t recommend flying when you have a cold. the part where the plane descends for its landing? yeah, the pain will radiate downwards from your ears to your jaw to your teeth and back up to your sinuses until you’re forced to check your ear to make sure it’s not dripping blood from a ruptured ear drum.

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10 Responses to “pressure”

  1. Linda G. Says:

    Aww. Sorry you have a cold. That sucks. :(

    I CAN work under pressure, but I’d rather not. As for procrastination…well, I try to only put off the non-urgent things. But I’m really good at that. ;)

    • abby mumford Says:

      it’s times like this when i wish i liked tea! my poor, sore throat….anyways, the things i procrastinate on doing are usually tasks i either don’t know the answer to yet or doing said task seems unappealing, but then again, the thought of having to do said task hangs over my head and to me that is worse than the task itself. although, i do know who to come to if i ever need an excuse!

  2. Kelly B Says:

    I am brilliant under pressure. Like your fam, I can stay up to the wee hours of the morning burning the oil and produce great things. It always burns me out after, but I rock under pressure.

  3. Frankie, did you take out the gah-bage? Says:

    I work relatively well under pressure. Too much and I will end up rocking myself in the corner. Too little and I will watch tv or clean the apartment or nap or have existential conversations with myself.

    I haven’t found the right balance yet. Eep.

  4. Alexis Says:

    Well now I’m that jerk who comes in and says pssssshhh I LOVE PRESSURE. At Christmas I decided that for my last quarter of classes (which just ended), I would finish my two big papers by week five, so I could spend the last five weeks studying for the exam. All that turned into was me having two documents open on my desktop for all ten weeks, and me being stressed every day that I had to write SOMETHING, and not really pulling the bulk of the work out until the weekend before finals. So please: give me real pressure. My own deadlines mean nothingnothingnothing.

    So I guess it sounds like you have the less stressful deal?

    • abby mumford Says:

      i want to shake your hand (a) because you work well under pressure and (b) because then it’d mean i’d be seeing you outside of the interwebs. :)

      for me stress begets more stress which makes me shut down. i SO wish i could change that about myself, but you know, it hasn’t happened in 30 years so if i was a betting gal, i’d say it’s not going to change…but then again if i was a betting gal, i’d be spending my time placing bets and gambling and not doing work until the last minute, so maybe that’s why i tuck my dollars into my wallet instead of putting in all on red.

      and that’s my vegas analogy for the day. erm, i think my cold medicine’s wearing off.

  5. Jeffe Kennedy Says:

    Sometimes I envy the do-it-ahead-of-time people, but I’m deadline-girl. I can’t even work on a thing unless the deadline is looming. Otherwise it’s not quite real to me. With writing, I’ve had to trick myself a bit – I give myself arbitrary deadlines, including daily deadlines. The only good thing about those is I don’t worry too much if I blow them. But have I ever blown a real deadline? Nope. But I might have gotten that scholarship in college instead of being runner-up if I hadn’t written the essay the night before the postmark deadline… ;-)

    • abby mumford Says:

      even i will admit that there is something about about a real deadline that gets the wheels moving. my wheels just happen to move a lot sooner than others. :)

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