Friday, January 1, 2010

Why Post-pone Pleasure?

Have you ever saved a certain much loved outfit for that very special occasion only to take it out of the wardrobe and find its too small or eaten by moths? How about putting that gift certificate to the side, waiting until you can buy the perfect thing only to find it months later and see that it has expired?

If you answered yes, then you are likely suffering from pleasure procrastination. An article in the New York Times discusses new findings by scientists who have uncovered this odd sort of disorder in humans. Apparently it involves a bit of greed on our parts- we want the best and do not want to settle for less even if in the end it means we get nothing. We save that special bottle of wine for that very special night out there in our future with that very special person, our soul mate, waiting for us to fall into his open arms. But instead that ideal never materialises and the cat accidentally knocks the special bottle of wine off the shelf and the person ends up with nada.

So, let's not put off fun we could have today waiting for that perfect tomorrow that never arrives. Do you want to go scuba diving but you're waiting to lose that last 10 kgs? Do you want to visit the museum but can't seem to make time in your weekends full of clothes washing? Do you want to write that book but don't want to take time away from your family for something so indulgent?

The term pleasure procrastinator makes me sad. Don't be one of them.

11 comments:

bonita said...

I'm all too familiar with this. My mom was the Empress of Pleasure Procastination. On one visit, I found a standing rib roast in the freezer. It had been there for over two years. When asked about it she said,"But I'll never be able to afford such a roast again." I found it was still in the freezer, after she died three years later. Even with a plethora of similar examples, I find myself engaging in pleasure procatination. Dunno why.

Lauri Kubuitsile said...

That's sad about your mother. Why put off that pleasure? Bonita, don't die with your own "roast" in the freezer.

Helen Ginger said...

Akk. You're pushing me. I'm dragging my feet. I think I probably am one of those pleasure procrastinators. Dang, now I'm going to have to think about it. Maybe not. I'm also a pain procrastinator.

Helen
Straight From Hel

Lyn said...

Well said! No time like the present to plunge in and do what we've been wanting to do. I have been procastinating on the volunteerism side of things but no more ... I have already stated my intentions! I will find a volunteer post that can be mutually sustaining. Thanks for the kick in the pants! Cheers to you Laurie.

Selma said...

Bonita's comment made me a bit teary. My grandmother always wanted a bottle of Chanel No.5. I bought her some for her 70th birthday but she never used it as she was saving it for a special occasion. 18 years later the bottle was still unopened. At her funeral my cousins and I opened the bottle and passed it around for everyone to wear in her honour. I still wish she had worn it and enjoyed it herself.

Elizabeth Bradley said...

What a wonderful post. My husband used to behave in this manner, and boy oh boy did he puzzle me. I have taught him to seize them moment. Why put a bottle of wine away only to discover it's turned to vinegar?

That comment of Bonita's reminds me of an aunt of mine, she kept all her good china under lock and key and would never break out the good crystal, and she wouldn't wear her jewelry. After she died, (at just 42), her husband remarried and his new wife used and broke the china and crystal, wore her jewelry, and basically enjoyed all that my aunt could not allow herself to enjoy. So sad.

Lauri Kubuitsile said...

What sad stories! I never realised this was so widespread. Perhaps I was lucky as I was mostly raised by my father so I was never taught the whole "good china" sitiuation. I think that may be the kernel that starts this problem.

I like the idea of everyone wearing tghe perfume at the funeral, Selma.

BrownGirl said...

I needed to read this as I'm soooo guilty of postponing pleasure. Thank you, great change to make for the new year.rui

Elizabeth Bradley said...

I just popped in to say, in response to your comment at my place, I must come up with a system to manage this blogging thing. I like your idea. I'll spend one day a week writing a few posts and then I will be free to write and tend to all those mundane chores and errands that life requires we participate in. Thanks for the tip!

Lauri Kubuitsile said...

Glad it helped, Elizabeth. One thing I learned today though. Writing many posts at once leads me to errors. I think it's good to give the posts a once through the night before they go live. I had buy instead of by and reader's instead of readers. Embarrassment for someone who calls herself a writer.

Lauri Kubuitsile said...

Glad it helped, Elizabeth. One thing I learned today though. Writing many posts at once leads me to errors. I think it's good to give the posts a once through the night before they go live. I had buy instead of by and reader's instead of readers. Embarrassment for someone who calls herself a writer.