Yeah, I stopped doing that. If I know I can get a thing done in a day and it’s due in two weeks, I’ll do it in a week and six days. Because the alternative goes something like this:
I’ll schedule it for earlier, spreading it out over the two weeks.
I’ll try to tackle the first task, get distracted and feel bad about it.
I’ll forget the next day.
Day three, I have three tasks to tackle, get maybe half of one done because I’m stressed out, and I feel bad about it.
And so on. Two weeks of feeling bad about not doing it. And I’ll end up doing it all on the last day anyway. So I might just as well schedule it that way and feel good about it those first 13 days.
Also, doing it early takes longer. That’s why you do it early, so you have more time to do it.
Of course, this way doesn’t always work and it has its pitfalls:
- If I don’t know how much time I need, I won’t know to schedule it.
- I definitely should look into it at the beginning to get a good project plan for when it’s due, or I’ll spent most of that last day working on that rather than the task.
- I might get sick or distracted or stuff might go wrong.
- If I know I can do it in a day, I can probably do it in half a day, too, right? Or at least that’s what my brain makes of it.
Some of these I can work with, others I can’t. The other day, I did the taxes on the day they were due. I filled out all the forms, submitted the tax declaration, but I had to submit a profit calculation, too. For some reason, the tax people had changed the rules for that, though: I now had to verify an account to do that and the verification code would be sent by snail mail. (It arrived yesterday, ten days later.) Of course that ruined the whole submitting on the last day bit. But I still got eightish months of not worrying about it out of it.