Understanding The Relationship of Procrastination To The Philippines' Lack Of Progress


Ever heard of the term manana habit?  It is the term for "mamaya na" and "mamaya" means later.  The English term can be said as "I'll do it later."  It's a frequent problem to hear a lot of Pinoys (from the Failipino sector among Filipinos) who say, "Mamaya ko na gawin!" while they have all their problems illustrated in the picture on the right.  Many of them spend too much time playing cards, making a range of excuses (ex. the weather, traffic), spending too much time gaming, taking unnecessarily long naps or siesta, doodling, taking too long to eat snacks and spending too much time in the Internet while saying, "I'll get it done." but never getting anything done or if it, it's work badly done.

Whether you like it or not, procrastination reduces work quality and increases stress.  I remembered the time I put off my project until the last minute which caused me to do a very bad project.  When I decided to gather all the necessary materials little by little during the allotted time with a schedule, I was able to do the project well and I got a better grade.  When you think about it, having a well-allotted schedule makes better work than putting things at the last minute.  If you have a well-allotted time schedule that is strictly followed, you reduce every last bit of stress.  It might be tiresome at first but it reduces stress in the long run.  Unlike procrastination, well-timed schedules will eventually pay off in the long run.  I can present two examples in the next two paragraphs about decent Pinoys and Failipinos as examples of how they deal with procrastination.

Decent Pinoys seek to be productive and to get the job done on time. I observed how decent Pinoy workers are quick to inform their superiors that the resources they need for work are already running out.  In my meager experience as a small time businessman, I noticed how some Pinoy workers value time and they show up on time so they can do the work on time.  They know that renovations take months and may even reach a year, depending on the damage.  I was amazed with how some laborers of mine were able to help me coordinate my management system to making them effective.  I even knew someone because he's so slow, he would make an effort to show up on time by leaving his house earlier than usual.  He may have had slow reflexes but he always made his efforts to do his best to do the job, hence he was able to still carry out his job.  They believe it pays to be on time.

Failipinos have a different approach from decent Pinoys.  For them, it seems procrastination is an act of nationalism.  Maybe they believe they are not "authentic Pinoys" if they don't practice Failipino time or the act of being always late.  Perhaps they also think part of being an authentic Pinoy also lies on a misguided notion of happiness.  What could be the most common picture is that they just keep having fun all the time when you cannot have fun all the time.  If all they care about is being in a perpetual state of bliss, then don't expect them to make sacrifices because they don't want to sacrifice their happiness, they just want to fiesta all the time hence leading to procrastination and bad work performance.  Life is not always fun and sometimes, you need to make sacrifices for today for greater happiness later.

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