Could procrastination be beneficial? 拖延是否也有益處

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你有 「拖延症」 嗎?現代人經常把拖延視為一個壞習慣,但在節奏緊張的都市生活中,適當地歇一歇也許對身心健康有益。本期 「隨身英語」 討論拖延是否也有益處。

詞彙:modern life 現代生活

Procrastination is often seen as the enemy of productivity. Images of lazy people with feet up on desks or wasting time to dodge work spring to mind at the very mention of the word. And there are many things which indicate that procrastination is a problem which needs addressing. But could there be some benefits to it too?

We live in a high-octane world – always on the go, racing from one task to another. And at times, duties, be it work or personal, can feel relentless – with our nose constantly to the grindstone. Sometimes we just need to switch off, chill out and reboot. A little procrastination can help detach us from the pressures of modern life. According to psychotherapist F Diane Barth, watching TV, taking a long bath or listening to music can help us to ease off.

And it’s possible that procrastination has become more prevalent during the pandemic. With many countries going through lockdowns, some of us have suddenly found ourselves with more time – not having the hours of commutes, or options of social activities we once took for granted. Being at home, many of us quickly discovered that it is impossible to be productive 24-7. That extra relaxation can help us to be more productive or creative in the long run, allowing us to clear our minds and focus better.

The issue is that many of us see that time not working as lost time. And we almost develop a sense of guilt related to not making the most of every moment. German sociologist and economist Max Weber says that we’ve almost got to the point of believing that the busier we are, the better, and that there is a sense of morality connected with time usage. It seems important to remember that taking a little time away from yourself is not just slacking off.

So, while being productive is important, it seems that some amount of downtime and procrastination can help us to relax and become more focussed. The next time you feel really stressed, why not try wasting a little time? You might just like it.

詞彙表

productivity 生產力
feet up 腳翹在桌子上,指休息放鬆
dodge 躲避,逃避
address 設法解決,應對
high-octane 充滿活力的
on the go 忙個不停
duty 責任,義務
relentless 一刻不停的,沒完沒了的
nose to the grindstone 埋頭苦幹
switch off 不再關注,不再想
chill out (疲勞後)放鬆一下
reboot 重新投入
ease off 減輕壓力
take for granted 想當然,把…視為理所應當的
in the long run 從長遠來看
make the most of 充分利用
slack off 偷懶,懈怠
downtime 休息時間

測驗與練習

1.  閱讀課文並回答問題。

1. What do some of us imagine when hearing the word 『procrastination’?

2. What activities, according to F Diane Barth, can help you relax?

3. What did some of us take for granted before the pandemic?

4. What does Max Weber say we’ve almost got to the point of believing?

5. What can downtime help us to do?

2.  選擇意思恰當的單詞或詞組來完成下列句子。

1. Why don’t you just relax and put your _______ on the chair.

dodge                          feet up                          relentless                 downtime

2. I’ve decided to _______ the most of the day and go scuba-diving.

feet up                         make                             slack                        do

3. Get back to work and don’t _______ off!

slack                            dodge                            feet up                     downtime

4. The first issue I wish to _______ in the meeting is about funds.

address                        downtime                      feet up                     chill out

5. We should take a shortcut if you want to _______ the traffic jam.

chill out                         feet up                          dodge                      relentless

答案

1.  閱讀課文並回答問題。  

1. What do some of us imagine when hearing the word 『procrastination’?
Images of lazy people with feet up on desks or wasting time to dodge work.

2. What activities, according to F Diane Barth, can help you relax?
Watching TV, taking a long bath or listening to music can help us to ease off.

3. What did some of us take for granted before the pandemic?
The option of social activities around our daily working lives.

4. What does Max Weber say we’ve almost got to the point of believing?
That being busier makes us better.

5. What can downtime help us to do?
Some amount of downtime and procrastination can help us to relax and become more focussed.

2.  選擇意思恰當的單詞或詞組來完成下列句子。

1. Why don’t you just relax and put your feet up on the chair.

2. I’ve decided to make the most of the day and go scuba-diving.

3. Get back to work and don’t slack off!

4. The first issue I wish to address in the meeting is about funds.

5. We should take a shortcut if you want to dodge the traffic jam.