My Procrastination Habit…

Adam Fearnall
4 min readMay 1, 2022

I’m reading Unwinding Anxiety: New Science Show How to Break the Cycles of Worry and Fear to Heal Your Mind by Dr. Judson Brewer. I love reading it. It’s written in a simple, chatty, and example-laden way and it works well with the way that I learn. I’m savouring the last couple of chapters. I could be done, but I’d rather give the book another day or two to marinate. Plus, I take a small amount of joy in every moment that I get to use a bookmark (when you get a bookmark or think of something that could be a bookmark but really nothing else, don’t you get a little zing from actually using it as a bookmark?).

Anyway, there’s an idea from the book whirring around inside me right now, so I thought I’d share.

This morning I’m interested in what Dr. Jud describes as his “procrastination habit loop.” It goes like this (for him):

Trigger: Deadline for writing a paper

Behaviour: Check the New York Times website

Result: Feel up on the news, behind on the work

(One of the things that Dr. Jud recommends for working with anxiety is to map out your habit loops. He gives a three category framework for doing this: trigger, behaviour, result/reward.)

He goes on to describe how he realized that checking the New York Times was generally preceded by a “white -hot…



Adam Fearnall

Human, Organizer, Baseball Fan, Singer/Songwriter for @bethechase