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43Things.com,” a community-based online to-do list, allows you to list your top goals in life. A blog reader, Antony, culled  some interesting statistics from that website.

  • 5,716 people set the goal: “Decide what the hell I would like to do with the rest of my life.”
  • 21,100 people set the goal: “Stop procrastinating”

What’s funny about the second goal – stop procrastinating – is that I once quoted Paul Graham as saying, “The to-do list is itself a form of type-B (something less important) procrastination.”

  1. I looked at this site and decided that frequent reminders of my goals would be yet another form of procrastination as I would have to read and delete them every day.

    I don’t know this for a fact, but I suspect that procrastination is really some form of communication from our “superconscious” telling us that what we’re procrastinating about is really not in the best interest of our highest and greatest good.

    What do you think?


  2. Charles, you may very well be right. I believe that when we have the “right goals” they pull us forward rather than having to push. Yes, some things do require effort. But if you have to be reminded over and over, then clearly it is not a life priority.

    Here are the top 10 goals of all time from 43 Things:

    – lose weight 28548 people
    – stop procrastinating 21332 people
    – Fall in love 19246 people
    – write a book 18869 people
    – be happy 17010 people
    – Get a tattoo 15470 people
    – drink more water 14634 people
    – go on a road trip with no predetermined destination 14496 people
    – get married 13663 people
    – travel the world 13636 people

    Only weight loss beat out procrastination. More people want to stop procrastinating than those who want to be happy.

    Antony, thanks for the “deciding what to do as you are doing it” quote. Spot on!

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