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MBlume comments on Ugh fields - Less Wrong

153 [deleted] 12 April 2010 05:06PM

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Comment author: MBlume 25 March 2013 09:28:02PM 4 points [-]

This seems to be a serious problem. What do you do when you have enough vague procrastinatory ugh-fields that just reading good advice about procrastination makes you deeply afraid that you're going to have to think about one of them, so you wind up afraid to read/process it?

Comment author: TheOtherDave 25 March 2013 10:15:42PM 0 points [-]

The most reliable basic strategy for flattening out "ugh-fields" I know of is to decide on a single thing I want to un-ughify, and set up a schedule of reinforcement for myself for that thing.

If I wanted to un-ughify myself around reading advice articles about procrastination, for example, I would treat myself every time I read such an article for a while, then switch to an intermittent reinforcement schedule (e.g., treat myself for every third article), or still better a differential reinforcement schedule (e.g., treat myself for the 30% best articles I read each week).

That said, it's unlikely that reading advice articles about procrastination is a particularly high-value activity in the first place. Indeed, many people procrastinate that way.