Less Wrong is a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality. Please visit our About page for more information.

# JGWeissman comments on How to Beat Procrastination - Less Wrong

156 05 February 2011 06:49PM

You are viewing a comment permalink. View the original post to see all comments and the full post content.

Sort By: Best

You are viewing a single comment's thread.

Comment author: 05 February 2011 08:35:21PM 4 points [-]

Motivation = (Expectancy*Value)/(Impulsiveness*Delay)

If this equation is right, then Impulsiveness appears to be a meaningless quantity. A more impulsive person would be less motivated to perform a task, but also would be less motivated to perform competing tasks. Changing Impulsiveness scales all Motivations equally, preserving the same structure of relative Motivation.

Comment author: 05 February 2011 09:26:26PM 4 points [-]

Right. Along with the clarification added by Procrastinus above, this is one thing I left out for the purposes of simplification. Technically, the TMT model's denominator contains a constant, a measure of delay, and a measure of "susceptibility to delay." 'Impulsiveness' is a decent single-word corallary of 'susceptibility to delay', but may vary depending on the task, whereas 'impulsiveness' is a word that sounds like a stable character trait.

Comment author: 05 February 2011 09:30:24PM 3 points [-]

There. I've added to footnote #6 to clarify this.

Comment author: 05 February 2011 08:48:18PM 1 point [-]

With low motivation for all tasks, a person may end up not doing any task (some of the time) - procrastination.

Comment author: 05 February 2011 09:11:44PM 1 point [-]

It should be clarified whether this model considers entertainment activities as 'tasks.' If a person has high Impulsiveness, I intuitively see them doing a lot of things with high Expectancy, medium/low value, and little or no Delay. Example: videogames.

However, I do not predict that people with high Impulsiveness will sit around in bed all day actually doing nothing, so I think that the equation is flawed in that we usually understand Impulsiveness as a constant factor for a person, while Expectancy, Value, and Delay are all variable, depending on the activity being considered.

Comment author: 07 February 2011 11:27:13PM 1 point [-]

I have a real procrastination problem, and when I don't have anything specific to do during the day I tend to lay in bed for at least an hour after I wake up. Not doing anything at all, just laying there.

So while laying in bed all day is probably unrealistic (hunger becomes a real motivator after a while) just sitting and doing nothing for a significant amount of time is not unrealistic at all.

Comment author: 05 February 2011 09:34:42PM 1 point [-]

Dorikka,

Does my new addition to footnote #6 answer your concern?

Comment author: 05 February 2011 10:13:55PM 0 points [-]

Yes -- thanks.