Ironically, Being a Slacker Leads to Burn-Out, Study Says

Last Updated Sep 18, 2009 8:32 AM EDT

Do slackers burn-out quicker?If you were one of the many chronic procrastinators at university who swore you'd turn over a new leaf when you hit the workforce, psychologists have some bad news for you: studies suggest that the tendency to be a slacker actually bodes pretty badly for your career after graduation, and not in the ways you'd suspect. How was this ominous tidbit gleaned by researchers? The British Psychological Society Research Digest blog reports that a pair of psychologists completed standard tests of procrastination and expectations for success for nearly 300 college students. Then they tracked how these same students (now grown up and part of the workforce) were doing in their jobs. The conclusion:
Students who found reason to avoid work-related tasks at university, and who were pessimistic about their chances of success, were more likely, 10, 14 and 17 years later, to report feeling disengaged from their job, and were more likely to report experiencing work-related burnout.
What's the takeaway? Primarily, that psychologists discover the darndest things, but the findings are also a stern warning that taking it easy and putting off tasks is not a recommended way to keep work easy-going. Ironically, a tendency to slack off seems to actually lead to burn out and boredom.

(Slacking off image by littledan77, CC 2.0)
  • Jessica Stillman On Twitter»

    Jessica lives in London where she works as a freelance writer with interests in green business and tech, management, and marketing.

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