Procrastination May Be Genetic, So Thanks a Lot, Mom and Dad

Got a procrastination problem? Blame mom and dad. Recent research suggests that procrastinating could be genetic — these kinds of Procbehaviors could be linked to genes affecting impulsivity, which are inherited traits.

Using a twin study, researchers from the University of Colorado-Boulder tried to tease out the relationships between impulsivity, procrastination, and ability to work towards goals:

In other words, identical twins are more alike when it comes to impulsiveness and procrastination than fraternal twins, and this is probably because they're genetically identical instead of merely genetically similar. As per Biology 101, characteristics with a genetic basis are heritable (in varying degrees). So, impulsivity and a propensity to procrastinate are heritable.

Moreover, procrastination appears to be an "evolutionary byproduct of impulsivity," because the two so closely coincide in individuals. It becomes more noticeable in modern environments, where many tasks can be repeatedly put off without risk of death or dismemberment (and the procrastinators, while often miserable, fail to die and select themselves out of the gene pool as a result of their productivity sins!)

However, until we have gene corrective therapies for this, if you're a procrastinator you've got to find a way to deal with it. Personally, I have had success with both the Pomodoro technique and "Structured Procrastination." Maybe in the future parents-to-be will DNA test embryos for the "procrastination gene" before consigning their babies to lifetimes of non-industriousness.

Image: Claire Joines/Bustle