In modern times, millions of people have a habit, or rather a “disease” to put things off all the time, which seems simple, but greatly complicates life. According to some scientific studies, procrastination is becoming more and more common nowadays, depending on various factors, especially technology. Yes, procrastination is a problem that deeply affects the lives of modern people. However, this did not happen today. Why we tend to procrastinate is a question that was asked in ancient times. Moreover, this disease of procrastination was also discussed among the prominent philosophers of ancient Greece. Philosophers such as Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle speculated on an interesting phenomenon closely related to procrastination, which they called “akrasia”…
Akrasia in Greek means “not being able to control oneself” and “struggle with what is best”.
For this reason, he uses the phenomenon of akrasia in a way that indicates a person’s inability to control himself and weak willpower. The meaning of “struggle with what is better” in some way constitutes the philosophical dimension of the phenomenon, which also attracted ancient Greek philosophers.
Similar to procrastination, akrasia refers to situations where things that need to be done are not done or are constantly put off.
In other words, acrasia, whose origins and discussions can be traced back to ancient times, is the main phenomenon of procrastination that many people suffer from today. But acrasia and procrastination are not quite the same thing.
Akrasia is used when you know you have to do something but don’t do anything.
What makes the difference between acrasia and procrastination more obvious is the situation of “learning and fighting what is best.” For example, the result of your procrastination habit is that you neglect your homework, deciding to focus on something else even though you should. However, acrasia is the state of quitting smoking, even though you know you will benefit in many ways if you stop smoking. So in a way acrasia is a state of opposition to what is “better”.
It may seem extremely interesting to go against what is good for oneself. However, this phenomenon is one of the most prominent elements of human nature and therefore of everyday life.
The reason why famous philosophers such as Socrates, Plato and Aristotle are interested in it is that the phenomenon is quite common, although it seems extremely interesting and illogical. However, Socrates and Plato believed that acrasia does not exist, cannot exist. Under this thinker is Socrates “questioned by Plato”.If a person knows that a certain behavior or choice is best, why would he or she choose a different behavior or choice? lies the answer to the question.
According to Socrates, a person cannot make a “different” decision in a given situation. Because according to Plato and Socrates, no person can “consciously choose evil and evil.” For this reason, a phenomenon expressed as akrasia cannot exist in the world of thought of two philosophers. The situation that has arisen is caused by weakness of will and moral defects.
According to many experts, acrasia is the most important cause of procrastination.
However, there is an important difference between the two concepts to be aware of. When it comes to procrastination, it’s about “putting off” something for instant gratification or for any other reason. Whereas, acrasia is a condition where you never start or even resist something that is known to be beneficial.
Acrasia is called one of the most important obstacles to the success and happiness of many people.
Because it is a human phenomenon; It means not doing something and resisting the act of taking action, even though he knows he will benefit if he does what he has to do. In short, akrasia is a phenomenon that exists in the form of “knowing what to do but not doing.”
Everyday life is full of “acratic behaviour”.
Every time you put off exercising, every second you stop getting up early, every new cigarette you smoke, these are examples of acratic behavior in everyday life. Yes, it may seem that akrasia includes rather minor elements of everyday life.
However, the fact that it appears in almost all areas of life significantly complicates a person’s life. So what caused this unusual phenomenon? Why do we avoid action when we know we will actually win?
Akrasia is caused by a concept called “time inconsistency”.
Accordingly, the reward received at the moment is more valuable to people than any future benefit. Thus, instant gratification is much less valuable than future rewards, and, although at a low level, more attractive to human nature. This is what gives rise to the phenomenon of acrasia.
Experts say that as long as the habit of procrastination persists, critical behavior will continue.
Because the structure of the brain of people with procrastination after a while becomes a kind of “oppositional” structure and works in such a way that it prevents a person from acting. Thus, in life, long-term gains become worthless, and instant gratification becomes more and more valuable. So, what should be done to combat the acrasia effect?
According to some experts, you need to learn how to control your emotions in order to avoid the effect of acrasia.
Experts say that you need to be able to control your emotions in order to make a realistic, logical and correct choice between doing something or not doing something. For this reason, it is extremely important to learn how to control your emotions in real terms and protect yourself from the effects of akrasia.
Because this is the only way to ensure the emergence of the phenomenon of “encratia”, which Aristotle positions as the opposite of the phenomenon of acrasia and which means “to have power and will over oneself.” And again, this is the only way you will prefer long-term benefits to momentary pleasures without hesitation.
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