I have a photo collection of fat cats on my computer. I’m certain that they have the ideal life. Rolling around, sleeping most of the day, getting petted, drinking milk, being fed by multiple households . Just thinking about how wonderful that must be makes me happy.
I’ve always considered myself to be a lazy person. The kind who sleeps in, never tidies up, watches a lot of TV, eats junkfood, would rather stay in than go out and someone who always puts things off, ” why do it now? when tomorrow’s just as good”. Sure there have been times when I’ve temporarily shaken off the laziness and applied myself. (training for the city to surf, programming assignments at uni, marathon cleaning sessions) but this isn’t the day to day me.
When I got the diagnosis of ADHD initially I was glad to have a reason for why I was constantly screwing up. I’m not proud of being a lazy person/underachiever. But over time a feeling has kind of sunk in, that the diagnosis hasn’t really changed much at all. While I do think I do have ADHD, I don’t think its solely responsible for my past failures. I think if you have ADHD then you have less self control/self regulation than the average person. But less self control isn’t no self control. Every day that I don’t apply for jobs and choose to eat pizza instead of cooking is a day where I’ve made conscious decisions to do those things. Bad decisions, but If I don’t take responsibility for them and blame it on ADHD instead that would just make me a helpless victim of ADHD.
Laziness is a characteristic that’s probably been around since the start of human existence, you’d think natural selection would have eliminated it, but no. The greeks had some ideas on understanding its cause.
What causes the character trait of carelessness? We can get insight from Aristotle. According to Aristotle a character trait is caused by repeatedly doing some particular thing. With repetition it becomes a habit, a character trait. Take the character trait of laziness as an example. A person acquires the character trait of laziness by repeatedly taking the route of avoiding work, of repeatedly ignoring the voice of conscience, intellect, prudence in regard to what he ought to do. He has developed the habit of taking the easy road in regard to work. He just avoids it. By repeatedly doing this it becomes a way of thinking, a way of dealing with life. Now a person who is careless, or negligent, is one who habitually doesn't do the things he ought to do. He is untidy. The house is a disaster, in total disarray. He doesn't put anything away. What explanation can you give for this kind of behavior? Could the explanation lie in that character trait that we call laziness? Could it be that he is just lazy? Why doesn't he put things away? It is too much trouble. He doesn't want to go to the trouble of putting them away. It is just too much bother. And there is a problem, an obstacle. He doesn't know where to put them. He has accumulated so much stuff his storage spaces are all full. Nor does he want to go to the trouble of figuring out the best way of solving the problem. Of organizing and storing them, or where to store them. That requires the activity called thinking. He is averse to that. Thinking, analyzing, figuring things out is just not one of his specialties. It is too much trouble, too much work. It is just an activity he shys away from. So when he changes his clothes he just throws the old ones in a pile on a chair. He has no self-discipline. He is impulsive. He does whatever he wishes. He buys this and he buys that, whatever his heart desires. He has a whole lot of stuff and no place to keep it. So his stuff is strewn all over the house in piles. He is just not a methodical person, never has been one. His mind just doesn't work that way. Organizing things requires thought, not one of his specialties. He is not lazy in everything. He is not lazy in doing things he enjoys doing. He has plenty of energy for doing things that give him pleasure. He can show a lot of perseverance in doing things he likes to do, wants to do. But with regard to drab, mundane tasks that give him no pleasure, he is very procrastinating, dilatory and foot- dragging. He is impulse oriented, mood oriented, feeling oriented. He doesn't do what he doesn't want to do. He just habitually avoids doing things that he doesn't feel like doing. It is a way of life for him. Confusion and disarray don't bother him at all. It is a way of life. He doesn't deal with basic problems at their root. He just lives with them.
And conversely …
A type of person has something in him that the careless, indifferent, negligent person doesn't have. What is it? It is something inside himself that requires him to do the right thing, the honest thing, the intelligent thing. He has that voice within that tells him how he ought to act - and he obeys that voice. He is a person who habitually obeys the voice of Conscience, Reason, and Prudence within. He does what he knows he should do even though it may require a lot of work and be hard. He habitually takes the high road even though it may be the hard road. He is not daunted by difficulty. He does the right thing. He is a person of integrity. He has a self- discipline and moral strength that the careless person doesn't have. The careless, negligent person who takes the easy, lazy path in doing things reveals a lack of integrity that will likely reveal itself in other ways as well.
Taken from http://www.solitaryroad.com/a1025.html
Things to think about.