Procrastination of Leonardo Da Vinci

I am chilling and scrolling my feed watching memes and videos, then I suddenly remember my assignment that is due tomorrow. I say to myself, just five minutes, and I will start my assignment. Then an hour later, I feel regret and guilt.

This is a usual habit of mine. To get rid of it, I read self-help books, watched motivational videos but now those books and videos have become my means of procrastination.

Then one day, out of curiosity, I searched “top ten procrastinators” on Google. And to my amazement, there was the Dalai Lama, Bill Clinton, Leonardo da Vinci, and many such notable figures.

Many of those top procrastinators had slacking habits in the past but later gained focus. But some still carried their procrastination during their entire lives. And one of those was Leonardo da Vinci.

Da Vinci was not only a painter but an engineer, scientist, theorist, sculptor, and architect. But he is considered a procrastinator nonetheless. With voracious curiosity about many things, distraction was easy to stop him from completing his art. Because of this, in his lifetime he has only about 20 paintings, many of them unfinished. Leonardo painted the Mona Lisa for fifteen years. And the last supper took three years to complete. Knowing his habit, His creditors had to make him sign a contract to finish the job within the stipulated period. When Pope Leone X became frustrated with Vinchi’s inability to attend to his duties, he exclaimed, “Alas! this man will do nothing, for he begins by thinking of the end of the work, before the beginning.”

Vasari(biographer) in the biography of Vinchi wrote “in learning and in the rudiments of letters he would have made great proficiency. Only if he had not been so variable and unstable, for he set himself to learn many things, and then, after having begun them, abandoned them.”

Many considered his sluggish habit to be the nature of creating artistic masterpieces. While many regarded him as having a hyperactivity disorder. But no matter what the cause, Da Vinci had regret for his unfinished arts. Later Vinchi suffered from a condition similar to stroke that made his right hand unable to paint properly. This incident almost broke him but he trained his left hand to write, paint and teach. Also Da Vinci, on his deathbed, lamented his procrastination. He said that “he had offended God and humanity in not having worked at his art as he should have.” He had understood the wonders of anatomy, natural philosophy, and art. But he still regrets his own lack of perseverance.

So after reading Vinchi’s story, the main takeaway for me is to finish my work on time. Who knows? I may be on my deathbed tomorrow, mourning my laziness.

So I will start working towards my goal right away. But before that, I have to complete this “money heist” series. After I finish that, I swear, I won’t procrastinate anymore.




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