Procrastinators Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength and hope with each other that they may solve their common problem and help others to recover from chronic procrastination.

So glad I finally decided to post...

Hi everyone, I'm new here. This is only my second time in my life posting on any forum so I'm kind of unsure of what to say, you know; not going too far and giving TMI...
I have been viewing this website since Fall '05 but have been too lazy to post to it. I think It's because although I was searching for some type of help or group of people who could understand my problem, I think I was still unable to REALLY admit that I was a chronic (psychological disordered/problemed) Procratinator. I mean, I knew I was - have known for a very long time, have even admitted it to people... but I think I worried that if I admitted it on a ligitimate website designed for Procrastinators It would ligitimize my being a Procratinator. Deep down I diddn't want to truly accept that I was a Procrast. for fear that it would become worse. I was content to still allow myself to believe deep-down that I was just a person who would not control my laziness.
Growing up, I had a mother who never procrastinated, but completed all of her her "tasks" in time to be in bed by 9 p.m. every night, even though she had plenty of help with her 5 children from me. In my opinion, the tasks she completed were always half-assed. (I have always beena perfectionist.)I strove to have everything done by 8 p.m. (I realized as an accomplished adult that that was unrealistic) each night like her so up until about age 16 I never procrastinated. The first time I did it I kind of realized "I didd'nt have to do it (the task ) NOW, - I could put it off until later, I had a "choice". I have NEVER allowed myself to forget this thought it fuels my every action, everyday.
It's been EXTREMELY down-hill from that "discovery". [In High School even I wrote an article entitled "Procrastination is a Disease" everyone thought it was a hilarious satire, but it was my attempt to reach out and see if anyone else was suffering from this. It seemed no one was.]
The sad part is that I think out of all the members of this(and probably other(s))forum I am the worst off. I have allowed ruin my life. I don't even have a job. I live off of my husband, who makes a significantly lower income between the two of us. I've been unemployed for a year and 2 months. 11 of those months I "busied" myself reading over and "summarizing" 12 unemployment/job search related books... Of course I told everyone - including my creditors/debtors that I was "looking", I was even putting off "summarizing" the books I was reading that were supposed to help me properly prepare TO prepare for my job search.I can't even quantifiy or clearly state what I had been doing over that time period. Many people ask me with my qualifications why I have been looking for so long. I try to tell them "the truth" about summarizing the books, and they look at me like I'm crazy AND a liar - Like "how could that possibly take so long???" Honestly in mid-July I really began actually looking for a job (interviws, etc.).
Procrast. has destroyed my credit (because of my not working - my husband's tiny income can only support so much)we can hardly find an apartment to live in (My rental history is destroyed because although I was a good tenent in my last apartment. I left owing them $1,000+ dollars within a payment plan, became broke and was unable to pay what we had already agreed, put off renegotiating the payments because of embarrassment, they turned it over to a debt-collection agency) and I currently live with my in-laws whom I hate and hate me. That in itself has nearly torn my new marriage to shreads, besides destroying our once high-quality of life, making us broke and nearly destitute.
Although I graduated with a Bachelors of Science (and a little Masters DEgree Coursework) within 4 years against almost impossible odds, AND am a 6-year US Army Veteran. My Procrast. takes upon so many forms, I think deep down I've given up fighting it. I was once a very motivated person (although still a procrast.) now I am even robbed of that.
I am a perfectionist, because I am so afraid of not maximizing my opportunities, information, whatever - I make one small task into 6 preporatory ones before I can even begin the main one (especially in my so-called job search) I had a very authoritative (and abusive) step-father who ruled over my every breath (until 16), I have the tendency to overwork myself - when I do get the motivation- so I tell myself I deserve "a break",also making me what to do a task even less then next time I need to because I worked for 16 hours straight, and forget using other tasks to procras. - I have used OTHER PEOPLE- ALONG WITH TASKS - even my own husband (pretending I wanted more "quality time" with him) FOR YEARS!I have impossible time-completion standards (thinking I can get 8 hrs of work done in 4)And all of this is only the begining. I also always have so much to do, I'm always behind the ball - I feel like no matter how much, or what I do, I will never complete everything, so why bother at all...I have lost friends (and even some family)because I put off (while thinking about them everyday) sending a simple letter or e-mail for YEARS!

I am looking for "friends" who share these problems and who know how this feels. I really don't think anyone can help me here (Because I'm too far gone and like I said I think my procrast. is far worse than anyone else's here) but I sure would like someone to talk to that can identify with me. I was thinking of doing check-ins or book-ending here. But who am I kidding, I will probably just procrastinate going to this website. And I'm so ashamed of even needing to resort to something like this. What kind of person am I that I have such a lack of self-control? I have fought and fought and fought over the years... I feel like it's a dying battle.

Hi Ajnat! :o)

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I think some of us may not seem too badly affected by procrastination because we've been working on 'anticrastination' for some time - and it works. So let it be an inspiration to you.

As for not doing something perfectly being a waste of time, think of an exam - you have to have to finish it within three hours and get 60% (or whatever) - you can't have an extra week to try to get 100%. Or what about binding a wound in an emergency? You need to be swift and efficient, you can't waste time making it perfect. (Here speaks a perfectionist - I can suggest these analogies because I've used similar ones to convince myself!) Once you've done a few things imperfectly and got good results you'll start to believe it yourself. But you've got to start and see for yourself.

It will take time but things can get better. Don't worry about not following through with the bookending - just start it. You'll have noticed that some days someone will open a bookend and not close it, or not post at all - it still works even though it's not perfect. We're all feeling the benefit or we wouldn't do it.

Oh, and I've done the thing with friends too - I was trying to tot up how many friends I had (rather than acquaintances or colleagues), and it didn't take long - I've lost so many through procrastination.

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Perfectionism leads to trouble

Normy wrote: "As for not doing something perfectly being a waste of time, think of an exam - you have to have to finish it within three hours and get 60% (or whatever) - you can't have an extra week to try to get 100%." I used to wrestle with this exact problem in college. I'd wait too late to begin a term paper, then I'd wrestle with it in one massive time-binge, but it often couldn't be done--I couldn't turn it in on time. Being late, it was going to lose a letter grade. Aaack! So it had to be an even BETTER paper. It might've been a B paper, but now I really had to make it an A paper just to get the B. Perfectionism strikes again, and again I fail t turn it in. Now I'm only going to get a C for a paper that has wrung the life out of me. That's when I usually went to the prof and lied. I told them about working like crazy, but I made up some excuse for why I started late (which was procrastination. Why I procrastinated is another story--but definitely not just because I didn't want to do it or was lazy). Sometimes I still hadn't finished when I went to the prof, and if he took pity, I often went home and started over from scratch! Then it was even _more_ effort for a B paper (they didn't usually let me off from punishment entirely), and the paper that finally got a B (and would have earned an A if not late) was the one that took me 3 hours, not the one I had been slaving over for 20 hours! On other occasions, due to perfectionism, the only way I decided I was done with a paper was when i was out of time. Otherwise I'd have kept tweaking it until I grew sick of it and maybe never followed through (I do this all the time on household projects). When I was young I had the stamina to stay up all night time-binging and slaving to my perfectionism. I just can't do it now, so that's why I am here, trying to learn something better.

Do it OK then put it on the backburner

One thing I sometimes do these days is to do something to an 'acceptable' standard to hand in or work with (but not up to my standard), and only then, if I have time left over (and I don't have a higher priority job) do I tweak it. That means that it's ready to be used/hand in by the deadline, but in my mind I've still got a chance to improve it if time allows (and sometimes it does, and sometimes it doesn't). I've done this numerous times with my assignments and they've been coming back A+/Excellent - and that's the 'unfinished but good enough' work! (I tend to think academia has pretty low standards, LOL!).

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you're not the worst

People with addictive issues always think their problem is far worse than anyone else with the same type of problem. It's not true. In AA they call this state of mind "terminal uniqueness". Eventually you'll realize that you are just like the rest of us, no better and no worse (or "another bozo on the bus", AA puts it).

All of us here have harmed our lives by our procrastination - why else would we be here? I'm not employed either - haven't been for 3 years and 8 months, so I have you beat there. (I have a business, but it's not bringing in enough money.) Many of us have credit problems from not paying our bills on time, even when we have the money. You're not different or worse than the rest of us, and like the rest of us you can get better!

There are a couple of articles on the Web site about perfectionism because it's highly associated with procrastination. I'm a perfectionist, too, and I'm sure there are many others here who are as well. Here are some links:

Demand Resistance
Perfectionism can be a Major Time Waster

We're here to help

Well done on finally posting. Sharing is a massive step in self-help.

Please check-in here, read, contribute. It makes a big difference to share with people who understand and won't judge you. Noone can say if you'll ever overcome procrastination altogether, but you CAN improve.

You haven't been robbed of anything. You have already achieved so much. Let go of your perfectionism. Half-assed is better than no-assed!!!!!!!!!!!

So welcome, and please visit regularly. It can only help :)


I could not stop laughing when I read your comment "Half-assed" is better than NO-assed!" I kind of half-absorbed it and realized you were right...but then went back and reversed it...Are you sure? Are you a perfectionist? I keep feeling like there's no point in doing it at all if it's not of one's best quality,b ecause then you've just waisted your time because the minimal effort you put in may not win any results. Do you know what I mean?

You might like Flylady

She preaches anti-perfectionism.....(that's where I got most of my help from)

what is "AJNAT"?


AJNAT Pictures

AJNAT is one of my names. I foolishly type behind, rather than in front of it, not leaving it as a signature, but a salutation. Sorry to confuse (LOL).

Why don't more members of this site post pictures? I'm just curious about what some of you look like. (Although I know that isn't the focus,) I'm suprised I posted one because I was so ashamed of "coming out" but I would hate for people not to "know" who they are "talking" to.


I need to be anonymous!

I am a Professional Organiser. And it's not the 'done thing' to have issues like procrastination when you do this for a living.

So I need to remain anonymous.

Me, too!


are you sure?

She starts with it rather than signing with it, like it's a greeting or acronym. I'm still confused.

That was my guess, but I could be wrong

Let's wait and see what she says, then we'll know for sure!

It's her name


Glad I made you smile :)

Yes, I am sure. I am SO SURE. I have perfectionist tendencies that cause me to procrastinate - a fear of not meeting standards that I perceive others have set for me. But I have learned better ;)

Let's take sweeping your floor as an example. Let's say you look at your floor - the entrance way, family room and your kitchen - and you realise there are too many crumbs & fluff on it for you to NOT sweep. But you look at the huge expanse of floor and get tired thinking about it so you come to the conclusion that you simply can't get it all done because it will take too long and so you leave it.

Let's go the half-assed way. You sweep the kitchen only. You leave the entrance & family room because you got tired after doing the kitchen.

So tell me, have you achieved something? YES! You may not have done it all, but you achieved something. You did not waste your time, you got results.

Who said that the only kinds of results worth getting are perfect ones???

AND....(I'll get off my soapbox after this)....HOW DO YOU KNOW A MINIMAL EFFORT WON'T WIN ANY RESULTS??????

Persistent starting

Milo's right -- every little bit of progress is still progress, and it still gets you closer to where you want to be.

We've all heard the saying "A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step." It's true, but what comes after that first step? A second one. And a third, and so on and so on.

You may drift off the path, you may stop walking, you may set off in another direction entirely -- but you can always start from where you are.

Start small, but start. And then start again. Keep on starting, and you will get somewhere. Let finishing take care of itself for a while, and just worry about starting.


we all have this in common

I hurt just listening to your hurt. Mine is similar. You are not alone. Everybody here can understand you without being judgemental or appalled. Nobody can give you a cure, but I do think this forum can help. If you don't come here regularly at first, that's ok. Whenever you can overcome all the things that contribute to massive procrastination, come. And heal. When you begin to heal, you'll begin to change. I wish you peace and hope. You already have more power than you know, believe it or not. It's been hidden from you, but I believe that lurking, visiting, and especially sharing here will begin to reveal your power to get better. And then YOU will help you! Welcome, Ajnatyaj. (I am new myself and can't speak for it, really, yet I am trusting the group to welcome you. Relax.) As the song "3 a.m." says, "Just breathe."

so glad you posted

It's always nice to have new people join us

I relate to your story, as do many others I'm sure. I'm learning that I am worthy of getting things done! Procrast is a deeply rooted issue and for some of us, it's truly been a thief of life successes. For yrs I've related my procrast to an addiction like alcohol or food but have not been able to get any concrete help on it until now.

Just remember, we are never too old, never too sick, to get better and recover from this. We’re going to age daily anyway – might as well do it w/support from this group ;)

I hope you join in on the daily bookending posts – it helps me. I keep my BE very short, but long or short, it helps. Do not be ashamed of anything, in fact be proud and give yourself credit for admitting these things and deciding to take action! Shame, guilt, and anger do not get things done anyway. Feeling worthy and seeking support are key ingredients. Well, there are more and others here will share their insight.

Everyone in life has battles to overcome: food, money, relationships, addictions, etc. Some of us are just fortunate enough to admit it and then find a safe place to work on these things.


I just want to thank everyone who responed to me for making me feel welcome and not alone...People who don't have this problem think you are a ridiculous joke when you tell them you have a problem/addiction to chronic procrastination - some say "Yeah, I put things off too sometimes,". Ovbiously, not the same as us.
Someone mentiond I sounded angry/frustrated. Yeah - I am. I am an angry peprson by nature; It's just apart of my personality. But THAT is not my problem - procrast. is. Yesterday was my first time getting the opportunity to pen my story so it has been years of pent-up feelings/experiences that have come out for the first time. Of course I would sound frustrated/angry. Anyone would (lol). I am just suprised more contributors to this forum are not as angry as me. Maybe, I suspect, because they are not ass bad-off as me...
Maybe I will try the check-ins,I'm just afraid to fail at it by not keeping up with it

No such thing as failing if you try

Please CI - just doing it once is better than not at all. Don't let your perfectionism stop you making even a small step towards helping yourself!

Also, no such thing as succeeding if you DON'T try!

They talk about this in the literature about achieving success. If you're not willing to fail, you will never succeed. If you're not experiencing any failure in your life, it means you're not taking any risks, and if you're not taking any risks you'll never get anywhere.

Hey - look at me. I started this Web site and I use bookending regularly. Often I succeed, but sometimes I don't. I fell flat on my face yesterday, but I learned from that and today I will do better.

good quote

Just found this:

"Regret for the things we DID can be tempered by time; it is regret for the things we did NOT do that is inconsolable." --Sydney J. Harris