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.

Procrastination as Gambling

Wow. I am the biggest gambler I know. Not in the traditional sense: I don't pay money to play games of chance. But I live my life as a series of bets:
--I bet I can do this a few minutes more and it won't turn into a time-binge.
--I bet if this turns into a time-binge, I can still get up in the morning.
--I bet if I don't get up right now, something else will wake me up in time.
--I bet if I oversleep I can still pull it all off.
--I bet if I get out my magnifying mirror, I still won't dawdle in the bathroom.
--I bet if I start reading this magazine while I use the toilet I won't still be sitting here 45 minutes later.
--I bet if I turn on the tv for a few minutes I won't be late to work.
--I bet if I start reading this novel while I eat breakfast I can still get the laundry done before my 11:00 meeting.
--I bet if I go talk to that really lonely widow at 2:30 I can still pick up my daughter from school at 3:30.
--I bet if I blow off all the visits piling up on me from last week AND the ones I am supposed to do today, I can still get them all done next week.
--I bet if I take my daughter to the movies because she is bored (and because I feel guilty about forgetting to pick her up) I can still get that bible study prepared (if I stay up all night).
--I bet if I stay up most the night, I can still get up on time....

Underneath ALL of these dares, is the ultimate wager for me: I dare you to see whether, if you blow off everything you are supposed to do today, you'll still stay out of trouble, and you'll still survive. This is a wounded, vengeful bet in defiance of feelings of being unwanted, unloveable, needing to please, etc. that go all the way back to my childhood. (An aside: if any of you have ever read Carolyn Myss's books on Sacred Contracts, I would have to say that I incarnated entirely through a Gambler archetype saying, "I bet I can set up the most frustrating life imaginable and still survive.")

Pro, you have articles on the addictive nature of procrastination. Do you find yourself gambling all day long that you can procrastinate and it won't matter? How about the rest of you?

relying on ADD hyperfocus

Just read pro's comment about ADD not being all bad. It's very true. I just realized that since I have this ability/tendency to hyperfocus, I rely on it a lot. I have put off lots of things because I told myself I'll tend to it in a last-minute marathon (when the pressure is sufficiently high to motivate me and make it less boring). It's another componant of my gambling: I bet if I refuse to pace myself, work in steps, get started now, conform to standards and expectations, I can still get it done in my own unique way while I do something more interesting now."