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.

OCz Master List

1 - I admit I am powerless over my compulsive procrastination and my life has become unmanageable

How unmanageable has my life become?

I still wake up early and come everyday to work, but lately, there are entire days that I spend doing nothing else than surfing the web... the only good thing about it is that I found this site. I'm glad I did.

I need to sit down for a while and come up with my master list. I'll start by stating what are those things I have procrastinated really bad:

a) I will loose my job! I always delay getting appovals for my POs... I have always been late since the first time my manager told me it was going to be my new resposibility to place them. The thing is that in the company this is considered a big fault and a corporate policy violation... and each year there comes newer, more stric controls to prevent it. Early this year I was asked to get a Vicepresident signature to approve all my pending POs: there were 14 of them! I was called into human Resources to be read a memo about doing something about it and not allowing any other PO to fall into this situation... Well, guess what. I now have 5 POs requireing VP signature again. The minute I send this email I will get fired! 

b) Social Service - This will sound really stupid... In Mexico (don't know about other places) to get your university degree you need to complete several hundred hours of social service (plus fulfilling all other degree requirements like having above 8.0 average, maybe writing a thesis or presenting a profesional exam)... well, I didcomplete my hours of service... this was 10 years ago while I was still studying. The thing is that I never filled the papers, never got the signatures and never registered my social service, so, it's like it never happened! the teacher I was working (really hard working) left the school a few months later and I was unable to demonstrate I had completed it.

How does that affect me? I cannot obtain my engineering degree until I go on again and work over 600 hours for free... Until now I had alwas said: who has the time when you have a full time job? The truth is that  I never have accepted I will have to sacrifice my weekends or work until late for a half a year... I guess there's also a bit of rage about knowing that all of it could have been avoided by filling up some papers and getting a signature.

c) Military service - Same situation... I didn't picked up my documents... these were incinirated and now I have to go over it again... I will have to spend all my saturday morning doing military service... there's no way around it... I cannot postpone it anymore... I'm 31 now... so I've procrastinated about it for 12 years now! God, it hurts bad just writing it down!

How will this affect me? well, I will have a hard time getting a new job without it! and since I am about to loos my 7 year current job... I will need this bad!

d) Taxes, bills, credit card payment - I cannot think of a single paper involving money I do not procrastinate about.

the list could go on forever... but I don't have forever. I'll stop for now and will come back with actions about it.

This monday my wife told me she wants to quit her job... and this, having a foot outside of mine is generating a lot of pressure. With a 1 year old girl... I cannot just sit and wait until all things go wrong... I need to act and I need to do it now!

OCz on a fresh start

once more I thank you all for your hugs and wishes and prayers. I can tell you I really feel these!

This weekend I was on a catholic retreat (I know PA is not affiliated with any specific religion or belief, but thsi is the way i lived this weekend so please bear with me or skip reading at the moment it makes you feel uncomfortable). I've been to a few retreats in the last decade, perhaps not as many as I wished (but those have been good enough so I don't really regret it) but this one was different. This time I actually participated in the planning and development of it. And it was great, I attended the meetings, prepared most of my material and took a very active role in it. I can actually say I outperformed myself!

Don't know you, but I procrastinate in almost all aspects of my life, and then, there are some activities, just a few, where I perform almost flawlessly.

A few weeks ago, my wife asked me why couldn't I perform just as well at all other aspects in my life. Of course I reacted bad at it... it's not easy to acept chritic specially when it hits something you're really passionate about. I told her that it's not like I wasn't trying, that I just had this addiction and I could not help it. What was I doing? b.llsh.t! She was right and I was wrong and I didn't wanted to admit it!

I must be mindful abput it and learn what makes me feel so passionate about this specific things and try to bring it to other aspects in my life.

But, and this is a BIIIIIG BUT!, God acts in misterious ways, doesn't him?

When we started planning the retreat we said that we needed to find out how to reach the participants, and that it would be a good outcome if we managed to touch the heart of at least one of them... actually it was me who said it, and I don't know yet if we managed to touch somebody elses' heart, but I know it did touch mine.

Even though I wasn't able to attend all the activities since I was prepparing for some other activity, I was able to meditate real deep into my life. I was able to see how much damage I'm inflicting to myself and the people around me. Sometimes with my procrastination, sometimes with the lies that result from it, sometims not keeping up promises.

So I asked God for forgiveness, and I prayed for it, and then I prayed more for my family, and then I prayed some more so I could find meaning to my life, and then prayed until I just not felt like praying anymore. But, I asked God just one more thing, to guide me through my final speech, which, coincidentaly was the last one of the retreat. I told him I was not good at reading the Bible, and my religious knoledge was not that good as any other from the retreat team... but I wanted him to use me as a vehicle and I asked him to open my heart and speak through me.

I think I had never asked him so many things, and I think I had never really asked him anything with my heart in my hands, but this time I did, and I really believe he heard me, since those things I said later I am absolutely sure I would not have said by myself, I mean I did had procrastinated a bit and hadn't really prepared my speech.

So, I believe that if he was able to help me with the speech, he migth help me with all the other things I asked for: forgiveness, my family and meaning to my life.

Have a great life, thank you for being here and pray with your heart in your hands!

OCz - Two items from Master List

I have picked up my first two ML tasks...  I'll get my marriage back on track and I'll do my social service as Step 1 to get my engineering degree!

I had thougth I would pick an easy one... but instead I decided to go for the ones I really needed. Both will be really energy and time consuming, but I really need to clear these from my Master list.

OCz - SaveMarriage!

After a couple of talks with were presented with a priceless opportunity: a long weekend! but, we took separate roads. We went each to visit our parents. We both had time to think about our issues without engaging into a figth trying to figure it out tugether.

This morning she told me she was interested in trying but she also said it was going to be the last attempt. I know her well enough to tell she's not bluffing, she really meant it is the last one.

So, we agreed to have a civilized talk tonigth and try to express (on paper) the things that matter most to each of us as well as those that bother us... no judging, just express them. I'm looking forward to it!

operation save marriage

i love that term, ocz.

i think vic is right, we all tread similar roads. I just hope we can share and help our fellow travelers.

another resource that comes to mind: FamilyLife's Weekend to remember. your writing of your lists reminded me of that--that step is part of what they do there.

but it has a bit of a twist: each person writes one thing down that they know the other doesnt like, and they vow to change it in themselves. it was really moving for both of us to hear those things.

the touch of the master's hand:

"fall down seven times, get up eight" - japanese proverb

RE: Opearation Save Marriage

I know a lot of you have followed my story. I cannot thank you enough for your kind words, prayers and suggestions.

Since you've been so kind I'll stick to my word and let you know how is it going.

Well, after a couple days of postponing for several reasons we finaly had the talk last nigth.

God, it was intense, full of recriminations from both sides , mostly hers, a lot of excuses from mine.

It was a process in itself, where I went from being angry to being desperate to be sad, to be relieved.

Actualy, the word could be re-live!

I am by all means not happy. I heard a lot of bad stuff about me (kinda like the words I got from the therapist, only this time it meant much much more).  I had no idea I had dissapointed so much.

I think the hardest part was to hear/notice that the perfectionist in me that makes me procrastinate so hard was also hurting her badly! She reminded me that every time something happens to her I always tell her "hey you coul d do better if... or you should do this next time... " up to a point where she became scaqred of telling me anything.

It was really hard to notice I was hurting the one person I care the most.

I asked for forgiveness, I asked for a last chance. I mean not a next chance, but a last one. At first she refused, she said she has stopped believing in me since I've let her down on so many ocasions.

In the end she said she'd give it a last try, not for herself since she felt so empty, but for me because she still cares and for our baby... but she was determinate to make it a just one last chance... And I believe her... one thing I can tell of her is that she makes really firm decisions.

I know it's not much... but it gives me hope... nad I think thats good for now.

Thank you all for listening... I feel so good to be able to write this here and not in a personal diary! I still welcome your prayers... I believe these have helped! I'll keep you all in mines as I know you all migth be going through hard times as well.


praying for ocz also

i really relate.

> It was really hard to notice I was hurting the one person I care the most.

yeah, me too.

the touch of the master's hand:

"fall down seven times, get up eight" - japanese proverb

Praying for you, impressed

Praying for you, impressed that you both managed to do that and glad there's hope *hugs*

Hope for OCZ

I am happy I caught your share. I too am noticing  (I was hurting the one person I care the most.)

I am noticing how I hurt my kids, friends, etc., etc. and it came out today with my son. I guess coming out of denial is not pleasant for any of us, but we are not alone and yes, we now have hope.


Hope for OCZ

I am happy I caught your share. I too am noticing  (I was hurting the one person I care the most.)

I am noticing how I hurt my kids, friends, etc., etc. and it came out today with my son. I guess coming out of denial is not pleasant for any of us, but we are not alone and yes, we now have hope.


OCz Not Alone

When I started dealing with issues, as usual, I found they were more common than I thought, just that nobody talks about them. It's like when you buy a new car andsuddendenly you spot all the same cars on the road.  Many of us trudge the same road you are on with your marriage. Would your wife be willing to pray with you before you talk?

Do you think a 3rd list would help? to express (on paper) the things that matter most to God about the marriage as well as those that bother God about the marriage.. no judging, just express them. It is working for me.

(( hug )) @ OCz

I'm saying a prayer right now that your efforts will be fruitful for you and your wife.

OCz - SocialService

last friday I avoided procrastinating about the social service and opened the school website, looked for the available organizations, read the instructions and guidelines and wrote to 7 organizations I found interesting to work with. I got replies from 2 of them this morning. . Cannot believe I managed to do all this after procrastinating about it for over 9 years!

Next action item: Go to school and have a talk with the social service coordinator to get enrolled in one of the programs! I think I'll do it tomorrow before attendiong GaP meeting.

OCz Master list

I know I have been procrastinating on writing my master list... this will prevent from achieving my goals... oh, wait, I have not set my goals, how could I achieve these! I think I'll start from creating categories and adding some tasks into it with no particular order... I'll see how it goes.

Initial list @12NOV2009

  1. Family
    1. T - have a beautiful marriage
      1. Agree on family nigth
      2. Agree on personal space/time
      3. Agree on parents nigth
        1. Arrange for nanny
    2. CC - follow a parenting plan (1st step: have a plan)
      1. Make a plan
      2. Agree with mommy
  2. Home
    1. Finance
      1. Setup expense report system
      2. Schedule payments
      3. Change homeaddress with banks and insurance
      4. Cancel unused cards
    2. Home improvement
      1. Repair WC leak
      2. Hang BR mirror 
      3. Paint CC room
      4. Paint studio
      5. Change kitchen tabletop
  3. Personal Development
    1. Inprove handwriting 
    2. Read 10 books/year
    3. Start a Journal
    4. Start social service
      1. Register at school
    5. Get degree
    6. Learn a new language... french maybe?
  4. Job
    1. Review Objectives with boss
      1. Share with LR & MG
    2. Present development plan
      1. Review pending mandatory trainings
      2. List interesting online training materials
  5. Start my own Business
    1. List prospectors
    2. Plan to buy initial equipment
    3. Setup a space in studio for paperwork
  6. Web
    1. 60+
    2. Consejos
    3. MC
      1. agree domain name with RF
    4. RPSA
    5. GAP

It wasn't really hard... why do I procrastinate so much on such easy to do tasks? I'll think about it later.


soldarity OCz

I'm saying a prayer for you and your family today. My situation is different but my pains and fears are very similar. Thanks for sharing; stick with the program - it works.

I went to therapy yesterday

I went to therapy yesterday as a result from one friend relating to my story from last week and he recommended me his therapist.

It didn't go so well!

Mostly because I disqualified what I was hearing! and it's not that I didn't recognized what was being told was true... it's mostly because I didn't like it.

It's hard to hear that you're responsible for yourself. It's hard to hear that if I don't act now it will begin impacting other aspects of my life. and it has!

the good thing is that after the session I got a chance to go excercise for a couple hours... It was so good! gave me time to begin assimilating all that had happened. And this morning I continued to digest it. I think it will take me a few more days to really understand all the implications.

The most important is that I have made a personal commitment with myself:

  1. I will overcome procrastination!
  2. I will do it fast!
  3. I will take responsibility over my life!
  4. I will stop avoiding the consequences of my procrastination!
  5. I will love myself and my family, my job and the things around me... most of them so good I don't truly understand why I reject enjoying these gifts from God!

So, I'm starting a plan:

  1. Pray, ask God to help me, to keep me from hurting myself and those around me!
  2. Diagnose - How do I identify at this moment of my life with the signs of procrastination?
  3. Write short-mid-long term goals! dreams are acceptable but I need to identify these! Define a direction for my life! After all, I'll need a plan for when I'm in control of my procrastination!
  4. List the things I have procrastinated more... separate those that still need to/can be done. Ask for forgiveness on those I cannot. Make a plan for those I can!
  5. Make regular reviews!

Not a perfect list... but it sounds like a plan!

Dear God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can and the wisdom to know the difference.


I'm going down... hard!

It's been 3 weeks since I went to therapy. 

The therapist said I wasn't ready to receive therapy... I thougth b.lls...t!

She said this would affect my family, my marriage... I thougth b.lls..t!

I answered I wasn't doing so bad at home... now I think b.lls..t!

My wife has just told me she doesn't love me anymore... she says she's tired of me not keeping my promises.

I thougth she was just angry about something I forgot we had planned for this weekend... Maybe because I had just asked her hwat we were doing next week... now she tells me it's been going on for months... almost a year. 

I feel so down! I'm angry! Can't even cry... and oh, god, how much I want to!

I need to get up, and I need to get up fast! I think I'm doing fine... but I need better... my family needs me back on track... and now I have something new to worry about...

Dear father... please help me keep my family together! help us find out about the things that brougth us together...  and help us bring that back into our lifes. Amen.

I hope that tomorrow the sky is clearer and my problems don't look so deep! 

pray for ocz

ocz i'm so sorry to hear this news. it must be extremely difficult for you. We're all here for you, altho maybe even that is not much consolation. I want you to win back your wife! I pray that that's possible, and that god will guide you in your process.

In my marriage, a similar thing happens. i dont follow thru on things for my wife. That understandably makes her feel unloved.

in fact, i am indeed falling short of loving her. Because there are things i could do--that i want to do--that i do not do.

The fact that i cannot do these things because of a debilitating addiction to procrastination doesnt change the way it feels for her. neglected.

You know it is very humbling to admit that. Because it is very important to me to be a good husband. I have always valued that role and the Bible commands it.

In some ways then, praying to god for strength in overcoming my addiction, and the work i do in that vein here, are the best things i can do for my marriage.

I also look at the things i can do well: massages, listening, supportive, companionship, and i try to do them as much as i can. So, as i write this, i have to admit, i could do better even at those.

I am sure that you know ways that you can make your wife feel loved. Do you think doing them might help? She might be confused: "He must love me because of X, but he must not because he didnt do Y". But confused might be a step up. It is in my marriage.

I can also strongly recommend the movie Fireproof. If you choose to watch it, it would probably be better to watch when you're alone. there is a great powerful secret of love in that movie. Writing all this convicts me how i have to sep up in my own life. It's so easy to recommend a path, but so hard to step on it and walk it.

i guess that's why we're all here.

i will be praying for you!

the touch of the master's hand:

"fall down seven times, get up eight" - japanese proverb

Going Down Hard, Keep from Falling

I don't know how I read this, but it was not "coincidence" because I could not put it up on my laptop, the desktop was on all nite and had this on my screen.

You are not alone, we do not give advice, but share our experience, strength and hope: 1. For me, I needed to find therapists who "understand" and not pay them for making me feel worse than I already do( Besides I am the best there is at criticizing myself, why should I pay someone for a lesser job) 2. Keep showing up 3. Focus on one good thing , even if it does seem pathetic (we could all share them with youu if you can't think of any yourself) 4. Accpet me where I am (I don't have to like it)4. Accept others where they are (I think the only living thing that loves me is my one cat) Remember the 3 C's : You are not the cause, you can  not control, and you are not the cure, you can only change you.  Every self help book I have read so far (Science of self-Discipline, by KL Johnson, Now Habit, N.Fiore,Power of Now, E.Tolle, etc. they all say you must find one good thing about yourself and focus on that, even the Olympic athletics are trained that way)There must be something to it is they all have that one and only one common

have that one and only one common denomnator.

Your not alone and we care about you here. If you don't shut down, this too shall pass. (I know, it hurts, you are a good person)


*Gives OCz a big bear hug* It's not easy when things start going downhill because of procrastination. I've come on the verge of losing everything because of it, so I know what it feels like when you're trying not to panic and fix the whole situation.

I'm not going to give advice, because my situation was different, but I will recommend one thing, and that is to find a different psychiatrist. Finding a good psychiatrist that knows when to push, when to listen, and when to offer suggestions is invaluable, and from what I've read here, it doesn't sound like the psychiatrist you're currently seeing is very supportive.

My thoughts and prayers are with you, OCz. When you're feeling particularly down, give yourself a mental hug from me. Don't panic, breathe, and remember that there are many others rooting for you here at PA who know what it's like. *hugs*

~ ~ ~ ~ ~
Nothing diminishes anxiety faster than action - Walter Anderson

re: OCz

Sorry you are having a rough time, hang in there!


"The world is my classroom, each day is a new lesson, and every person I meet is my teacher" - Craig Harper

OCz diagnostic vs the signs of compulsive procrastination

 I'm trying to be honest and this should help me identify where I need to work the most as well as work as a reference for future diagnostics.

  1. Disappointment is a way of life. We constantly disappoint other people and ourselves by not keeping our promises. Yes it is! I do disappoint others, to an extent that some people have stopped looking for me at job and go somewhere else with their requests.
  1. We have enormous difficulty getting started on new projects, or transitioning from one project to another. Not an issue, I can start tons of projects... hmmm, maybe that's the issue!
  1. We have a very poor sense of time, chronically underestimating or overestimating how long a task will take us to complete. Yes, I do always underestimate how long sill things take... even when I'm not procrastinating or getting distracted my expected times are unreal... I should avoid replying inmmediately when someone asks me how long it will take and multiply by 3 the first number that came to may head!
  1. We have difficulty organizing projects by breaking them down into steps; we don't know where to start, even when we're willing to start.  I find resistance in breaking tasks, but, when I do it I'm really good at it.
  1. We are surrounded by clutter and disorganization in our homes and work spaces. Yes and yes, oh, and also in the car, my notes, my thoughts, even my feelings... there's clutter everywhere!
  1. We are regularly late for appointments. This used to be a major problem but I think I have been arriving on time for a few months now. I don't think it's still an issue.
  1. We are acutely aware of what we should be doing, or think we should be doing, and oddly out of touch with what we actually want and need.  I'm always aware of what I need to do, yet, as someone was posting a few days ago, knowing is not the same as doing!
  1. We feel uncomfortable saying "no" to requests from others, and instead express our resentment through the passive resistance of procrastination. One of my biggest issues, specially if I like the person asking.
  1. We suffer from Demand Resistance, causing us to do anything and everything except the one thing we most need to do. Yes, it took me so long to read and understand demand resistance. I can be busy all day, not surfing the net or whatching Tv and yet end the day feeling I accomplished nothing important.
  1. We are short-term thinkers, focusing on short-term pleasure while ignoring long-term well-being. This is a BIG issue, I have not been able to even draft mi mid term and long term goals!

So, overall, I think I have 8.5 of the 10 signs!

I took a CI test (just for the fun of it) and got .... not impressive but clearly above average. This got me into thinking: he, this stuff can be meassured, how come I don't go on and find a meassure of my procrastination. This way I can track my progress, right? while it is not a science, I'd love to do the excercise each month or quarter and I'd like to see some progress!