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.

I don't wanna!!!


 That's my problem.  Anymore I get myself worked up into like anxiety attacks when it comes time for something I HAVE to do.   Back in college (and just about all my life before) I did just fine by excelling in "crunch" time after procrastinating up until the due date, but now in my professional life it means more and more that I just rationalize not doing my work at all.  

I honestly feel like I can be more productive repairing myself and my life focusing on all the great behavior improving excercises given here and other fine resources away from my office desk and repetative one-task work, but I know how plainly unacceptable and destructive such behaviors are after even just a few days worth.

Just plain not doing work I know damn well I can do (and even often enough enjoy!) is what mainly lost me one great job and now it seems I'm trying to have it cost me another (less great but even more needed) job. :[  All the same I just can't stand to think of *wasting* my time doing that when I am finally feeling some precious motivation to do other productive activities!

 I often feel like I'd like to live on Mars where the days are ~40hrs long so I'd have enough time to get done what normal people do :P 

 Well that's the most urgent issue that I needed to get off my chest.  In general I thank God that this place even exists.  I've been treated for depression for a few years now, and ADD a few years fewer than that, but as I've read and heard more and more accounts of what ADDICTION is like, the more I've realized that I am an addict.  The really torturous part is that I couldn't believe there was anything to be done about it since there was nothing concrete (like drugs or food or anything) that I was addicted *too*.   Finally just having the gumption to google for Procrastinators Anonymous now has me feeling like a man lost in the desert for years finally finding an oasis.  :D

gimme a chit!


Well yesterday was my first full day of "sobriety" in I dunno how long.  It felt wonderful to just be a real man for a day.  Trying to get the ball rolling but I must admit to lapsing a little overnight.  Stayed up overly late for no real reason and slept a little late, with just enough time to start work on time (a fortunate thing considering I'm at the point of being auto-fired for attendance if I'm even 1 more minute tardy).

 But I did start work on time, and I did my job well, and I've got the rest of this day ahead of me.  With plenty of chances to continue enjoying productivity. Yay!  I do believe I'll start using the checkin/out boards soon.  I'm just not too handy with lists yet.

Thanks again to all who have given me advice and to the rest of you who just exist too. ;-} 

good job moon doggie!

"Bless the present. Trust yourself. Expect the best." --Steve Nobel

A kind of rock bottom....

Thanks again to all sharing the sooth.  #1 thing this community is doing for me- and omg how vital it is- is lettiung me know I'm not alone! 

It dawned on me lately, (during renewed reflection on a relationship I foiled a few years ago), that while I may not have awhole lot going for me atm, or at least not much to brag about, I also don't have the baggage that I did.

I feel as tho in my journeys of the past few years, even though my procrastination addiction has developed to put me in a position of some desperation, everything else I've experienced has put me in a position of simplification.  I've kinda been stripped down not so much to "rock bottom" but rather to bedrock.  A place to build a foundation. So I think that's what I'm going to do.

 The Dragon has gotten big and strong in recent times for me, but luckily I've been singularly preparing this whole time (unawares) for the task of slaying it. ;-}

Got up today early enough to get myself coffe and breakfast (and even go to work on time!) for the first time in I have no idea how long.

 Thanks again, thoughts/discussion mucho appreciated.

So a couple questions

And I realize they don't have a simple answer that fixes me, just fishing for advice/discussion

1) how do I avoid my "drug" when it's virtually always available and in endless supply? something that vexes me is that if all else failed, someone hooked on a drug can lock themselves in a room and detox, but how do I detox from procrastination?

2) how do I shake the mentality of "well, now that I know I'm an addict, it's perfectly reasonable to behave like one! It simply makes sense to blow off this obligation thanks to my illness!" :[

I just don't know how to get on top of this thing.  I guess step #1 means that I can't, or I can't by myself, but then I just don't know what to DO.  Every instant I face a choice to just do the right (normal) thing or to procrastinate instead, and being fully conscious of that choice I make the wrong decision so often and it's costing me more and more every day.  I just did the math and I'm actually 1/4 of an attendance point away from being automatically fired. :[ 

MD 548 Questions

Hi MD, I loved your questions,most of us suffer form many of the same at one time or other.

I want to write a response before it gets lost in the rest of my "unfinished business" items.

I will only respond to your questions as how they relate to "me" which means they are neither "right or wrong" but "my story" and the only thing I can give is my story.

For me, I found my "drug" of which I have many, is not the problem- for me, it is the thinking that leads to the "drug".

For me, healthy thinking does not come natural because what I saw and learned as a child was not healthy and resulted in many of my "ways of coping with the pain" and/or survival as a child.

The good news is I am learning to be free and there is freedom, I have found in 12 step programs.

Something I read in Mealody Beatie's Lnguage of Letting Go Book kind of captures the essense of what I see in any of my "drugs". I have included definitions and sysnoyms of some words becuase I am still learning what they mean.

April 18 -- Freedom -- Language of Letting Go by Melodie BeatieWalk through. Today, I will understand that I hold the key to my freedom. I will stop participating in my oppression and victimization. I will take responsibility for myself. Many of us were oppressed and victimized as children. As adults, we may continue to keep ourselves oppressed.             (op·press. burden with cruel or unjust impositions or restraints; subject to a burdensome or harsh exercise of authority or power: 2. to lie heavily upon (the mind, a person, etc.): to weigh down, as sleep or weariness does. Synonyms :    exploiteddemoralizedbrokenburdenedexploiteddestituteunderfoothave-nothelpless)...( vic·tim·ize : to make a victim of. Synonymsexploit        ill-treatedpersecutedwrongeddeceive)------ Some of us don't understand that thinking of ourselves as victims will leave us feeling oppressed.Some of us don't know that we hold the key to our own freedom. That key is honoring ourselves, and taking care of ourselves.            ( hon·or–noun 1. honesty, fairness, or integrity in one's beliefs and actions: a man of honor. 2.a source of credit or distinction: to be an honor to one's family. 3. high respect, source of pride, somebody or something that brings respect or glory and is a source of pride to somebody or something else4. to keep a promise, or fulfill the terms of an agreement or contract)                               We can say what we mean, and mean what we say. We can stop waiting for others to give us what we need and take responsibility for ourselves. When we do, the gates to freedom will swing wide.......................... 

Responsibility I am responsible.

I can choose what to think (and something I discovered was I don;t even have to believe it at the time!!!), I can choose to be grateful (don't even have to feel it, but I do know things could always be worse),  I can choose to believe in a power greater than myself that will restore me to sanity, and choose to believe that there is one out thare that "wants to"help "me" and "will come to help me" (that is the kind I need).


re: questions

as for 1) yep, that's the problem. MANY people have said that here. In that sense it's like people who have eating addictions. You can't go cold turkey on eating. In that sense, our addiction is harder.

but in very important and real sense, our addiction is preferable. Procrastination might lose you your job or your marriage, but alcoholism will make you physically sick, and then kill you.

i think you have to step on the path and accept failure. Well if my life is any indication, i'm procrastinating right now. I have to do some stuff outside, and now it's dark. I am failing. I've been dittling for 3 hours now. I fail every day. So my life is one of daily accepting that failure. It's who i am. Sadly.

My one reward is that when i post my failures, i make other people here feel better about theirs.

But, ironically, acceping failure is harder for me than "normal people", and my standard is higher. Most people expect to do most of the routine tasks in their day at a mediocre level. I dont. Most people if they waste some time, say, whoops and get up and start doing things. If they can only get 2 of 3 things they planned that night done, they do the 2 things and go to bed.

Not me, i wallow in my failure. I hate myself for not measuring up, for not completing everything. Instead of feeling like doing 2/3 things is 67% success, i feel like it's 100% failure. And because i feel like a failure, i cant get myself to accept that and face that failure, so i escape and then DO NOT even get the 2/3 things done. I get 0/3. :( :( :(

so, knowing that about myself, my tack is to just accept it. If i waste time, i just embrace that failure. It is uncomfortable, i fight myself against accepting it, but i just do.

of course, i'm not doing that tonight. I cant quite get myself to accept it and face it yet. But being here for over 2 years, i know i can and will face it. I know this is failure, but it is not fatal. it FEELS fatal, but i know from experience that it is not. I know that i should not trust my instincts in this case.

So this is where faith comes in. I strive to have the faith to ignore the present evidence presenting in my mind (that this is unrecoverable failure), evidence that seems so incontrovertible, and instead believe in the hope that i will recover from this and this situation is redeemable. And i just decide to move on.

Another thing for me is taking the first step. microbursting lives here. I so often feel like i cannot start because i know i cannot finish. But this is a lie. another that i have to disbelieve based on faith. I reject that and take one small step on the path. it FEELS to me like this is failure, like it's a waste of time cuz i'm never gonna finish. But i just have to reject that feeling and take that step anyway.

Also my christian contemporary music helps me. Often when i'm stuck, i turn on a song and it reminds me of who i am and who god is and gradually everything seems to make sense in the world again. Then i have the confidence to take action, because i know god wants me to and is with me every step of teh way.

anyway, i should not write my whole life story. i dont know if any of these will work for you. I hope something does. But the most important thing is to probably keep trying things for the rest of your life, until you find something that works for you. Each person is different. It's a blessing that we can share our commonalities here with each other.

2) i think the answer to your 2) is contained within the question itself. The reason you posted the question is that you know, on some deeper level, that blowing off your obligation is wrong. if you didnt have your conscience informing you, it would never have occurred to you to ask the question in the first place. Sure you could give yourself the *excuse* that you're an addict, but you'll never truly be satisfied with that. You could let yourself "get away with" blowing off your obligations, but you would always know that you're "getting away with it."

No, the people on this board have firmly in their mind a higher way of living. One in which we are in control of our time and choices, and we're making good choices, to discharge our obligations responsibly and help take care of the people around us. It's this ideal that condemns us at times, and that's hard. But it is also this ideal which inspires us to keep trying.

I think you are asking good, hard, honest questions, and i think that bodes very well for your recovery. Keep it up, and i think you're going to make progress in this very difficult problem. I'm happy to recover along side you!!

take care

Welcome MD

Well, I just lost everything I wrote, but the miracle is I am not giving up. I am not going to rewrite it but I do relate. Keep showing up and below is a good coach lift, and he is one of us.

Watch the complete first session from the Easycalm Video Series right now for FREE site below.      

scroll to the middle to watch.

Sorry, I lost eveything I wrote, but glad you found us. Hope you keep showing up!

hi moondog

well, your story sounds VERY familiar. me too about the crunch time evolving into not doing it at all. scary to think there's someone else out there like that :P

I think your comments about addition are right on. If you're like me, and many of us, you're addiction isnt to a substance, but to a pattern of thinking and behaving. And breaking the cycle is very difficult and requires daily vigilance. I think that's why it only works when people run out of hope in other things, and are finally ready to accept step 2:

i came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity

people give up their self-reliance reluctantly.

in fact, that's what i'm struggling with. I have mentally assented to this step, but often renege in hourly thot and action.

also, if you're like me, you're set up for many setbacks. The best thing i do imho is coming back here to restart, and restart, and restart again.

i wish the best of luck and all blessings on your journey.

the touch of the master's hand:

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


I'm eager to really delve into those 12 steps.  I think I haven't totally gotten the hang of the first one yet, honestly. :P  But with other PEOPLE who can at least share some understanding (and I mean actual comprehension, not just compassion, I'm already lucky enough to have plenty of compassion from family and friends) I like my chances a lot more than I did in the the days and months and years leading up to now.

 And sorry for the inelegant ranty style of my first post but I figure just dumping what was on my mind and chest at the time was a good a way as any to get started here. ;-}

 I look forward to working with y'all! 

Hi Moondog

I'm not always perfect at this, but here is what has helped with my change so far:

Read the AA "Big Book" and substitute the word "procrastination" for "drinking" .  The Big Book is readily available at libraries or from an AA support center very inexpensively.  (I think it's actually just called Alcoholics Anonymous, but if you ask for the Big Book they will know what you are talking about.)

I've made a master list of EVERYTHING I need to do (It is 6 pages typed!)  It has actually been a huge relief - it keeps all that from rattling around in my brain, and it gives me something to look at when I need to plan or refocus.  I revise it weekly.  It only takes a few minutes to revise, and again, such a relief!

Be willing to do things in smaller increments (i set a time for 15 minutes), and leave the results up to your Higher Power.  Sometimes you can do things for 15 minutes that would appall you if you felt you had to do them all day.  (That's a paraphrase from the Big Book)

Keep comin' back...I know I will!