Hello from Australia
I'm a chronic procrastinator from Australia. I'm so excited to have found such a large group of supportive people struggling with the same monster. It's very encouraging to know that there are all sorts of people all around the world trying to fight through the same thing and that I am not alone in this.
My chronic procrastination is ruining my life and really has been since I was a child. It has manifested itself in resisting things I know I should be doing, having no control over my constant lateness (no matter how hard I try or how hard on myself I get for disappointing people), wasting days and weeks at a time being afraid of decisions and projects that I have blown out of proportion, and even being irrationally afraid over the simple things in life that need to be done to ensure smooth sailing like opening mail, doing the dishes and brushing my teeth. Fear and demand resistance sits at the very heart of my psyche.
As you all probably already know yourselves, these simple things that everyone else seems to be able to handle with no sweat, have lead to an untold number of negative consequences in my life and the lives of those around me. I've lost alot of important friendships and relationships (and have probably aborted many more) due to this behavioural pattern. Although I made it through university through sheer last minute cramming will power, I've found that it is impossible to sustain adult life like that. I've completely lost confidence in my ability to meet any sort of external expectation and am constantly living below my potential.
I'm a perfectionist and a former over-achiever who fears failure. I have basically isolated myself from most people in my past just out of pure embarrassment and fear of their judgment for my past actions. I go to great lengths to put on a hard veneer of competence when I'm around people I don't really know well, but the more time you spend with me, the more cracks begin to show. I'm so afraid that people will see through to the pathetic, hopeless, desperate little wretch underneath. So I run away from them, and that's no way to live.
So basically I've been beating myself down and inadvertently asking the world to beat down on me all my life. It's torture - everything is so hard, when it really can't possibly be.
I have dreams I want to fulfil, I want to be free of myself. I can't do that burdened by my fears and procrastination. So here I am, laying myself before my weaknesses, in search of a way to get past this. I hope I can help you and you can help me and together we can gradually get better.
I don't really understand how the 12 steps work though - from the forum it seems like alot of it is working through each step through private journalling. But I don't really understand the role of the meetings and how that works if different people on different steps attend - does everyone get to talk? Doesn't that take hours? Or is there a common topic discussed that everyone relates to? I'd like to get up at 5:30 am on a Monday to attend one day to see what it's all about - but until then - what can I do here myself?
The really nice thing I've found in chatbox is that, being in a different time zone, I know that even while I'm asleep there are people everywhere busily going about their days and breaking through their hurdles one step at a time. I don't know about you, but I find that a comforting thought to go to bed to.
Yours with respect,