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.

Therapy...

Has anyone here ever had effective therapy for procrastination? I've taken hypnotherapy twice to try and sort out my habit of staying up wasting time until I'm dog tired, then getting up later and later.

The first time, it worked (I suspect because I used it as a totem of change exactly at the same time as I decided within myself to stop procrastinating). The second time, with a different therapist, it didn't work, quite possibly because that time, maybe because of the success of the first experiment, I expected it to work with no effort from me, like a magic pill.

I've recently heard about life coaches, of whom I am extremely suspicious in one way because there are no professional standards for practitioners, but is attractive in another way because they don't really have much theory (and therefore don't need to do loads of analysis) - they just focus on enacting the solution - or so they claim.

After spending a long time looking at this theory and that for reasons why I procrastinate, I sometimes think that self-knowledge is only useful to a small degree (enough that you can catch yourself deciding to procrastinate, and never mind why). So for this reason, I've avoided any "talking cures" such as psychoanalysis (widely discredited anyway) or psychotherapy or plain "counselling" in any form.

Of course, what I think would really help, but I could never afford, and I doubt is available, and is also extremely unfashionable, is for someone to move in with me for three months or so, and constantly watch what I'm doing, and constantly *make* me do things instead of procrastinating. Sort of shock treatment, behavioural conditioning or military discipline, which I believe can be pretty effective (if crudely so) at forming long-lived habits of self-discipline. I could join the army, I guess, but I somehow think that would be just a little too extreme, and in any case I wouldn't make it thru the first week. :)

Any thoughts?

Therapy

I think maybe therapy could be useful if you had a therapist who really understood procrastination - as pro says they seem to be clueless. Someone who combined practical with analysis - action is needed, but in my experience analysis can lead to working out what action is required. A therapist can help you see if you're going too far in one direction. Second to having someone move in with you is to have cyber-support. Oh! That's why we're here! It works.

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Life coaches

I know a Life Coach and she's awesome. If you want motivation and inspiration, a Life Coach (a good one, mind you, not just any Joe) can do that for you.

you have to be rich for that

Life coaches are very expensive, and it's not covered by insurance. Only the affluent can afford that luxury. I'd love a life coach, but my procrastination is all around money-making issues, so I can't.

Yeah

You're right, it's not cheap. She charges twice what I do so when I arranged a contra deal with her she got 4 hours of organising for my 2 hours of coaching!!!!!! No fair! :O

But anyway, you have free life coaches right here 8)

A thought..

You know what? I am going to play devil's advocate here and say that we really can over-analyse the situation, which of course just provides more procrastination fuel. Don't want to do something? Why don't you think about why you don't want to instead of just doing it?

I have found that over-analysing myself just prevents me taking action.

So, even though I have considered therapy, I have found that just bloody doing it has had the best effect. Getting here, posting (although CUOP can make me time-binge) and being accountable and being supported are the biggest therapies I have gotten so far.

Just my 2 cents 8)

analysis paralysis

I agree. I spent years trying to solve my procrastination problem by analyzing it - both with therapists and without. That just resulted in analysis paralysis. Most therapists are clueless about procrastination. In general it's not taken seriously as a psychological problem, though we all know here that it can be a life destroying problem. It's not in DSM IV and it should be.

I didn't start getting useful (and actionable) insights into my procrastination until I actually took some action - took baby steps towards stopping. I think this is true of addictive behavior in general (and procrastination is compulsive avoidance). The action has to come first; insights come later.