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.

Allovertheplace's January Project


December 2012 

I tend to get very excited about a variety of projects, research them to infinity (it has to be just right....perfectionism rears it's ugly head) then forget about them almost as quickly. Someone wise has pointed out that part of this is a form of emotional regulation. It goes something like this:

I experience frustration with something in my life (feelings of failure and overwhelm)...I get excited about it and feel some relief. As my negative emotions dissipate, I no longer "need" the project.

However, in the long term, I become more and more disappointed with myself as I perceive I do not carry through with the projects I start. These projects are often typical life stuff i.e. cleaning out clutter, starting a regular exericise program. The other issue that is clearly here is just being able to deal with negative emotions as they arise in a constructive way. 

I don't know how to battle this beast, except one little bit at a time. I thought a good place to start might be to pick one thing and mindfully work away at it for a short period of time, using this log to document my experience. To provide a structure, I thought I would start with this free e-course on creating a habit: and if anyone else wants to give it a go, it's free! 

So I'm going to start here. Smile 

just checking in (probably procrastinating???)

Hi guys,

I'm visiting my folks in Ireland at the moment, and have an essay to finish (finish finish finish!!!! But at least now I've started it!!!), so all my 'tiny habits' have gone out the window. Apart from my regular pre-Christine routine of HP contact, AND come to think of it, I'm still doing my morning pages. That is good, pat on the back for me there :). Also, I am actually trying the quick meditation session daily as well, but at the moment my mind is so wrapped up in this essay that I find it particularly hard to focus.

Anyway, hope all's well, catch up with you soon,


It's an inside job...

@hazyjane re: tiny habits

it seems that allovertheplace has continued this
on a new thread for the month of February here:

@movingalong thank you

Thank you movingalong, you are so helpful!!!! :)

It's an inside job...

@ hazyjane

people say motivation won't last. neither does bathing, that's why we recommend it daily

zig ziglar

hey hazyjane, howudoin?

i've read about the morning pages in some crappy magazine while i was in hospital, sounds good though, i remembered you mentioned it, i might start following suite..a bit like a reflective journal, i guess you do one of those for your art

jay Smile

hi Jay

Yes I'm still here,  been focusing on an essay that I have to get in by Thursday and of course am putting off the moment of truth when I actually start Writing the damn thing. I need to use the tools!!! Break it down, visualise, etc etc.

I have been meaning to post though and say my 'tiny habits' are feeling well-established now, the bed making (forgot to this morning funnily enough!! Maybe because I planned on going back to bed to write my essay...). Also the 'yogic breathing', I've been doing that every evening, and the morning pages and meditation in the mornings. Also in the evenings writing five things on a post-it and sticking it on the wall, I then switch off the light and listen to Louise Hay as I go to sleep.

I'm probably not quite doing the 'Yay me!!' bit  as suggested, I need to remember that little burst of positive energy after every behaviour I want to encourage; I find it's really very easy for me to judge myself as lacking in lots of ways and that isn't helpful! Criticism kills, literally and figuratively, and I need to 'watch that negative self-talk' too.

Hope your flare-up fades down ASAP, great that your smoothies help keep you going :). I have a juicer I must start using again, regularly, in the meantime though I'd better crack on with my essay!!


It's an inside job...

February already!

Hi Jay and hazyjane, 

Wow- we're in february now. isn't that crazy? I think I'll create a February project forum topic to carry on with little bits of habit change...good idea?

It's been quite a week or two actually and I'm utterly exhausted. so much happening, and that negative self talk you wrote about in your last post is very embedded in my brain. It's like I can feel the serotonin running out of my body- just jumping ship! With stress increasing, fatigue increases, motivation decreases...and I forget to be kind to myself AND other people.

I suppose right now I feel especially guilty for getting upset at people critical voice which is so terrible for me erupts when I am tired and cranky. And especially when I feel I don't get support I need to cope in this crazy world. I have no doubt that I alienate people when I actually need them the most. Arrrrgh.

I'm doing pretty well at getting up in the morning now and getting going. The nightly routine I am revising and am still working on getting to bed early. I think I may make new tiny habits around one or two of the following: meditation,  time to sleep, exercise, calm breathing when feeling irritated/angry...lots to choose from! 

Goodnight for now.


@ aotp

people say motivation won't last. neither does bathing, that's why we recommend it daily

zig ziglar


i'm real ill with the fibromyalgia at the moment, am taking a lot of meds but i will come back and read all your notes when i am recovered from this flare. i just want to encourage you to keep posting for yourself ...and also for me, selfish i know but your notes are so useful, insightful.

thank goodness i knew about the jj fogg 30 second thing as at least i feel all is not lost as i'm maintaining that and will pick up on my routine when recovered

hope you're good

have an amazing day

jay Smile

@hazyjane...i havn't read the thread but i assume you're here...hi!


Hey there. Sorry to hear you're not feeling well right now. And don't worry, I haven't really been posting notes for the past few days because things have been nuts around here. So many things going on. It has really brought home to me the desire to have a good routine of eating and exercise so that I can better manage my stress. Right now, when stress hits, I'm a basket case. But in the past when I have actually exercised consistently, I was much more resilient in the face of stressful situations. 

I still feel empowered with the new information about habits and change and want to get back to reviewing stuff.

 Hoping that you feel better soon, and I'll feel better and we'll get back to things bit by bit. ;)


hey AOTP

people say motivation won't last. neither does bathing, that's why we recommend it daily

zig ziglar

hi aotp

thank you, am betterish today, had a bad flare so it will go like that on amd off for a while now)

glad you feel armed for the 'nuts' times, definatly exercise helps, my 1st 30 second decision was to jump on my reformer for 30 seconds 1st thing after using the tiolet in the morning..i'm still on 30 seconds-missed a few days- not sure how to develop it from there, going to leave it at 30 for a few days

another thing which is really helpful for busy stressful times is a green smoothie, happily i have well established this habit every morning now, lucky as i couldn't eat a thing for days so good for smoothies!

yes, we will get back on track) i don't feel i'va 'slipped' too bad considering & it sounds like you're doing ok, i wouldn't think of you as a basket case ( mind the negative self talk!!)

jay Smile

Back on the bus: Day 3- Little steps

This is a lot of text, but it's actually not too hard to read through- it's repetitive and you can skip through parts you don't find relevant. It's written as I took notes from Christine Carter's lectures, so from her perspective mostly and then I cut and pasted some information from BJ Fogg's website/tiny habits course. 


Habit Code- Day 3


This is going to be hard for perfectionists, but stay with it! For today's lesson we are going to scale it back. Ditch your ambition. If you feel humiliated, if you feel you are not doing well enough, that you're not changing by leaps and bounds, then remember the turtle beat the hare. We are going to start with some early wins or KEYSTONE habits. 


These are habits that have the power to change other habits (sorry I don't have a better description here…). Research shows that Keystone habits matter more than some of the other habits we can get into. 


The important part today is the INITIATING part of a routine. It is the first tiny step of something e.g. the first 30 seconds of meditation; the first 10 steps on the treadmill. These first few steps are so important and they might not FEEL that fulfilling, but think of them as catalysts. 


Three people influential for Christine for habit development are:   

1. BJ Fogg- he believes you can cultivate the skill of creating habits. He practices creating tiny habits (more below).  

  2. Martha Beck- a master life coach and sociologist. Teaches the use of the "turtle step"; notion that we just make change or create a routine by starting with small turtle steps. 

3. Anne Lamott, author-"bird by bird" is a metaphor (and book title) she uses to describe how she coached her son into finishing a long report. Her son sam had a school project on birds where he was overwhelmed; she worked with him and told him just to do it "bird by bird", one bird a day; one bird at a time. 


We're going to find the "tiny habits", "turtle steps", each "bird" in our goal behaviour. Every routine and resolution we look to creating can be seen as a series of behaviours or steps. When you think of your desired habit, try to think of what the initiating behaviours are for it. E.g. if you are trying to start meditating, maybe the first step is sitting on your meditation cushion. 


BJ Fogg- "tiny habit" is something you do once a day or more. It needs to take less than 30 seconds. IT should be really easy so that there is no resistance in our brain. The easier the behaviour, the less it depends on our motivation. The tiny habit can be expanded on; it is about practicing and not necessarily accomplishing the entire goal right now. It's about laying the neural pathways for establishing the initiating behaviour for this habit. BJ Fogg practices his three tiny habits program more to demonstrate the skills for learning new habits; he believes this is the critical piece: learning the skill to teach ourselves new habits. 

More examples and info excerpted from BJ Fogg's website and course "3 tiny habits" (in italics) are below.   


Exercises from the course: 


1. (Review: what is your anchor for your goal behaviour?)

What are some tiny habits your desired behaviour that you can accomplish in 30 seconds or less? Which ones will require very little effort? Which ones are you going to be able to do it at least once a day? 


2.  Write it like this: After I do (anchor or trigger behaviour) X….then I will do Y…..  

examples: after I walk in the door from work (anchor), I will put on my workout clothes. After I arrive home, I will hang up my keys by the door. After I finish breakfast I will play one scale on the piano. 


3. What is your REWARD? It needs to be immediately after the tiny habit/step: can be a physical action e.g. fist pump, "yay me" to yourself, something that cues your brain that this is worth doing over again because it feels good!  


4. Is there anything you need to set up to make your tiny habit easy to do? 

e.g. if you are going running, put your clothes right where you will see them. BJ Fogg says "arrange the world around you so it makes your new habit easy to do".


Bonus: Mentally rehearse your new tiny habit: this helps to "grease the wheels" . 

Try to do your new habit without reminders if you can. It's okay if you need to for the first few days, but you really want this to be generated internally. 


More examples and info excerpted from BJ Fogg's website and course "3 tiny habits"(in italics):

"After I brush, I will floss one tooth."

"After I pour my morning coffee, I will text my mom.” 

"After I start the dishwasher, I will read one sentence from a book.”

“After I walk in my door from work, I will get out my workout clothes.”

“After I sit down on the train, I will open my sketch notebook.”

"After I hear any phone ring, I will exhale and relax for 2 seconds.” 

“After I put my head on the pillow, I will think of one good thing from my day.”

“After I arrive home, I will hang my keys up by the door.”


Celebrate success

One last instruction about creating new habits . . .


Each time you do your new Tiny Habit, you need to celebrate your success. Perhaps you say “Victory!” to yourself. Or say “I’m awesome” or whatever. Feel the emotion of success. Perhaps you can think, “If nothing else goes right today, I at least did this one thing right. I’m awesome!” Again, I know this stuff may sound goofy, but it works. In my method you need to declare victory; you need to feel good about your Tiny Habit. Why? Because you are reinforcing yourself. The stronger you feel a positive emotion after your Tiny Habit, the faster it will become automatic in your life. (Please reread that last sentence.)


I’ve listed 10 modes of celebration. See examples in this slideset:


Don’t make it painful  It’s important that you not feel pain when you do your new habit. For example, if you tell me you’re going to do 50 pushups, I know for sure pushups will not become a new habit for you. Doing 50 pushups is painful. If you feel pain, you must revise and make the Tiny Habit easier (like 2 pushups). Why? Because if you feel pain, your brain will find ways to avoid the behavior in the future. In contrast, if you feel happy after you do the behavior, then your brain will remind you to do it again in the future.


In some ways, we humans are not so complicated. We avoid pain and we seek pleasure. I’ve designed 3 Tiny Habits for this reality. The key is to practice (in the right way)


(End of excerpt from BJ Fogg's 3 tiny habits course).  


This is really helpful for so many things - thank you for sharing it with us. 

The bed thing is really tricky because in a way it is too heavily anchored with cleaning teeth getting undressed, putting out ones cigar and the light and the cat, and everything else becomes far more attractive than all those would be anchors. Is it best to do all those chore anchor things way ahead of time, or should each of those be broken down and have their own sub anchor? One tooth cleaned, half a pyjama...  The alternative seems to me to be to put some of those anchors in the bed, the anchors actually being those things you would normally procrastinate with, but perhaps that establishes negative habits.   Good luck with it all 

my small steps

okay; so I know that I said I was working on sleep, and I am. But I'm having trouble finding anchors and habits directly related to those right before bed. But I believe the following are important daily habits that will help to cultivate good sleep habits as well. So I've picked three things: 

1. so I'm still working on sitting up with my alarm in the morning. It's a good way to coax myself out of bed. REWARD- coffee (is this too long?). I should set it up in the evening- my cup and stuff ready. 

2. I'm also working on taking steps towards exercise in the morning. So after I make my coffee,  I will put on my exercise pants.  REWARD: victory dance. Yes, a victory dance. 

3. And then for moving towards sleep: after I put on my pajamas, I will set my alarm for the morning. REWARD: Yay! I did it! to myself.

I believe this will help to get me focused on the morning and getting to sleep, but we'll see. I'm having trouble with anchors and stuff for evening rituals...getting to bed on time is a big problem for me! Speaking of that, I'm going to bed now. Way too late, but it's good to get back to this stuff.


Great video clip includes procrastination

I found a great clip on youtube with an interview of Charles Duhigg, who wrote the Habit book (?the power of habit?). He mentions procrastination in it as an example. 

I think there is a lot of the material Christine had in the recent habit course that is touched on in this video- link below. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

I'll be back to post later today about day 3.




Bad day today. No post. I felt stressed and came home and freaked out. I feel like I try really hard and if I don't do it, then no one else seems to care how things get done. Messes get left everywhere. Routines are not consistent. Clutter peeks out from all places but there's little acceptance that it is a problem; I guess it's not a problem for them, just for me. Sometimes reality really really sucks. So back on board. OK. Wallowing in my sorrow won't get me anywhere. 

I'll post day 3 tomorrow.





Solidarity AllOverThePlace, I'm sorry you came home to mess and a lack of consideration, I hope tomorrow is a better day.

It's an inside job...

Thanks for the posts

Your notes on the first two days have been great. 

Yes, it's tough living with people because you don't have total control. Hope you have a better day today. 

Thank you!!!

Thanks so much to you both for your kind words. They mean a lot! I feel better today and there has been some discussion in the house around expectation and responsibility. And when I get stressed, I get really perfectionistic about things and maybe just a little bit (or maybe a lot) b*tchy...

I'm getting back on the train today.



Day 2- Autopilot

I'm continuing to review the material from an awesome online course by Christine Carter on habit formation. Day two is about getting your brain on autopilot so the desired habit takes less effort in everyday life. These are my notes; tried to keep them as simple and accurate as I could. 

3 Foundations of a habit: 1. anchor, 2. the routine/habit itself, and 3. the reward

-doing something new requires a lot of energy, willpower and effort

-when we get tired or stressed, our efforts start to fail because our willpower is depleted throughout the day 

-our brain's "backup" is the basal ganglia- where habits are stored- once it is programmed it requires very little/no effort to accomplish truly amazing feats; if you want more evidence of this she recommends reading charles duhig's book, specifically where he details michael phelps olympic training strategies around habits

-habits are a critical cornerstone for our happiness: 40 % of our actions daily aren't actual decisions but are habits


-charles duhig defines habit as: the choice that all of us deliberately make at some point but then stop thinking about but continue doing, often everyday


-routines can make us feel habitually good or productive; they can make us feel bad as well


-to understand the energy consumption behind this better, think of the brain activity required to do something new

e.g. starting a new exercise routine- need to decide what you're going to do, what you're going to wear, when, etc., but when it is a habit all that brain activity ceases. We know when those decision areas in our brain quiet down (i.e. behaviours become automatic) then we don't need to think very much to do something that was previously very difficult for us. This is very energy efficient for us. 


Bad habits or routines can be altered to be more productive; but to stop a bad habit alone is very very difficult (not recommended!). The habit centre of our brain is very very powerful. Rather work on altering the habit by working with the existing anchor and reward. Neutral habits can be expanded to include a new resolution. 


The net/net here is that using willpower to change a behaviour is very hard, but when the habit is established, the change comes much more effortlessly. This gives us lots of energy for other things.


1. Anchor: the behaviour that cues or triggers the habit. It tells the brain to go into autopilot and which habit to use. e.g. can be external cue -alarm in morning; can be internal i.e. feeling an emotion e.g. feeling anger anger while driving- can be a cue to take a deep breath 


2. write down the specific action-by-action habit you are trying to cultivate: what is going to happen after the anchor?

To establish habit, it needs to be done in the same order daily (preferably). 


3. REWARD: can be as simple as thinking "yay me!" gives the self a little hit or feeling of accomplishment (should be simple, done in 30s or less).This simple reward can be enough to make an activity into a habit. 


Brainstorm other positive outcomes that would be something you would come to enjoy/anticipate positively with your habit (favourite music for working out, the sweat of a workout). The brain will start to expect these rewards and will help to create the automaticity of the habit- it will cause you to start CRAVING the reward. e.g. when the alarm goes off in the morning, you can start to crave exercising.  ;)


sleep habit refinement

1. Anchor- I need to think about this one! I have an evening routine I have been working on but I would not say it is firmly established. Perhaps this is key? Otherwise I have trouble thinking of something that is consistent in the evening that I could rely on as an anchor. It may need to be an alarm- ha ha, just like waking up, but one for going to bed. 

Perhaps my sleep refinement habit includes generating a little quick bedtime ritual that I can anticipate as a positive daily occurrence. I do have this where I listen to something I enjoy as I fall asleep. And I love sleeping. ;)

Another reward for me can be intentional gratitude I can feel towards myself for taking care of my health and well being by getting enough sleep.  

 so- anchor is the alarm for now. I will set it daily at a default time of 10pm. 

2.  the routine itself- so simple yet I didn't anticipate all those silly steps required to actually go to bed! -pajamas, brush teeth, wash face, get music, turn down bed, turn off room lights, put phone onto do not disturb, turn off bed light 

3. reward- gratitude moment 

my reward

people say motivation won't last. neither does bathing, that's why we recommend it daily

zig ziglar

hi aotp

again, thank you for sharing

my reward i also decided is the feeling of being good to myself, that feeling of being all clean in a nice clean bed. i have wondered if i should have made it more specific, although i do love the feeling of going to bed after a bath.

my anchor is my bath foam, it is a luxury. anchor as in i walk in to the bathroom and see my bathfoam. it's not particually expensive but sometimes i don't allow myself to use it, as i see it as precious (?).

Day 1 Creating a habit

I had to search through some piles before I found my day 1 worksheet again. But here it is for anyone who might want to delve into trying to create a habit for 21 days. Some things I would have found useful to know prior to starting this whole thing:

-this is more brainstorming; don't feel the need to start the habit you mark down right away; the next week (and really the next few weeks) are about how to really work towards that habit and make it stick. What I found most useful is the tiny habit piece- so start with one small step towards your habit and do that. Or just work on the process daily i.e. via brainstorming etc.  

1. Make a list of all the things you'd like to resolve to do differently.

2. Put a star next to the big habits (those that take more than 1 minute or so to accomplish everyday). Put two stars next to resolutions that will make you noticeably and lastingly happier.

3. Decide on the one big thing that you'd like to focus on in the next 21 days. Circle that.

4. Do you need to reframe you resolution as a positive habit or behaviour change? What would you like to start doing in the next 21 days?

5. What do you need to know or learn before you can really see yourself developing this habit?

6. What specific behaviours are involved?

7. How do you want to feel when you're doing this habit?

8. Why are you making this resolution? How will you personally benefit from getting into this habit?

9. Who else in your life will feel the positive effects of your change? Aare there any other good reasons to make and keep this resolution?

Which reasons really resonante with you as truly motivating? Circle those reasons.

Bonus: do a vision board.  

day 1 revision

people say motivation won't last. neither does bathing, that's why we recommend it daily

zig ziglar

i've gone though my day 1 worksheet

as you might recall my life was in tatters when we started this and i choose to focus on small incy changes around self care ( combination of long standing pain and christmas blues had got me down)

my hygiene i'm happy to say with the help of the programme is automatic now, as is my eating well (v healthy) and sleep is good.

i noticed something on my list of things to change that i then went on to ignore because it was too massive, it's something that i left undone for so long that just kept being a dark shadow over me. now i have decided to tackle it.

it will be the most beneficial thing i can do

it dosn't fall under small behaviours and maybe i shiold have picked something more managabe like exercise daily- as i'm writing this i'm starting to change my mind as the thing i have to tackle raises so much panic

i'll sleep on it

thanks AOTP :)


1. Housework, diet, exercise, study, meditation, organisation, writing.

2. Housework* exercise* study* meditation** 


4. 'I make a stronger commitment to myself'. Yogic breathing might be the best way in to meditation for me, also because of its health benefits.

5. That there is a regular time and place for me to practice this, and in that time and place I have permission to breathe and connect, I don't have to go anywhere and I don't have to do anything.

6. As close to 6pm each day as I can manage, I go to my bedroom and spend ten minutes (or longer) doing 'alternate nostril breathing'.

7. I want to feel calm, relaxed and alert. I want to feel as if I'm doing something good for myself.

8. I'm making this resolution because for many years I've believed that meditation would be beneficial for me and make me brainier!!!! I think that getting into this habit would help me work better on the other stuff, like reading and note-taking, eating a healthier diet, being more present etc.

9. I think my daughter would benefit from me being happier and more connected to the positive spiritual aspects of life.

Connecting to spirit and being able to access the unlimited power of the universe for the good of myself and those around me.

Bonus: do a vision board.  That will have to wait for now but maybe later...

It's an inside job...

number 5

people say motivation won't last. neither does bathing, that's why we recommend it daily

zig ziglar

this is wonderful! i'm so going to try for the mindset of adopting this.

re no 5

Glad you like it Jay, someone said it to me just a couple of days ago and I had a right 'aha!' moment!! :)

It's an inside job...

really appreciate this

people say motivation won't last. neither does bathing, that's why we recommend it daily

zig ziglar

thank you so much AOTP, really appreciate you sharing your notes, it's very beneficial to me since i don't have the skills of note taking/being precise.

please do carry on posting i check in every day and am also reviewing the programme.

ps must carry on with things now, will check in again tonight

have an amazing day

jay Smile

My sleep commitment

So here are my answers to the questions in the post above:

#1. and 2. Oh, there are so many things to work on!

exercise** meditate** clean regularly (too vague)*, complete my paperwork**, pay my bills on time*, create a budget*, be nicer to my family**, blah blah blah, get more sleep every night**. 

2. Put a star next to the big habits (those that take more than 1 minute or so to accomplish everyday). Put two stars next to resolutions that will make you noticeably and lastingly happier.

3. I think I may carry on with the sleep theme- continue with getting up with my alarm in the morning as well as getting 7-8 hours of sleep per night. 

4. Do you need to reframe you resolution as a positive habit or behaviour change? What would you like to start doing in the next 21 days? 

-in bed with alarm set for 8 hours sleep 

5. What do you need to know or learn before you can really see yourself developing this habit?

-how to wrap up my tasks in the evening; don't get sucked into the internet; refine my routine 

6. What specific behaviours are involved?

-fine tuning my evening routine; staying on track; not adding new/impulsive items to my evening routine; rewarding myself with fun things to keep me motivated 

7. How do you want to feel when you're doing this habit?

-well rested! satisfied/content that I am exerting effort to take care of myself in this way and set an example for my family 

8. Why are you making this resolution? How will you personally benefit from getting into this habit?

-feel better, feel more focused and energetic in the day, rise more easily in the morning, better mood 

9. Who else in your life will feel the positive effects of your change? Are there any other good reasons to make and keep this resolution?

-family, friends, work 

Which reasons really resonante with you as truly motivating? Circle those reasons.


Bonus: do a vision board.  

Day 21!!

I think it's pretty cool that we had this ongoing dialogue about the course here! I found the exchange to be motivating and engaging; it helped me to stick with it knowing that you guys were checking it out. I wish she would do a part 2!!! 

I feel a bit thrown off today- big stress today, questioning myself and feeling the impulse to overcommit to something at work or risk disapproval by those higher up. however, if I manage the anxiety I believe I can better navigate this muddy water without losing my mind. 

I guess these are the tests. Listening to Christine I feel motivated to keep going; lapses are normal, most important to keep going and not to have a complete relapse. But it's also important for me to listen to my body and mind for the messages of how much is reasonable to expect from myself, and if there is a significant amount of resistance, perhaps it is too much too soon. 

I will go back tomorrow to revisit the course material and do it again. Bit by bit. Anyone interested?




i'm interested!

people say motivation won't last. neither does bathing, that's why we recommend it daily

zig ziglar

hi AOTH,

yes, i found that knowing you guys were doing it to and our drop ins very encouraging.

yesterday i knew i would feel at a loss this morning not having christine so i searched around on you tube to find an appropriate morning lift, i selected  my morning ritual by project life mastery, i enjoyed it, it's much the same as chrisines and lots of others but i find i need the motivation of a positive morning message- in audio. i do miss christine though!

it's good that you're not over committing, i think you talked about a cut off point before? did you make decisions? pre decisions

thank you again so much for bring the happiness programme to me/us it really has been a (i want to use the word 'godsend' but i'm atheist) so i'll say an incredible boost.

i'm absolutely keeping my routine)) a few slips but i know they are slips, one off's, i get straight back on plan.

speak later

have an amazing day

jay Smile

Hi Jay

That's great that you found a positive message in the morning. What a good idea for starting your day. 

Cut-off points- Thanks for remembering that. That's a big one for me and one to contemplate. Taking Christine's suggestions into account, I would have to say that instead of trying to stop something (especially mid-way) that I need to do (i.e. if I spend too long on trying to do a report or something perfectly) that perhaps I should try to add a habit onto it to change it slightly.

I think maybe it might be something like having a first go at a task with basic expectations, and then to move onto the next thing. And then to give myself the option of revisiting the basic task to upgrade it in "free time". I'm wondering if I might find I am content with the basic completed task. 

I am so happy you've enjoyed the program as much as I have! It's made a huuuuge difference for me in how I approach things; I'm much more likely to persevere in the face of difficulty right now. I hope to continue to incorporate the content into my life. 

Have an amazing day, too. Smile


How is everything going?

Been thinking about everyone but sorry- checked out for a few days. We headed out of town for the weekend and I made an effort to stay off of my gadgets. I've got to catch up on the course a bit, but I did listen to it and just need to review. I want to review the whole thing, which I think I said before. 

Anyways, more tomorrow! 


hi all 3 tiny habits course

Jay you triggered me to double check what aotp said about a course starting on the 21st... well i just signed up... but too late for the 21st thats full - theres another one on the 28th..that Ive signed up to.. not completely sure what it will entail.. but looks like it could be a little bit of positivity..good stuff!

Not sure what other online courses are out there... there must be some.. or some daily prompts...If I find any I'll let you know.. I hear you on the listening to something positive in the morning thing - its a really great way to start the day! Rather than (sometimes if left to my own devices) trawling thru the internet reading news stories that I'd rather not read really as I'm not learning anything/they don't effect me/they're mostly depressing... and when I get fed up with that moving onto social media which hardly ever leaves me feeling fullfilled at the end of it! ...

Anyways oh the course aotp mentioned was bj fogg 3 tiny habits... worth a pop! lets keep trying to improve! part of my procrastination today involved coming across and buying (in a second hand book shop so not seeking it out) a book about procrastination... we shall see if it helps! so far it just stopped me from doing what I needed to do today as I was reading it instead! ha! :-)


hi dotty

people say motivation won't last. neither does bathing, that's why we recommend it daily

zig ziglar

thank you, i signed up for the 28th also! we can be buddies in it!

i'm definatly staying more focused and have cut down on pointless web browsing, i did used to find some interesting suff by leisurly browsing, but ultimately i found it leaves me feeling empty. if i'm going to read the news i st an on line alarm clock for 10 minutes, geez i used to spend hours drifting, the clock makes me more awre of time.

have an amazing day

jay Smile

how to respond to setbacks

hi all

isn't it srange how just hearing christine say congratulations on making it this far feels so good. it hadn't occured to me before that. what am i going to do after tomorrows final day?? have looked in to it, can't pay. my morning routine is now entrenched, green smothie while listening to the happiness programme, then popping on here to see how you all are doing.


todays day 20, how to respond to setbacks i found really useful, i've allready been using stratagies, INDECISION is my downfall, my 1st basic goal was to have a nightly bath (then i built up around that) before the programme, i would be trying to decide wether to have a bath or not, belive me, for hours. that is how bad my decision making is, it may not be that, it may be shall i go to the shop, needing something for the morning. i wear myself out trying to decide, massive debate in my head. i just go to bed super early. it may not be productive but it helps switch off the internal dialogue that pesters me. i just decide to deal with it tomorrow.

so this session 'responding' to setbacks has been good, i can't find another stragy other than go to bed though. maybe i should lay out some simple task i can do, some sketching maybe, it has to be something off line.

impuse control, yesterday i put a downer on my whole day by looking on the face book page of someone i have 20 years of history with but we don't speak anymore, we are binded togeher as they are my childs father. i knew before i looked that i shouldn't... i'm going to start this as a thread elsewhere it's too big for here

asides today i feel ok, fairly positive. yesterdays setback of no impulse contol has left me knowing i have so much work to do on myself..the good things are my eating is ok, just enough, i hav lots of heathy food, i batch cooked a soup yesterday a predecision!

how is everyone doing? what are your improvents?

i've pretty much got the hygeine, eating and sleeep under contol, i can't slip on those as they are my foundations, now i'm looking to fill my day with productive things. i have instructions to exercise daily and keep a detailed log.

if i would sort out the spare room, i could use it to do art.....that is a major project (the decluttering)

@AOTP i thought i recall reading there was a programme starting on the 21st but i can't find it now, could you repeat that please

have a good day everyone



21st- it was BJ Fogg's 3 tiny habits

Hi Jay- I think it was BJ Fogg's three tiny habits. 


keep up the good work!

Thanks for your replies/suggestions to my comments. I cant work out how to get an alert if someone has posted a reply..and keep missing comments.. maybe I need to subscribe to the thread.. I'll have look when I've finished writing this.

It's good to read your small steps/set backs and good to see you encouraging each other :-)

I signed up for the christines course but I keep missing the videos... with the time difference.. unfortunately I don't get them in the morning - which would be a perfect time for me to watch them.. but they come online in the afternoon and i don't always get onto the computer in the evening. (this could also just be an excuse :-))

Anyway keep up the good work!


hi dotty!

thank you, you too Smile


missed yesterday's lesson

Hi guys,

just been reading over your last couple of posts, very encouraging, my mind's suddenly gone blank though!!! What did I want to say???

Yikes. I'll check in again later...


It's an inside job...

hi hazyjane

how's it going?

are you off uni due to snow, bet it's so much fun waliking the dogs in this

have a good day



I wish!!!

Hi Jay,

no as far as I know I'll still have to get to Uni tomorrow, even though it's my birthday!!!! Woo-hoo, happy birthday me!!!! :) However I'll keep an eye on the website, they might cancel if there's any justice in the world...

I fell over about five times walking the dogs earlier, they thought it was hilarious, really slippy paths but downhill so it was like I was sledging. On my good coat too. No damage done apart from to my dignity...

Jay, and AOTP of course, and now Dotty, it's been really nice having this thread going, I feel like you're my mates now, like we've gone through something together and forged a bond. And I didn't even realise you were a woman until earlier when you mentioned 'the father of your child': I honestly thought 'Jay' was a man!!! Such is the anonymity (blessed anonymity) of the internet. Anyway, I hope we carry on being able to support each other. And the art, and decluttering? My thoughts are, don't put off the art until the decluttering is done, just start. Something you hear on PA a lot, not to wait until you 'feel like' doing something, take some action and the motivation usually follows. Advice I should follow myself!!!

Right, I need to get off this damned computer now and have a bath, hopefully my back won't hurt so much if I have a good soak,

see you tomorrow for the last day,


It's an inside job...

hi jane

people say motivation won't last. neither does bathing, that's why we recommend it daily

zig ziglar

happy happy belated bithday!!

i know i feel the same, like we're bonded, been on a journey together. i hope we do all carry on to support each other Smile

i posted above about some things i've found on you tube, i'm just searching for positive morning messages, so if you find anything, do share

thanks for the advice on the art thing, i havn;t started yet, i know you're right but i have this thing that everything has to be perfect then i can start!! i wish i could not be so rigid..i'm carrying on with the decluttering, i have got more ruthless

i'm not doing anything exciting, i just want to get the foundations of my life in order then i can decide what to do...i'm thing a pt art couse in septmeber

..the snow sounds fun, my neighbour is building a massive igloo with a woodburner in the centrem it's ace

have an amazing day



Happy Birthday HazyJane

...Annoying that you have to go to Uni! I had my birthday recently and made sure I was as far away from work as possible :-)

It's snowy here and was hoping I could work from home today but doesn't look like I'll be so lucky!

I've missed so many of Christines videos that I was thinking about buying the premium version... but not sure I can afford it at the moment.. or if it's quite what I need.. Some of it sounds really good from what you guys have said.. but the videos I did catch didn't quite nail it for me.. but maybe that's because they were taken completely out of context..

Well I'll muse on that.. wishing you a good birthday! And aotp and jay good days too!


Another Happy Birthday Wish for HazyJane!

Hope you had a good day with some happy celebrating! 


play offense

hi guys

i've been listening to the programme consistently (missed day 12, thanks AOTP)

feeling a bit lost on it, my concentration is bad, realised recently that i've developed 'learning stress', i think it;s part of my condition, trying to compenstate for bad memory and concentration by 'super conecntarting', i need to do some reseach on that.

so feeling a bit lost on the programme, especially when there;s no worksheet. i do enjoy it though, firmly established habit of drinking smoothis and listening to it. even though i think it's not going in my life is massively more managable, perhaps on a subconcious level i'm 'getting' it. i need to revisit my worksheets. today i'm tackeling my eating, preplanning what i'm eating for the week ahead. i love this predecision thing having a name.

my sleep is much improved. but a lot of my time is unproductive, it's like i have established a routine with lots of dead time. i'm considering planning an afternoon nap, i've resisted napping always but it might be the way forward? all of the hours after say 2pm are dead because i'm so fatiged, i've been going to bed really early and sleeping within an hour, which for an insomiac is brilliant.

the have a snack day, i listened to christine in the morning thinking yeah i know all this, then somehow that day and since i ate more regulary. sleep and eating sorted, this is incredible.

predesions: i bought a bunch of really warm soft tops that i can put on in the morning, now i have enough to put a fresh one on everyday. sounds simple, but i hadn't done it before!!

feeling kinda positive, i need to focus now on getting stress levels down, exercise is key and i have to start keeping a diary of it, log it properly. this is what my physiotherapist was talking to me about today. too much cortisol being released into my system is causing my pain levels to be too high.

i need to find a meditation tape (?) that i can load on to my ipod (that was part of my pre planning). i need to do that today so any suggestions at all? i like christines voice, i only like a kindly voice.

so this thing of 'where's all the fun gone' is kinda bothering me, i wasn't having fun anyway and the rewards of having a managable life are great but i still feel i'll miss out. spontanis times? looks like thats part of the past? if we are to live by the routine without will power it's all about everyday, same time. perhaps after a while one can deviate with out causing the routine to collapse afterall in life the unexpected does happen. thinking how good life could be if i had a sense of CONTROL, to feel in charge of my life.

jay Smile

January 17

Hi Jay

I know it's hard for me to stay positive when life often feels overwhelming. And the "where is the fun gone?" maybe is resistance? And perhaps resistance is an indication that there's too much, too soon? I'm feeling very very overwhelmed today at work, lots of negative tapes playing in my head. 

I also find the programme a little confusing at times; I do think it is a good idea to look back and review things. I was also thinking of perhaps doing it again (not signing up, but just repeating the info/worksheets).

Meditation- do they offer MBSR where you live? It's meditation based stress reduction, an evidence based program that is offered by many hospitals and clinics to address a variety of issues. I believe it was originally for pain and now is expanded to a long list of conditions. It often is covered and maybe something to ask a doctor about. I've done it a few times, and the structure of the program was very helpful for me.

As far as tapes- did you get any of the recommendations Christine mentioned? I might have them listed if you missed them.  

And predecisions- I buy most of my clothes in one colour and most of my pants in the same style I love AND same colour. Seems odd to some people, but it works for me and now I realize it was a predecision!

I am trying to keep focused on the small steps; everything else is gravy. When I feel like that's not enough, I remember that small steps in the right direction are more likely to lead to long term change. I truly have a lifetime of unproductive tendencies that are the "path most taken" for me. 

And in terms of living the same way all the time, I think what the bottom line is that if we take care of the stuff we need to do everyday with the least amount of energy possible (and our hygiene, bill paying, cooking, work etc. basics really take up most of our days) then we have more energy to do the other fun stuff. And I also think we'll have more energy to be creative about the everyday boring stuff. And I absolutely agree- the sense of control would be amazing. Amazing.  

I have to run b/c I am procrastinating.



thank you, i read this just after you'd posted it and wnt on to research MBSR, i'd never heard of it. i was so impressed, trouble is it's very expensive, i'm living on an amount of money that no matter how careful i am i falling in to more debt each month. i'm selling anything i don't use on ebay to try to balance this, hit and miss though. i wanted to declutter anyway

so MBSR, i'm so glad you suggested it, i went off on tangents and found lots of other interserting stuff as well. i'd never heard of that specific teaching before. i used to go to my local temple, i have intentions of going back.

i have made a predecisoin that i will have a cut off time in the evening, i'm good for nothing concentration wise, so looking for class's i had to restrict to daytime. i'm looking for a tai chi daytime class, no luck. the temples beginners class's are night time so instead of starting it then now attending and feeling bad about myself for it, i predecided, i'm not doing evenings. i see that as a positive thing

i had been mulling over having a daytime nap, i've decided against it though, think it would be more bother and mess with my whole routine as my night sleep is very goood at the moment, i don't wake feeling refreshed but at least i don't feel jet lagged most of the time

i'll keep working on what ever i can find free on line for meditatin, but if you have any links they would be most welcome

rigidity: yes! this is working, i have a feeling that i may soon feel in control, i went to my local pub yesyerday for a while, i didn't have a backlog of stuff to do and i felt good, only stayed a while, enjoyed myself. my life i feel is quite loney so it's good to break it up like this. it didn't wreck my routine, i came home had a bath and went to bed. however, much as i didn't want to wreck my routine realistically there were 2 reasons it was a very sensible pub visit. 1 no one was really up for a big one, or making plans 2 my lack of funds. i have in the past gone to the pub and not made it home, spent loads of money and either had a great time OR been left with 'why did i do that'. so yeaterday's visit was sensible and i like to think christine and PA influence have somthing to do with it.

the clothes thing: nigella lawson does that also, same clothes, i think there;s quite a few successful people who do. it probably saves a lot of time and effert, and DECISIONS!! so well done, you;re well ahead on that one!

i've been listening to the programme every day, when there's no work sheet i forget it quickly, even listening twice, i'm not dedicated enough to make notes

i'll be sorry when it ends but i have to be so careful when making decisions about the best use of cash, not sure i could pay for it

oh nearly forgot to say i started an art class this week, nothing major, just one afternoon, i did art years ago, it;s good to be in a studio, it shloud be managable, it's not far and class is 2 hrs.

was shattered after though

have just listened to day 19. will listen again

wish i had listened to day 17 again, deal with difficult emotions, it was gone when i tried in the morning bah!

hope you're good


Meditation stuff

Hi Jay, 

MBSR is sometimes offered in hospitals as part of a stress reduction program, but it can be tricky to find sometimes. I'm not sure what your health care system is like.

There is a link I really like for free teachings with a buddhist background; some of them are more self-help based and others are more heavily into a buddhist focus. But anyways, the talks are free to download and are based on a donation system (kind of like PA!). it's Some of the more popular ones I am aware of include: Jack Kornfield, Sylvia Boorstein....I'm drawing a blank on the rest right now.

You can also check out Brene Brown's Tedtalk on Shame (google it- it's great). If you look her up in itunes or on youtube you might find some more interviews with her. I find they are more animated and interesting to listen to than perhaps an audiobook.  

Hope that helps!



thank you aotp!

people say motivation won't last. neither does bathing, that's why we recommend it daily

zig ziglar

i checked them out quickly yesterday and loned up brene brown to listen to this morning. i clould empatheise with her, i found it quite inconclusive though, will keep exploring the subject

thank you


Interesting reference, will look it up, thank you.


Review and Recover

I was able to load the talk for yesterday with much difficulty for some reason. And my evening schedule was changed later than usual because of an appointment. When I came home (late) I did dishes and then watched the video and then it was very L.A.T.E. Hmmmm....makes me think of the recognition that when I'm stressed (i.e. tired) I might not make the 'wisest' decision, and sure enough, this morning I didn't get up with my alarm.

Last night I talked myself out of my alarm wake up because it was so late. But this morning I feel regretful and wish I had the self control to wrap things up earlier and go to bed so I could wake earlier. NOT judging, just evaluating and reflecting. Perhaps something to do in this situation is to predecide earlier in the week in planning how the evening routine will go on those days that are not straightforward. This way I don't have to rely on myself to do it in the moment. 

I enjoyed the talk, but didn't have the focus at that time to review my resolution more thoroughly and revise it officially from getting up to exercise to getting up with my alarmeverymorning. That needs some tweaking but it lacks a little bit of the fun factor. So I'll put that in my pocket to think about for now. 

The other thing that is challenging is letting a task go though it's not perfect or totally complete (i.e. dishes- there were a lot last night and perhaps I could have done half and the rest the next day...but my brain does not like that. The brain is a funny thing...) 

Well, though I haven't figured it out perfectly, I am going to move on with my morning.  

On with the day!