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.

New to the forum with a ray of hope

Guess I am a chronic procrastinator. I am used to doing everything in the eleventh hour right from my childhood. I didnt get hurt because I was above average. I used get through by the proverbial last straw.
In due course of time I sufferred. Gradually I became an alcoholic. Now I am sober for the past 7 months. I was a chain smoker but I have given up smoking for the past 2 months. One area where I am facing major problem is at work.
I procrastinate everyday. It's true I dont like some of the tasks assigned to me..but still...I amdoing this for the past 14 months. I do the things only when it achieves extreme do I come out of this..I really want to come out of it....I am so guilt driven, lost complete peace of mind...can somebody give me a dummies approach?

welcome, joeprem06!

I looked at your profile and saw you are from India. That's nice! You are our first member from India.

I also am sober. I stopped drinking and drugging over 10 years ago. I quit smoking cigarettes at the same time I quit everything else. It was hard, but oh so worth it - best thing I ever did in my life. You're still in your first year of sobriety, so be gentle with yourself. I hope you are going to AA meetings. They help a lot.

As you saw if you read the articles on the Web site, I believe that procrastination is an addictive disorder for many people - compulsive avoidance. I've noticed that people who procrastinate are more likely to have other addictive problems, such as with alcohol. (And I seem to be the only person who noticed this - no other Web site talks about it.) So you are by no means alone here!

Back to the problem at hand... You say you dislike your job. Can you find a new job and leave this one? What's keeping you there if you don't like it?

Procrastination is the grave in which opportunity is buried.

Welcome to the group, Joe

I think it's important to understand why you procrastinate.  (Then again, I'm an introspective kind of guy.)  What kinds of worries drive you away from your work?  The other half of this awareness is the understanding that "away from your work" isn't toward the end of those anxieties -- after all, those procrastinated tasks will still be around tomorrow.

Here is an attempt at a "For Dummies" approach: Start small, and start every day.  We all have good days and bad days, and we can't beat ourselves up for the bad days.  Just let them go.  When you go to work, make sure to do work first thing in the morning, and try to do nothing but work until noon or lunchtime.

This saves the latter part of the day for other activities, but it will also probably improve your productivity all by itself.  It did for me!


Thanks flex.

Thanks flex. I think and I am overqualified for this job but I am over it now. The other reason why I am not able to overcome procrastination is I have an exalted view of my prowess and when I fall short of it, I just give up.
Any particular reason why procrastion is such an integral part of me...

Perfectionism is pretty common

I think perfectionism is a common problem among people who procrastinate -- we put things off because we don't feel perfectly prepared, and then we end up disappointed in ourselves for the imperfect work we rush to hand in before a deadline.  "Imperfect" work which is often completely sufficient for the job at hand.

A lot of us perfectionists also bind up our self-image in our perceptions of the quality of work we do.  When we hand in imperfect work, we feel personally devalued.  When someone else finds flaws or errors in our work, it's even worse!

As part of the process of unlearning procrastination, we need to accept that we are not our work.  If we can build a secure self-image that isn't going to be attacked by every little mistake we make, we can tackle external issues like work from a much stronger position.


New Here Also

Hi everyone. I just joined two days ago and I am also a chronic procrastinator. Sheer will power is not enough to get me to accomplish the most basic necessary daily activities. This has been a serious problem my whole life. I read through the articles and they pretty much describe me to a T. I have tried listening to motivational cd's recently but they do not seem effective; I really need to be facing impending disaster in order to become spurred into action. It is important that I find a way or technique to permanently change this destructive behaviour because I am always getting into serious trouble as a result of it. Do regular users find the daily check ins/book ending available here helpful? Thanks


It's good to see your posting. I could identify with every word to posted. The check ins work for me, even though I ususally come out somewhat short of perfection. I'm self-employed, and live and work by myself, which gives the average chronic procrastinatior three strikes, but so far so good. I belong to a popular 12 step program, where I get alot of support. I hope we can have some online meetings here, even if they're impromptu mini-meetings. Please give this a try. We can all use support. Thanks.

I think bookending works

I think check-ins work because they make you more publicly accountable for what you say you're going to do.  A lot of us who procrastinate live with a constant anxiety that we're going to be discovered, and public postings about what we're going to do use that anxiety as a prod to get things going.

There are two parts to getting something done: deciding to do it and deciding when to do it.  Bookending works by making the "when" decision public, so we feel more need to follow through on it.

I don't participate in the bookending discussions, but that's because doing stuff online is one of my main methods of procrastination, and I'm trying to keep online time cut down to a more reasonable amount.


Try something new

Thanks a lot for your support. I will try not to base mu self-image on the work I produce and I will also try bookending from today.