• Call Now: 405.341.3554
  • Connect

Edmond Family Counseling Articles

Articles by the Counselors at Edmond Family Counseling

Being a Chronic Procrastinator

Thursday, August 13, 2015

By Sheila Stinnett 

As the last days of summer are upon us,  I would like to discuss a behavior which continually haunts me,  is unproductive and generally just makes me feel bad,  my urge to procrastinate.   When I glanced at my refrigerator this morning, I saw plastered to its front, my ambitious list of summer “to do projects”.  This list was obviously made in the spring when I was thinking warmer weather would be a key component in my transformation to a DIY super hero. 

With my flower beds in shambles,  my garage a disaster area, and my windows waiting for a fairy godmother to magically make the fabric on my dining room table turn into curtains, I am not puzzled by why these projects are not finished, but more by why I couldn’t I even get started.

I do know that I am not alone, as many as twenty percent of us identify ourselves as chronic procrastinators.  Missing deadlines, late with bills, surrounded by unfinished projects, spouting a continual stream of excuses, procrastinators appear to be the real world version of Alice’s White Rabbit constantly muttering “I’m late, I’m late”.   Looks, however, can be deceiving.  Procrastination is not considered a time management issue, but rather a problem with an individual’s ability to self-regulate. 

Research has shown that there are three different types of procrastinators.   The first type is the thrill seeker.  These individuals thrive on the intense stress generated by the last second rush of finishing tasks.  Second type is the avoider.  Overcome with fear of failure or driven by perfectionism “avoiders” often substitute a preferred task for a non-preferred task, looking for anything they can use as a distraction.  Last are the decisionally impaired.   Unable to make any final decisions, these people use ambivalence and confusion as a tool to distance or remove themselves from taking responsibility should a situation or project turn out poorly.

Individuals who procrastinate often tell lies to themselves and others causing difficulties in their relationships with family, friends and co-workers.  They may experience financial problems due to the squandering of resources on supplies for projects which will never be finished.  Stress caused by procrastination can result in health related issues such as insomnia, gastrointestinal problems, headaches, elevated blood pressure, and substance abuse.  Procrastinating can weaken a person’s immune system causing an increase of infections.   

The good news is procrastinators are made, they are not born.  It is a learned behavior which can be unlearned with work and support.  Strategies which can be utilized to reduce procrastinating behaviors are as simple as setting realistic goals, writing out a statement of intentions, learning how to say no, working to break large tasks into smaller more manageable ones, and setting up a reward system for yourself once a task has been completed.

List making can be helpful.  However, once it is made it is important to continually edit the list by eliminating tasks that you never really plan on doing or by removing tasks that have been on your list longer than a year.   Most importantly when estimating the amount of time you think it will take you to complete a task always increase the time by 100 percent. 

If procrastination is significantly impacting your health, your ability to maintain employment or engage in functional personal relationships, professional help may be needed.   A highly structured cognitive behavioral therapy program seems to be most effective in assisting individuals in overcoming struggles with procrastination.

As for my struggles with procrastination, unfortunately I will have to wait to address them until tomorrow as this article is due today and I must get it turned in ASAP.

Post has no comments.
Post a Comment

Captcha Image

Trackback Link
Post has no trackbacks.

Recent Posts


Emotions Teenagers Codependency Communication techniques for couples Positive Thinking Annie Sullivan Darcy McConnell Underage Drinking Sheila Stinnett Parenting and Cell Phones DIY Marriage counseling Ridley Scott Bias and memory HK pen Prevention Butane Honey Oil Suicide What is domestic violence How prevalent is domestic violence The Martian Book Reading New year’s resolution Isolation in teens Apps for Teens Disability When Teens Should Get a Cell Phone Back to School Young Adults Edmond Family Counseling bucket list Call of Duty Prom Child Abuse Drug Use Teens and cell phones Culture Summer Twitter Butane Hask Oil The Martian Movie Boundaries Character Development Teen Safety World Health Organization Oklahoma Department of Human Services Teen Parenting Marijuana Choices Communicating with your child Independent Living Feldman and Kravetz Self Image Schedule 1 Drug National Drug Threat Assessment Summary Will counseling work quickly Family Roles Eating Disorder Americans with Disabilities Act Jay Asher College Depression Teen Drug Use Bong Chad McCoy Setting Boundaries for Your Teen Emotional Development College Transitions Freshman Year ADA parenting college age kids Sanjay Gupta Divorce School Prescription Drugs Technology Microagression Amanda Percival What to do when you are laid off College Campus Communication Grounded Hope Setting Boundaries with Adult Children Political bias Stress Teen Suicide Learning Disabilites Dr. Ben Carson Audrey Woods How to manage anxiety Panic How to detect signs of depression Tumblr Parenting with purpose Food Allergies How do children process trauma Facebook Joshua and Rebecca Weigel College Age Children What Really Matters Helen Keller diet Summer time parenting Communicating with your teen Parenting through Divorce Golden Child spring Confidentiality History Retirement Planning Wax Domestic violence resources The Butterfly Circus Captain of Your Ship Child Development Role Models How many sessions do I need Lee Daniel Kravetz What Matters Most Program Limitations of counseling Holiday stress Therapy How to talk to your kids about terrorism Twenty Somethings Depression and social media Impact of Suicide Oklahoma Statute on Marijuana Substance Abuse Opiods Nutrition and stress Edmond Municipal Court Divorce with minor children Mayme White Miller Marriage brain Funding Risk taking Heroin Crisis Seniors Happiness How long should counseling take United States Drug Enforcement Agency Suicide Prevention for Teens Teens Use of Technology Parenting How to recognize domestic violence Changing Problem Behavior ADHD goals Strong Willed Child Detox Diet John Goetz School Teenage Development Working Parents Time Management Family Theory gadgets Bullying Micro-aggression HB 2249 Discipline Learning privilege Unemployment and depression Drinking in high school Early Treatment of Depression Hanna Baker Gun violence and mental health Chores for Teens AARP Mental Health Disciplining Teens Oklahoma drug use responsibility Grandparents as parents list Legalization of Marijuana Newsletter Andy Weir Heroin in the Suburbs Girl Strong Gender Roles Affluenza Holidays Parent peer pressure Speaker Listener Technique Self Investment Teenage perception of drug use Social Media Drug Abuse Snapchat Trauma Siblings in Conflict Ben Carson 13 Reasons Why NOT Prom guidelines for teens 5 Love Languages Normalcy 710 Prom safety Fidget Spinners Organization non-verbal communication Relationships Positive Illusions Positive Reinforcement Summer Plans for Teens Teenage Boys Dr. Rhonda Patrick David Feldman THE KETOGENIC DIET Great Depression Edmond drug use Grandparent Initiative Panic attacks Mild-Depression Entitlement Syndrome Cell Phones Procrastination Presidential debate Adult Children Alcohol Enabling Adult Children Aggregated News for Teens Goal Setting self-sabotage Co-Parenting Divorce THE PALEO DIET School Anxiety Is therapy forever Edmond GirlStrong Grandparenting Political Correctness Links between unemployment and depression high school Death How to control panic attacks Quinton Ellis Childhood depression Disasters Peers Why did the system fail Support Group Al McCormick Conflict Managing substance abuse Spanking Negative Thinking James Dobson Misconceptions of Smoking Marijuana Fear Parkland Shooter Self-Esteem Supersurvivors Brain Research Anger Donald Miller Parenting Teenagers Anxiety Belinda Crosier The Golden Years Community Suicide Prevention Programs Teens and Smartphones Dating The Miracle Worker Addiction Sexual Abuse Millenials Teen Jobs Consequences Personality Test Panic Disorder Tetra-Amelia Syndrome How common are panic attacks Instagram MEDITERRANEAN DIET Developmentally appropriate strategies for grief counseling Social anxiety personal growth Michael Jackson Jackie Shaw Bias Decision-Making 13 Reasons Why Waxing fads The Amazing Race Scapegoating Co-Parenting Class Suicide Prevention Recommendations Family Systems Theory Retirement Help for panic and anxiety Unemployment Marriage counseling Medical Use of Marijuana in Oklahoma Movies for Teens Teens and Time Management Terrorism and children Edmond Character Council Exercise treatment for depression Children Drugs Elizabeth Loftus


Call Us Now!