From Tracie: How to Hold Yourself Back

Monday, June 14, 2010

How to Hold Yourself Back

Hi, my name is Tracie and I am a procrastinator.
(say it together, "Hi Tracie")

Last week I realized that I needed to learn how to do something new in order to complete a project I'm working on. Something that I had never done before.  I immediately went through the five steps of procrastination:

Step 1. Panic -I have to do this new thing and I don't know how.

Step 2. Research -Do a little googling, maybe even ask a couple of friends if they have any wisdom on the situation.

Step 3. Check Facebook and Twitter. < ----This is an incredibly helpful step!

Step 4. Look Back Over that Research -I've glanced at it, but now it is time to go back and read it all over again.

Step 5. Sit and stare at a blank screen for about half an hour.  Type my name. Erase my name. Glance at research again.  Type my name and save the document. Walk away.

Four days have passed and today I realized that I should get back to work on this project. My first instinct.....go through those steps again. Leaving me with another lost night, and no completed project.

Hi, my name is Tracie and I'm a procrastinator!

Not always though...
-You have a project and need help? I'm your girl!
-You've got a deadline? I'll get it to you a day early just in case!
-You want me to change some stuff and get it back to you? I'm right on it!

That doesn't sound like someone who procrastinates does it?  What is the difference?

The difference is all of those "You"s.  Those are the things that make me get it done on time.

Here's my secret to successful, secret procrastination! Only procrastinate when it is something that I need to get done for myself....something that I need to learn for me...something that could make my life easier....something that could make my life better.  Those are the things to put off and walk away from.

That process, repeating those steps over and over again, that is how I hold myself back.

There is some great news in this.  Procrastination recovery doesn't require a twelve step program.  There is just one step in this program.

Step One and Only -Stop working that procrastination list and DO the project!

Do you find that you are a secret procrastinator like I have been? Do you only put off those things that could help you, while making sure that you get everything done on time for everyone else?


  1. OH yeah I am a HUGE procrastinator.. and I always put others before mine.. like my dining room needs vaccumming but my wonderful bloggy friends need my comments lol.

  2. I'm the biggest procrainator I know. A lot of my procrastination involves how much I love taking naps lol.

  3. I procrastinate like it's going out of style, unless, of course, it's for someone else. When it's for someone else, I'm all over it.

  4. I'm procrastinating about admitting it, lol...

  5. Oh, I'm so guilty of this. In fact, if I can help someone instead of doing my own stuff, then that means I'm helping, right? Not procrastinating...

  6. I used to procrastinate on the laundry most of all. Especially putting it away. As a matter of fact... Yep, there's a basket waiting to be put away right now!

  7. "To think and think and think upon a thing, and never to accomplish it at all." (my prose from Beyond the Tears on the topic of procrastination)

    To get one thing done from start to finish is an accomplishment worth celebrating!

  8. I'm the same way....I remember so many times in college & grad school writing papers at 4 a.m. the day before they were due. omg. And I also have dreams that I'm back there doing scary!

  9. I'm the worst procrastinator! I didn't use to be like this. I blame my husband.