Why Do i Procrastinate

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  • M l zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    1 zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBAWhy Do I Procraslinate?

    DreCliOllS:zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA START:zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA Find out why peop le p ro crast inat e. W * t Ad m i t t hat p ro crast inat io n wo rks fo r yo u .

    ^ 4* M easu re t he sever i t y o f yo ur p rob lem .

    Learn t o recognize t he urge t o p ro crast inat e.

    END: Co m m i t t o m aking a chang e.

    ThezyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA re is a good chance that yo u are reading this book because yo u are unhappy w ith yourself. You have probably been procrastinat-

    ing on things for some time, have tried to change on your o w n, and

    have not been very successful. If you are like most procrastinators,

    you have probably made promises to yourself that the next time

    you are faced w ith a task yo u w i l l not w ait until the last minute

    to get it done. In fact, yo u have probably made that promise more

    lhan once and have had trouble keeping it. This book is for people

    who:

    D o n t understand w hy they procrastinate.

    Feel bad about do ing it.

    W ish that they d id n't.

    W ant to change, but d o nt kno w how.

    Procrastination is hard to change. It is no t something yo u can

    |u si decide to give up and then completely let it go. It is a w ell-

  • THE PROCRASTIN ATOR'S GU IDE TO GETTIN G THIN GS DON I zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    w o rn path in yo ur life, a habit tliai iszyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA SO automatli that It docii not require thought or planning. It is not li kc you open yo ur eyes In the

    mo rning and say, " I th ink I'm going to procrastinate today." Il is

    actually quite the opposite. You start yo urd ay saying thatzyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXW VUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA yOV w ill not take that path, fali into that habit, andzyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXW VUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA ye\ t r ea l l z i n g it y o u f i n d y o u r sel f t h er e a g a in . Pr o cr a st i n a t i o n m igh t be th a t sl igh t pause w h er e y o u i n t en d t o d o a task b u i h esi t a te an d t h en t u r n aw ay. M a y b e y o u rea ch fo r t h e p h on e t r a l i som con e a n d t h en ch an ge y o u r m i n d a n d t e l l y o u r sel f i h a i y o u w i l l d o i t l a t d O r y o u go t o t h e k i t ch en w i t h t h e i n t en t i o n o f w a sh i n g l h e d ish es, y o u see t h e m ess, a n d t h en y o u leave t h e r o o m l o d o so m et h i n g cise. Pr o cr a st i n a t i o n occu rs w h en y o u st a r t a t ask l i k f i p a y i n g y o u r b l is a n d t h en f in d y o u r se l f cl ea n i n g o u t a d ra w er i n st ea d . Il ' s a lso l hose t i m es w h en y o u f in d y o u r se l f sp en d i n g m ore t i m e g et t i n g ready t o d o a t a sk , l i k e st r a i g h t en i n g u p y o u r o f f i ce before y o u w o r k , t h a f t a ct u a l l y d o i n g t h e w o r k . I t is l i k e d r i v i n g d o w n t h e roacl t o w a r d y o u r d est i n a t i o n a n d t h en t u r n i n g o f f i n a n o t h er d i r ec t i o n at t h e l a st m o m en t .

    Pr o cr a st i n a t i o n is o u r co m f o r t zon e. It is w h ere w e feel t h e m o st a t ease. I t is f a m i l i a r . W e k n o w h o w t o d o i t . It doesn ' t ch a l -lenge us o r scare u s. Pr o cr a st i n a t i o n g ives us t em p o r a r y co m f o r t i n a w o r l d f u l l o f d em a n d s a n d u n cer t a i n t i es. I t is o u r rest st op o n t h e l o n g r o a d o f l i f e a n d r esp o n si b i l i t i es.

    Pr o cr a st i n a t i o n is a lso a n a l t er ed st a t e o f r ea l i t y . I t is o u r h a p p y p lace. I t a l l o w s us t o b el ieve t em p o r a r i l y t h a t w e have n o t h -i n g t o d o . I t pu sh es o u r t o - d o l i st so f a r o u t o f o u r m i n d s t h a t f o r a sh o r t w h i l e w e ca n a l m o st bel ieve t h e l i st does n o t ex i st . I t m akes us bel ieve w e deserve t o rest , r el a x, a n d t a k e i t easy. I t m akes us feel b o l d i n j u st i f y i n g o u r i n a c t i o n , i n a c t i v i t y , h esi t a t i o n , a n d a vo id -an ce.

    Pr o cr a st i n a t i o n is a r o a d b l o ck o n y o u r l i f e p a t h . I t slow s y o u r p rogress a n d som et im es t a kes y o u o f f cou rse a l t o g et h er .

    Pr o cr a st i n a t i o n is sed u ct i ve. I t a l l o w s y o u t o have a l i t t l e b i t o f j o y o r p leasu re o r r el i ef f r o m st ress. I t t a kes aw ay t h e t h i n g s y o u h a t e t o d o a n d rep laces t h em w i t h so m et h i n g b et t er . I t keeps y o u f r o m h a v i n g t o d ea l w i t h u n p l ea sa n t p eop le a n d d i f f i c u l t ch ores. I t

    W hy Do I Procrast ina t e?

    allows you to delay getting bad news. It gives yo u five more minutes

    in the comfort o f yo ur bed on a cold w inter mo rning.

    Procrastination is, however, only a disguise. It masks your true

    thoughts and feelings. It masquerades as laziness, but it is much more

    than that. O n the surface, procrastination looks like a comfortable,

    relaxing experience, but underneath it is fu ll o f guilt and self-loathing.

    Peacefulness is w hat we pretend to feel w hile we are procrastinating,

    yet it is anything but peaceful. W hile we are procrastinating we are

    w atching ourselves do it. We are criticiz ing the behavior. We are

    filled w i th guilt for p utting things off. We dread w hat w i l l happen

    if we w ait any longer to get started. We hate ourselves for do ing it

    and call ourselves names such as "lazy," "irresponsible," "uncaring,"

    "stupid ," and "worthless." We act like we are relieved not to have to

    deal w ith whatever we are try ing to ignore, but we are stressing on

    the inside, w o rry ing about w hat we w i l l eventually have to face. You

    have probably had experiences where yo u sat in fro nt o f the TV to

    w atch the news for a few moments before getting started on your

    chores but were distracted by thoughts o f w hat yo u needed to do

    next, so you missed w hat the announcer had to say. Or maybe for

    those extra few minutes you stayed in bed after turning o ff the alarm

    you lay there physically resting but mentally running through your

    list o f responsibilities for the day. During these times we know that

    by procrastinating we are probably making it worse. That makes us

    anxious and also robs us of the desire to take action.

    ThezyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA number one reason that we procrastinate is BECAUSE W E

    C A N . The majo rity o f the time things still get done and no real

    consequence is suffered. We get away w ith it w hen we are students

    by cramming at the last minute. We get away w i th it as adults

    by changing our minds and deciding not to do the task after ali.

    We get away w ith it at w o rk w hen another member of the team

    gets w o rried and picks up the slack. We get away w ith it at home

    because we can w ork around chores that are not finished or count

    On someone else do ing them for us. We may suffer consequences,

    but they are usually no t substantial. We get a late fee on our credit

    card bill or on our rent for no t sending a payment in on time. So

    what? We pay it and manage w itho ut the extra money.

  • THE PROCRASTIN ATOR'5 GU IDE TO GETTIN G IHIN GS IHIN I zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    We live in a w o rld o f extra chances, lhe IRS w illzyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA givezyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA u s an extension w hen our taxes are not done on lime. There are grace periods that allow us to delay w itho ut penalty. II we lose an oppor-tunity , we can o ften find another one. We get warnings llial we are

    approaching a deadline. We get alerts w hen we are aboul lo run oul

    o f time, or power in our batteries, or minutes on our cell phones.

    For many everyday things we can afford to put things o ff a little,

    take our time, sit on it for a w hile, or sleep on it. Our modern w orld

    is fu l l o f opportunities to procrastinate.

    Ho w many times have you w aited u nti l the last minute but

    still gotten things done? Ho w many extensions have you needed?

    Ho w many apologies have you given for being late? Ho w many

    late fees have you paid? You are probably aware of the many tasks

    you have consciously avoided because yo u just d id nt feel like

    do ing them, but how many more do you think you unconsciously

    avoided? Consider ali these times w hen either no thing bad hap-

    pened or the consequence was small and not a big deal. You were

    able to get away w ith it.

    The big question is w hy we w o uld w ant to give it up. W hy do

    we feel guilty about it? W hy do we pledge time and time again to

    change our ways? The reason may be that procrastination works

    only in the short run. It provides only temporary relief. In the long

    run, it does not get us where we w ant to go. We feel angry at our-

    selves for it when we step back and see the stress that it causes and

    how it interferes w ith our lives. If we could ho ld on to the big picture

    and see clearly where we w ant to go in life, we w o uld choose no t to

    procrastinate. If we could remember how much trouble it causes,

    we probably w o uld n't procrastinate the next time. The problem is

    that we are so used to using procrastination as our coping strategy

    that we do it automatically, w itho ut considering the big picture. In

    the moment, w hen faced w ith something unpleasant, we just w ant

    to detour around it, and so we avoid, delay, put off, forget about,

    and otherwise procrastinate on it.

    Procrastination is a common behavior. Some do it more than

    others. This book probably caught your attention because, just like

    me, yo u are not a blissful procrastinator. You w ant to change. That

    desire makes ali the difference.

    4

    W hy Do I Procrast ina t e? zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXW VUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    A Persona l N ot e

    Like everyone e/se, / don ' t l ike do ing t asks t ha t a re unp leasan t o r st ressfu l. There a re som e t h ings I w ou ld l ike t o avo id f o rever , bu t t ha t is usua lly no t possib le in m y w o r ld . I don ' t l ike t ha t f eeling o fhesit a t ion w here m y m ind does a qu ick t ug o fw a r w it h m y em o t ions: " You shou ld do t ha t now ." " N o , I don ' t w an t t o ! " I f eel m y gu t t igh t en ing and a p ressu re in m y chest . M y upb r ing ing leads m e t o f eel a sensa t ion o f gu il t w h ile t h is is happen ing . Som et im es t he gu il t f o r t h ink ing abou t pu t t ing som et h ing o f f is m ore unp leasan t t han t he d read o f do ing t he t ask. It 's bet t er i f l ju st do t he t h ing t ha t I am avo id ing and get i t over w it h . M ygoa l is t o st op t he t ug o fw a r and eit her pu t o f f a t ask in t en t iona lly , w it h good reason , and en joy m y m om en t o f rel ief o r just get up and t ake ca re o f t he t ask t ha t is nagg ing a t m e.

    W ha t / syour goa l? zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    Procrast inat ion Is a Way t o Cope

    If you are like most people, yo u probably associate procrastination

    w ith laziness. That is most likely because your parents or teachers

    to ld yo u to stop being lazy whenever they saw yo u put your w o rk

    aside to relax, have some fun, w atch TV, goof off, spend time on the

    computer, talk to your friends, or do anything else they thought

    was a waste o f time. I remember teachers saying things like "Never

    put o ff ti l l to mo rro w w hat yo u can do today" or "Do n't d illy -d ally "

    or "You have to get your w o rk done before you can go out and play."

    M y mo m had a few co lorful words in Spanish for laziness that I

    w o uld hear w hen I was parked in fro nt o f the television instead of

    doing my chores.

    W hat I have come to learn thro ugh my personal experience as

    a mo m, a psychologist, and a college professor is that there is much

    more to procrastination than laziness. Behind most procrastination

    is a task or activ ity that the person w o uld like to get out o f do ing if

    5

  • mi muzyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXW VUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA HASIIN AIOHS aaioi 10 ai um; HU N OS M IN I zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    izyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA ih i could Often Ti is someth ing that the per ion believes w i l l zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBAblzyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA l i . u . lzyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA i n i l i i .zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA unpleasant, or even painlul in some WY |ui1 lhe thoUght o l i i Jtirs uncomfortablr leclings like anxirly , dread, or angei Procrastination is a way o f shutting dow n i hose bad feelings. I n i his way, it is a type o f self-preservalion, a vvav lo eope.

    "51zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXW VUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA A Persona l N ot e I t each co llege st uden t s in t he Psycho logy Depa r t m en t a t t he U n iversit y o f Texas a t Ar l ing t on . It is a g rea t dea l o f f un f o r m e, and m y st uden t s seem t o en joy m y classes as w ell. I am one o f t hose p ro fesso rs, how ever , w ho m ake t heir st uden t s w r it e papers as pa r t o f t heir cou rse requ irem en t s, and I neveraccep t la t e papers un less t here is a ver if iab le m ed ica i em ergency. W hen I Fir st began t o do t h is, I go t lo t s oFca lls f rom st uden t s w it h in t he last f ew days befo re t he assignm en t w as due, ask ing abou t t he inst ruct ions f o r t he paper . Clea r ly t hey had w a it ed un t i l t he last m inu t e, and m ost o f t he t im e t heir papers ended up show ing a lack o fp repa ra t ion . M y st uden t s a re qu it e in t el l igen t , so t heirpoo rper fo rm ance w as no t due t o lack o f b ra inpow er . It w as due t o p rocrast ina t ing and runn ing ou t o f t im e.

    In subsequen t sem est ers I t ook t im e t o ask st uden t s ea r ly in t he sem est er i f t hey w ere having t roub le get t ing st a r t ed on t heir papers. M any had no t st a r t ed and had no idea how t o beg in . Severa l vo iced fea r t ha t t hey w ou ld " do i t w rong " and w ere st uck in t heir f ea r . Som e w ere busy having fun and t o ld t hem selves t ha t t hey had a l i t he t im e in t he w o r ld and w ere no t a t a l i w o r r ied abou t i t .

    Theyshou ld have been w or r ied . W ha t t heyshow ed m e is t ha t p rocrast ina t ion is no t laziness o r ir responsib i l i t y . It is t he w ay m y st uden t s coped w it h t heir f ea r o f m aking a m ist ake, t heir uncer t a in t y and lack o f self -eon f idence abou t t he t ask, and it w as a p roduct o f t heir f a lse belief t ha t t hey w r it e bet t er under p ressu re. Know ing t h is helps m e add ress t heir concerns befo re t he f ina l paper is due. W h ile w e t a lk abou t t he paper in class, I m ake t hem anxious because I f o rce

    6

    W hy Do I Procrast ina t e?

    t hem t o t h ink abou t w ha t t hey have been avo id ing . Fo r a w h ile, I t ake aw ay t heir ab i l i t y t o use p rocrast ina t ion as a w ay t o cope. In t he long run , how ever , t hey a re p leased t o have t heir quest ions answ ered and get t heir f ea rs o f f t heir chest .

    Read through Changing Directions 1 to determine w hether

    you are using procrastination as a coping strategy. zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    *DzyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA Chang ing Di rect io ns 1 zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBAAre You Using Procrastination as a Way to Cope?

    Read each question and put a check next to the ones to w hich

    yo u w o uld answer yes.

    If you feel uncertain, w i l l you postpone taking action or

    making a decision?

    W hen you are mentally or physically tired , do you tell

    yourself you w i l l do it later?

    If you dread having to face a problem or a d ifficult per-

    son, w i l l yo u avoid it for as long as yo u can?

    If you are nervous about having to do something dif-

    ficult, w i l l you delay?

    If you are angry about being forced to do something you

    d o nt w ant to do , w i l l you procrastinate?

    If you are afraid you are going to make a mistake or mess

    things up, do yo u w ait too long to start a task?

    If you have to face a person w ho is unpleasant, w i l l you

    make an excuse to put it off?

    If yo u answered yes to any of these questions, you are using

    procrastination as a way to cope.

    7

  • THE PROCRASTIN ATORS GU IDE TO GETTIN G THIN GS DON E zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    How Bad Is It ? zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    Procrastination is a common behavior, and doing it once in a w hile

    doesn't usually cause problems. Mo st o f the time you are the only

    person w ho suffers. A t least that is w hat you tell yourself. Your

    first step tow ard overcoming procrastination is to be honest w ith

    yourself about how o ften it happens and how much trouble it is

    causing yo u. Try Changing Directions 2. See if you really are the

    world 's worst procrastinator or just a normal everyday procrastina-

    tor. zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    *DzyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA Chang ing Di rect io nszyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA 2 zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBAProcrastination Quiz

    For each item, rate the extent to w hich the problems w ith pro-

    crastination oceur in your personal life, at school, at w o rk, and

    at home. Be honest w ith yourself. For each item, indicate how

    o ften it oceurs. Use the fo llo w ing scale.

    0zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA = It never happens.

    1 = It happens sometimes.

    2 = It happens fairly often.

    3 = It happens a lot more often than I would like.

    A d d up your score for each subscale. Think about w hether

    the behaviors in each subscale are more of a problem at w ork,

    in your home life, at school, in your relationships w ith others,

    or just in personal matters that affect yo u and not necessarily

    other people. Check the domain at the bo tto m of the subscale

    that applies most. It is O K to pick more than one.

    You w i l l tally up the subscales at the end of the quiz to

    determine the severity o f your problem w ith procrastination.

    8

    W hy Do I Procrast ina t e?

    Subscale 1

    How often does this happen?

    1. I put things off , and they don't get done. 2. While I procrast inate, I st ill keep thinking about

    what I should be doing. 3. Other people are on my case for procrast inat ing. 4. My procrast inat ion makes me late for lots of things.

    5. I make excuses for not get t ing started. SUBSCALE 1

    Where do you have the most t rouble w it h this? K) ( ) Work ( ) Home ( ) School ( ) Relat ionship ( ) Self

    Subscale 2

    How often does this happen?

    6. 1 avoid st ressful situat ions and tasks.

    7. When a task stresses me out , 1 wait unt il the last minute to do i t .

    8. 1 ignore unpleasant tasks unt il the last minute.

    9. 1 avoid bad news.

    10. I avoid informat ion I don't really want to hear. SUBSCALE 2

    Where do you have the most t rouble w it h this? K) ( ) Work ( ) Home ( ) School ( ) Relat ionship ( ) Self

    Subscale 3

    How often does this happen?

    11. I t ell myself I have plenty of t ime even when t haf s not t rue.

    I rom The Procrast ina t o r 's Gu ide t o Get t ing Th ings Done by M nica Ramirez Basco . Copyright 2010 by The Guilford Press.

    9

  • THE PROCRASTIN ATORS GU IDE TO GETTIN G THIN GS DON E zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    12. I have t rouble get t ing organized.

    13. I underest imate how long it w ill take to get things done.

    14.zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA I overest imate how much t ime I have available to get things done.

    15. I put of f tasks because I can't concent rate.

    SUBSCALE 3

    Where do you have the most t rouble w it h this?zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA K) ( )Work ( )Home ( ) School ( ) Relat ionship ( ) Self

    Subscale 4

    How often does this happen?

    16. I hesitate because I am afraid of making a mistake or failing.

    17. I avoid taking aet ions t hat others might not like. 18. I avoid things t hat I am unsure about .

    19. My self-doubt and uncertainty make me postpone get t ing started on dif f icult tasks.

    20. I am not always sure what decision to make, so I put it o f f as long as possible.

    SUBSCALE 4 Where do you have the most t rouble w it h this? ( ) ( )W or k ( )Hom e ( ) Schoo l ( ) Relat ionshi p ( ) Sel f

    Subscal e 5

    Ho w o f t e n doe s t h i s happen ?

    21 . I hat e bein g t ol d wha t t o do .

    22 . I int ent ionall y procrast inat e whe n other s t el l m e wha t t o do .

    23 . I sho w m y displeasur e by st alling . zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBAFrom The Procrast ina is Gu ide t o Get t ing Th ings Done by M nica Ramirez Basco Copyright 2010 by The Guilford Press.

    10

    W hy Do I Procrast ina t e?

    24 . 1 agre e t o do thing s fo r other s t ha t 1 late r regret .

    25 . It ' s har d fo r m e t o sa y no t o people . SUBSCALE 5

    Wher e do yo u hav e th e mos t t roubl e w i t h this ? K) ( ) Wor k ( ) Hom e ( ) Schoo l ( ) Relat ionshi p ( ) Sel f

    Subscale 6

    How often does this happen?

    26 . 1 tak e o n mor e tha n 1 ca n handle .

    27 . I f 1 can' t do somethin g perfect ly , 1 w on' t do i t a t ali .

    28 . 1 ge t overwhelme d by t o o muc h t o do .

    29 . 1 eithe r giv e m y al i o r pu t t hing s o f f altogether .

    30 . 1 wor k so har d at t ime s t ha t 1 wea r mysel f out .

    SUBSCALE 6

    Wher e do yo u hav e th e mos t t roubl e w it h this ? K) ( ) Wor k ( ) Hom e ( ) Schoo l ( ) Relat ionshi p ( ) Sel f

    Subscal e 7

    Ho w o f t e n doe s t h i s happen ?

    31 . I pla y instea d o f work .

    32 . Whe n I don' t fee l mot ivat ed , I don' t tak e act ion .

    33 . It ' s har d fo r m e t o sto p doin g somethin g fu n o r relaxing an d ge t bac k t o tasks .

    34. I avoi d unpleasan t task s unt i l someon e doe s them

    fo r me .

    35 . I hav e no rea l excus e fo r procrast inat ing . SUBSCALE 7

    Wher e do yo u hav e th e mos t t roubl e w i t h this ? K) ( ) Wor k ( ) Hom e ( ) Schoo l ( ) Relat ionshi p ( ) Sel f

    From The Procrast ina is Gu ide t o Get t ing Th ings Done by M nica Ramirez Basco . Copyright 2010 by The Guilford Press.

    11

  • THE PROCRASTIN ATORS GU IDE TO GETTIN G THIN GS DON E zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    A d d up your subscale scores in the fo llo w ing table. Next to

    each subscale is a description o f the type of procrastinator you

    might be. Read on to learn more about these subtypes. zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    Subscale 1-General Characterist ics Subscale 2-Avoidant Type Subscale 3Disorganized Type Subscale 4-Self -Doubt ing Type Subscale 5Interpersonal Type Subscale 6-AII-or -Not hing Type Subscale 7Pleasure-Seeking Type zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    GRAND TOTAL

    How Bad Is It? 0 t o 3 5 = Normal. Don' t w or r y abou t i t . Yo u don' t

    procrast inat e enoug h f o r i t t o be a problem .

    3 6 t o 6 0 = M ild. Yo u st i l l manag e t o ge t t hing s done , bu t t h e st res s is get t in g t o you . Yo u kno w yo u coul d d o so muc h bet t e r i f yo u didn' t procrast inat e .

    61 t o 70 =zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA M od er at e. You r procrast inat io n is a problem . No t onl y d o yo u kno w t ha t yo u procrast inat e , bu t t h e peopl e w h o kno w yo u als o kno w yo u ar e a procrast inat or . Thi s is embarrassin g fo r you .

    71 t o 10 5 = Severe. It ' s t im e t o mak e som e seriou s changes.

    W hat Type of Procrast inat or Are You?

    There are six types of procrastinators, each w ith a unique reason

    for p utting things off. Each of the Procrastination Quiz subscales

    relates to a d ifferent type. Items 1 through 5 are general problems zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXW VUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA12

    W hy Do I Procrast ina t e?

    w ith procrastination that are common to ali types o f procrastina-

    tors such as Bob. Bob knows he puts things o ff when he sho uld nt,

    and he feels guilty about it. W hen he was married , his w ife got on

    his case about it, especially when his delays made them bo th late

    for appointments.

    Items 6 through 10 are rated highly by avoiders. Avoiders

    cope w ith stress and unpleasantness by p utting things o ff as long

    as possible. Do nna has to tell her grandmother that she is get-

    ting a divorce. Donna knows her grandmother w i l l not approve

    of this because no one in her family has ever been divorced. The

    conversation is going to be very stressful, so Do nna keeps p utting

    it o ff.

    Items 11 to 15 are typ ically checked by the disorganized type

    of procrastinator. People in this group underestimate how long

    tasks can take and overestimate how much time they have avail-

    able. They have trouble setting priorities w hen there is too much

    to do. Freddie, for example, wastes time on small tasks as a way

    of avo iding bigger ones; he w i l l , for example, reorganize his CDs

    instead of cleaning his ro o m.

    Items 16 through 20 pertain to procrastinators w ho are self-

    doubters. They hesitate to take action because they lack confidence

    in their abilities. They think they w i l l make a mistake or fail.

    A rthur, for example, isn't sure how to put together the end-of-year

    budget summary for his procrastination support group. He puts o ff

    do ing it because he is afraid it w on't be right.

    Items 21 through 25 pertain to the interpersonal type of pro -

    crastinator. These people procrastinate intentio nally as a way o f

    making a po int. For example, Carla hates being to ld w hat to do,

    especially by someone at w o rk w ho is not her boss. She always gets

    things done on time, but she stalls in getting started just to make

    people nervous that the job w on't get done.

    Items 26 to 30 relate to all-o r-no thing procrastination. These

    are people w ho take on too much and w ork at fu ll speed until they

    run out o f steam. They can be binge workers w ho try to do it ali

    until they get overwhelmed and shut do w n altogether. Oliv ia is an

    example of an all-o r-no thing procrastinator. She agrees to help out zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXWVUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA

    on too many things and then gets completely overwhelmed by how zyxwvutsrqponmlkjihgfedcbaZYXW VUTSRQPONMLKJIHGFEDCBA13

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