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The Now Habit by Neil Fiore.  1½ thumbs up.

Bottom line: I plan to implement this method and can’t wait to get started!

I can see why this is one of the seminal works in the psychology/self-help/procrastination arena.  Dr. Fiore has focused his career on researching and treating procrastination, and in this book he distills all the then-current theory plus his experiences with thousands of patients into one how-to book for the lay reader.  It is interesting, authoritative, and rings true.  His characterization of procrastination as a reaction to anxiety/resentment associated with work explains why deadlines and threats rarely work on us procrastinators – they just amp up the anxiety.  The book makes a lot of sense, and made me a believer that Fiore’s method will work for me.

My only complaint with the book is that it is almost all prose.  There are very few tables, diagrams or step-by-step instructions.  I got to the end of the book and thought: “Great!  Now what do I DO?”  I had to go through again and make my own point-form notes to follow.

When Fiore described the worker who never takes time to enjoy personal pursuits and yet wastes hours per day goofing off at his desk, I had to look behind me for the hidden camera!  Apparently, this is a well-trodden path.  The urge to goof-off at work is, he proposes, rooted in the belief that I don’t get enough “me time” because work is taking over my life. (Self-fulfilling prophecy: as my productivity dropped, I started working weekends and cancelling vacations.)  If I would only schedule some guilt-free play into my week, then that feeling would fade away along with the associated anxiety and resentment.

It’s not as simple as that, but this was the big light-bulb moment for me.  Methods for defeating the other primary causes of procrastination are also presented.  I now feel like I have a whole box of tools at the ready for tweaking the procrastination out of my work habits, bit by bit.  I’m looking forward to applying them, starting Monday.

-Johnny 0.


One Comment

  1. “Starting Monday.” Heh. Classic.

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