The More You Do – The Better You Feel

How To Learn to Overcome Procrastination and Live a Happier Life

Chapter One

remote, and detached from others, who he sees as capable “do”-ers. As a result of his procrastinating, he not only feels inadequate to others, but worse, he may worry that he’s becoming incapable of living any other way of life. Most of the time, he feels stuck, especially when faced with a complicated task, or one that he perceives of as being boring.

For example, there were many times in my own past when I felt so overwhelmed, I simply froze and could not take action. During one particularly difficult and prolonged occurrence of procrastination, I telephoned a local crisis hotline due to the shame I felt when I realized that I was stuck mid-way through the job of plastering and painting the studio apartment I had moved into a few weeks before. Even worse, I began to worry that I might not be able to complete the job.

My furniture left me little room to negotiate, and I had never before taken on such a complicated job. One wall was half-puttied, while another that had been brushed with primer almost glowed in the dark, and the apartment reeked of plaster dust. Bed sheets covered my belongings and just lifting the sheets momentarily, resulted in small clouds of dust rising up into the air. It was a terribly depressing scene.

Hoping to prompt me into action, the hotline’s volunteer asked, “How about this? Can you just picture how nice your apartment will look, and how good you’ll feel after you’ve finished painting it?”

“No,” was my simple reply. No other word had the same clarity and honesty to express the way I felt. The only thing I could picture in my mind’s eye was myself as an utterly inadequate adult, and I was certain that this unfinished nightmare of a job could be done better and faster by just about any other person. So convinced was I of my inadequacies, the only outcomes I could foresee were either an apartment that looked worse after the paint job, or one that looked mediocre at best. In my twisted logic, it simply made no sense to continue, and for long periods of time I did nothing except to watch television while I internally cursed myself for my past bouts of inactivity; doing nothing to alleviate my situation other than distracting myself from this self-imposed misery.

During that time, it never seemed to occur to me that this was my very first experience in painting an apartment, especially one that first