The Worrier Procrastinator
The "what if" catastrophes. Fear of making mistakes. That was me – starting a business. What are you crazy- Karen you starting a business!
They avoid or delay doing things. They feel safe with familiar, predictable, and dependable routines. They get insecure when they have a new challenge. Worrier procrastinators are so alert to the negative possibilities of an unknown situation and are so blind to the positive ones they tend to FREEZE, instead of moving forward.
They fear decisions, obsess about everything, what if the weather is terrible, the car brakes, if I get too busy, thus they don't act. Because they don't respond, they are missing out on pleasure or self- advancement. They avoid things that are too much work or difficult and label themselves LAZY or low energy. When, in fact, it is making the decision and dealing with the outcome. FEAR of the unknown is what I call it. I am so convinced the result is going not what I want, I don't act and make the call to get the facts to help me make the decision.
Let's face it; worrying is exhausting. The last several months with the Corvid-19 and all the media, photographs, hearing there is no cure, and constant rhetoric from our politicians has been overwhelming. I had to finally stop watching, listening, looking for only good stories, less doom, and gloom, too much information overload. Constant worry made me a walking zombie, no sleep, unable to eat, and worried about family members on the front line.
Once I stopped worrying, I could move forward and check out unemployment for the first time in my life. I also applied for some of the SBA programs to help small businesses. I set up a routine to get me up every day, getting dressed and hitting the phones at 9 A.M. Calling my elderly customers and trying to reassure them. I could not move forward until I let go of the UNKNOWN.
As a worried procrastinator, they need constant reassurance. I did. I had to change the "stuck at home" to "safe at home." I needed to know it was going to be okay, but no one knows what is going to happen. But I am still breathing, eating, and laughing. Being scared all time is no life.
What did I learn in this chapter is to stop/avoid dwelling on the "What-if's" wait until you can assess the task. Set no expectations. Suppose you are cleaning the garage, set up (5) 3-hour sessions. If it only takes (3) 3 hour sessions great. If you find it on your 5th session, there is still more to be done and try to put more time aside. Be sure to take pictures of every organizing session, so you can see how much you have done. Are piles going down, are things going out the door as donations or trash. Can you walk in the garage yet? Don't get caught up on how long it took, step back, and realize you did it.
Another beautiful thing I learned is that not "making a decision" is a decision. Waiting or putting off until you can make the right decision. Maybe you not interested in clean out the garage for fear of unknown. Like what to do with all the stuff? Toss it, donate it, or keep it? If that seems overwhelming? What happens if your spouse decides to clean the garage without you, how will that make you feel? Worried – will they toss your treasures. Forcing you to ask, why do we have to do it now. I am not ready to make decisions. Can it wait, ask yourself why you don't want to get started? What are your stumbling blocks?
Remember, you are the worrier. Your spouse may not worry about anything and just want to clean out the garage before they have to go back to work, or it too humid out, or before your construction starts, or they maybe they just hate the mess.
Dr. Linda talks about Dr. Seuss, ' "Oh, the Places You'll Go." It wonderfully describes and depicts the problems worrier procrastinators confront, as well as the spirit, is necessary to overcome those problems: and the rhyming language an easy-and delightful-to recall. She is so right!
I hope you are learning about yourself. I am.