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Author Biography: Rita Emmett's first book, The Procrastinator's Handbook, has sold over 100,00 copies. Now, beleaguered parents can rejoice! Rita has turned her expert attention to children's procrastination in her new book, The Procrastinating Child (October 2002). Her many credentials include teaching parenting seminars for 18 years at a Family Service counseling agency in the Chicago area. Additionally, she is licensed to teach Parent Effectiveness Training and is certified for Systematic Training for Effectiveness Training. A media natural, Rita has made over 100 radio and TV appearances, including The Today Show where she was interviewed by Katie Couric. She has also written articles for Family Circle, The National Enquirer, Bottom Line Personal, as well as other magazines and newspapers. For twenty years Rita has been a professional speaker who has presented training seminars on both Conquering Procrastination and Time Management. Born the world's greatest procrastinator, she learned how to beat putting-off behavior, and is now a "Recovering Procrastinator." Her personal mastery of the art of doing it now led her to develop talks and seminars to help others and she has taught thousands of people the secrets to conquer procrastination. Among her many clients are: American Lung Association, AT&T, Bartlett Learning Center, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Blue Cross Blue Shield, U.S. Department of the NAVY, U.S. Department of Commerce & Community Affairs, Goodwill Industries, Lucent Technologies, National Kidney Foundation, and UPS. She also presented a seminar for booksellers at BookExpo America, 2000. Rita Emmett earned her MS in Adult Education from National Louis University and a BA in English and Psychology from Northeastern Illinois University. She is a member of The National Speakers Association, Professional Speakers of Illinois, American Society of Training and Development, Professional Communicators' Roundtable, and Off Campus Writers' Workshop.
The first step is, if you are in charge of the house rules or of any rules that could impact this child’s life, establish rules now that support doing chores and tasks right away, and not putting them off.
There actually was a time I was a perfect parent and I knew all the answers -- then, the first baby came along and suddenly I realized I didn’t even know what the questions were.
Choose your battles.
When you don’t have enough room for all your stuff, you don’t need more room, you need less stuff.
Most likely your child does not enjoy being a procrastinator. It’s up to you to help him or her find a different way of doing things.
Often parents are working to solve problems without knowing what the real problem is.
Children can learn to abide by rules as long as they believe they are real.
When children hate doing something because it’s a miserable job, they have the uncanny ability to spread that misery around to everyone within earshot.
Do the worst first.
Sometimes children procrastinate simply because they really don’t know how to do what they are supposed to be doing.
Often parents presume that children know how to do something because you showed them how to do it once or twice.
Children often think that many aspects of their lives are out of their control, especially their procrastination.
Procrastination carries with it a great deal of shame.
As your children develop this habit of “work hard then reward yourself”, they are learning the secret of a balanced life that many adults have never mastered.
Perfectionism and procrastination go hand in hand; perfectionism is often what keeps kids from starting a project. “Everything has to be perfectly in place before I can begin.”
Have you lived long enough to know that many of the biggest lessons that you’ve learned in life have come from making mistakes?
One of the more subtle causes of procrastination is fear that can lurk in our subconscious and has the power to immobilize us.
Sadly, adults as well as children often put off doing things because they fear that success will burden them with more responsibility than they can handle.
Adults seldom have a clue as to how stressed children, even as young as preschoolers, can feel when they spend their days rushing from activity to activity.
Tips to Share With The Child
When you have so much to do,
You think you can’t get through it,
Break it into little chunks,
Then pick one out and do it.
Take the STING out of feeling overwhelmed
Select one task you’ve been putting off
Time yourself. Give the task one full hour
Ignore everything else. Focus on doing just this one task
No breaks allowed
Give yourself a reward when the job is done
Let HONEY sweeten those crummy jobs you hate to do
How can you make it less miserable?
Only focus on how you’ll feel afterwards, NOT how you’ll feel doing the job
Name a great reward ahead of time
Expect to do crummy jobs in your life. Everyone has to do them sometimes.
Yell out, “I did the crummy job first. Now I’m free!”
This HIVE will help conquer that fear that is causing you to procrastinate
Have a conversation; talking about a fear helps move it from the subconscious to the conscious mind, and reduces its power over you.
Identify the fear; give it a name.
View it simply as a feeling; if you procrastinate because you feel scared, go ahead and do it scared.
Exaggerate the fear; balloon it; what’s the worst that could happen?
Let the Clutter BUGS help you
Break now the habit of “Save, collect and keep.”
Undertake some action – don’t leave things in a heap.
Get rid of stuff that clutters up your brain.
Stop bringing in more clutter that starts it all again.
Clear Out Paper Clutter in a FLASH
Feed your wastebasket.
Let go of papers (& old magazines, books and notebooks) that you don’t need.
Act on it NOW – take it to where or to whom it belongs.
Sit and Sort; Stand & Deliver.
Handle each piece of paper only once.
Tips to Share With Your Child to Help Clear That BUSY Calendar
Be selective; prioritize your activities; choose your battles.
Use a calendar to block out “Catch up days.”
Set limits; pause, breathe, slow down.
Yes can get you in trouble; learn to say no.