News from Jude Bijou and Attitude Reconstruction™      


Joy, Love, and Peace in 2020

Attitiude Reconstruction  

March 2020                                                   Procrastination

Photo by Shaun Heffernan

Jude Bijou

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Jude Bijou MA MFT is a respected psychotherapist, professional educator, and workshop leader. Her multi award- winning book is a practical and spiritual handbook to help you create the life you desire.  read more 

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"I don't understand it--no matter how much I drink coffee, play on my phone, refresh my e-mail, look up things online, go to the kitchen for snacks, message my friends, scroll through Twitter, and play with the cat, I still can't get any writing done."



Hello Friends,

One of the casualties of social distancing is that the "How to Communicate" class that was supposed to be on March 21 is cancelled. I'm hoping they will reschedule it once this situation is brought under control.

My long-time friend, Janet, suggested that fear would be a great topic for this newsletter. Unfortunately, I had already mostly completed this issue on procrastination. So, I'll briefly review how to deal with all the anxiety and obsessiveness around the coronavirus. Your best tools are to shiver and shake when you find yourself perseverating about catching the germs in order to move the fear from your body. (Here's a link demonstrating how to move the fear energy out of your body.)

And the second tool is to combat your wild doom and gloom thoughts by lovingly but persistently repeating such expressions as "I'll do what I can, and the rest is out of my hands." or "Stay specific. Be here now." (Projecting into the future only increases feelings of fear.) or "I'll handle the future in the future."

Another tool you can use is to follow your intuition. That means ask, then listen within, about whether it makes sense to partake in a given activity. If you get a "no," then even if you'd love to do something, you're going to feel calmer if you obey what you know is best.

Before I describe how to deal with procrastination, I'll list some videos and articles I've come across in the last month.


Sanity: The Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Ardern, giving an update about her accomplishments during her two years in office.

If you found that inspiring, Jacinda invited Steven Colbert to New Zealand and here is what he found.

Guaranteed to put a smile on your face: Serena Williams' daughter, Olympia, gives her dad a manicure.

Tina Fey and Amy Pouler play a game called " True Confessions."

Here is a lifetime collection of bird photographs, by Shaun Heffernan, put to music. It's both so relaxing and so awe-inspiring. This is a great video by a special human being who left us way too soon.


31 folks asked master photoshopper, James Fridman, to futz their photos. Here are the results. Some made me laugh out loud!

The BakeKing definitely has too much time of his hands.

Here's an article that explains how a simple EEG brain scan can tell if antidepressant drugs will work for you.

This isn't fair. Rich folks get more healthy and more years.

Iconic stories of childhood memories.

Almost everyone procrastinates. We usually do it to avoid a task that's unpleasant or daunting. Some things are broad and require lots of time and effort, and may involve changing long-held behaviors or beliefs. Others are very specific one-time tasks. When procrastinating starts to interfere with our quality of life by causing us to feel worried, fearful, lazy, or irresponsible, then it's time to do something to break the grip our mind has over us .
Ultimately, this "bad attitude" of procrastination stems back to unexpressed sadness, anger, and fear. Perhaps you're intimidated by all the time and sacrifice (fear). Or you're resentful about having to do this when you think it's not necessary (anger). Or you're bummed that you are trashing yourself so heavily for being unmotivated (sadness).  Regardless, they are just emotions within you, and you don't need to let them be the captain of your ship.
How to Deal with Your Tendency to Put Things Off

Here are seven steps to get out of the quicksand of procrastination and reap numerous benefits, which include improved productivity, enhanced mood, less stress, better relationships, a sense of accomplishment, and feeling successful in life.

1. Identify the challenge.
Start by writing down the specific task you've been putting off. It could be having a difficult conversation with a family member, dealing with a bad habit, or finally scheduling that appointment you've been avoiding. Writing down the task helps you focus on the job at hand.
2. Pinpoint and deal with your emotions.
What's preventing you from diving in to this task? It's typically one or more of three core emotions. Identifying what's behind your dragging your heels for what it truly is--an emotional reaction-- cuts to the root of this desire to put off the inevitable.
It's helpful to know that emotions--sadness, anger, and fear--are just pure energy in your body. Look at the word "emotion." It's energy (e) in motion. Take some time in private to express those emotions constructively. By crying to express sadness, punching or yelling into a pillow or stomping around to release the anger, or doing exaggerated shivering for the fear. You need to give yourself permission to express the emotion. The energy dissipates and you won't feel stuck. It's like the letting steam out of a pressure cooker.

Strategies 3 to 5
3. Get your head on straight.
There are two steps to this process. First, start by getting clear on your goal for the task at hand. Good planning is the foundation of success for most any project. It's helpful to write it down so you have it for ready reference. For example, "I want to get this off my plate." Or "I feel clearer when I exercise regularly." Having a clear and precise idea of your goal will keep you oriented and help you to stay motivated.
Once the goal is clear, identify sabotaging thoughts that are hanging in the wings, ready to derail you in a weak moment. Then come up with a couple of truths to contradict them. For example if you continually tell yourself "I'll never be able to learn all this," you might say to yourself, "I can do this" or "If others can learn it, so can I". That's a plain and a simple truth. To neutralize your frustration at having to do this task, you might say, "I'm doing this for me."
4. Do the planning -- break your goal into a series of small, doable steps.
You've envisioned the task, dealt with what's been holding you back, and fixed your destructive thinking. Completing the job requires figuring out a reasonable step-by-step game plan and deciding when you'll begin. Write your plan down.
Once you have an outline, step back and imagine obstacles that are likely to pop up along the way. For every scenario, have a tactic ready to help you stick to your plan. You may also want to find someone to support your efforts and with whom you can check in on a regular basis.
5. Just do it -- gulp and leap.
With all this preparation, it's time to tackle the task you've put off. Before you do, acknowledge your emotions--whether it's anger, fear, or sadness. Take just a minute or two and release the pent-up emotion in a physical and constructive way. Without the emotional energy dragging you down, you'll feel prepared to take the leap and be amazed how easy it is as you just focus on one step at a time.

The Last Two Tips for Dealing with Procrastination
6. Battle resistance.
As you take action, you're likely to meet with resistance in the form of excuses, bad moods, and discouragement. Meet resistance with tenacity and stubbornness, and continue to deal with any emotions that surface. At this point in the process it's important to repeat your truths and remember your goal. Say them over and over until they're set in your mind. "I can do this. I'll feel better when I handle this." Anytime you are tempted to procrastinate, refocus on the goal.
7. Appreciate your efforts and accomplishments.
Getting through a daunting task is incredibly satisfying. Praise each small accomplishment along the way. You'll feel proud and virtuous when you get the task off your plate. Doing what you're avoiding will simplify your life. You'll feel more energetic. You'll sleep better at night.

Hey Jude,

I've postponed taking my contractor's licensing exam for over a
year. How can I finally take the plunge?

If putting things off is a longstanding problem, it can be helpful
to explore the roots of your struggle with time, exams, and deadlines.
Shiver out the fear, give yourself permission for a big cry, or
pound out your frustration. Then power on something along the
lines of "I 'll give it my best shot," or " If I don't pass my exam, I'll
try again in the summer."

Come up with a reasonable schedule based on how much time
you need to prepare, when the exam is, and other responsibilities.
List different topics that need to be studied, keep the work blocks
short so you don't burnout. (You can always study extra if you so
choose.) Give yourself plenty of praise each time you meet your
daily goal. Check in with a friend or, better yet, someone else who
is taking the same test to get a boost of support.

If you have any feedback, suggestions, or comments, I enjoy hearing from you. Write me at:

I'm wishing you and yours plenty of love, joy, peace, and accomplishments.