I often have clients come to me and say that they struggle with procrastination. They typically say the same things. They wish they could get going or moving on a particular thing, but just don’t have the motivation. They feel like they are stuck with no options.

Here is a short exert from Wikipedia: “In psychology, procrastination refers to the act of replacing high-priority actions with tasks of lower priority, or doing something from which one derives enjoyment, and thus putting off important tasks to a later time….”


So why is it that people procrastinate? In NLP we are not so interested in why people do what they do. We are however determined to help our clients stop doing a certain behaviour, or lack of behaviour in the case of procrastination. Typically our clients come to us for life coaching or business coaching when they want to stop procrastinating and start taking action.

How do you stop procrastinating?

There are a number of techniques to help people overcome procrastination, including hypnosis, but most often we use a NLP technique called chaining anchors. The current stuck state of procrastination is quite far removed from the desired state of being motivated. So we need to find some intermediate states that will help the client to move from being stuck to being motivated.

In basic terms what we do, is the following:
1. Get in rapport.
2. Identify the undesirable present state (E.G.: Procrastination), and decide on the positive/resource end state (E.G.: Motivation.)
3. Design the chain: Decide on what intermediate states are needed to lead to the end state. (EG: “You’re procrastinating, what gets you off that state?”)
4. Chain each state together firing #1 and when #1 is at its peak add #2, and then release #1. When #2 comes to the peak, add #3, then release #2. Add #4, etc. in the same way. (This is NOT a collapse because the two states do not peak at the same time.)
5. Test: Fire present state anchor. Client should end up in final state.
6. Ask the client, “Now how do you feel about __________.” EG: How do you feel about procrastination?
7. Future Pace: “Can you think of a time in the future which if it had happened in the past you would have _______________ (EG: Procrastinated) and tell me what happens instead?”

There are a few additional steps which are not mentioned here, but this is the basic idea. We teach the complete intervention in our life coaching courses and NLP training. If you would like to know more you can also read this article about overcoming procrastination.

What is the next step to get rid of procrastination?

If you feel stuck or seem to procrastinate, contact us or speak to a qualified NLP practitioner to help you overcome these issues. It is a very simple process and yet has had a profound effect on my clients and many others lives when they got rid of their procrastination. You also may wish to speak to us about a personal breakthrough session if you have any other presenting problems that you would like to clear up.

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  1. […] Procrastination is a failure to take action. Postponing doing tasks and sometimes not doing them at all. Start by making a list of the most important tasks that need to be completed according to priority. Complete one task at a time and don’t stop until the task has been completed in full. Once you have completed the task, cross it off your list and move on to the next item. Just do it without over thinking or making excuses why it cannot be done. Soon you will find yourself task driven. A life coach can do a simple technique called chaining anchors to help you move off procrastination. […]

  2. […] even help to get you motivated and get going. Personally that would not be my choice to get rid of procrastination. Many people also say that they wish they could stop smoking, but say they smoke when they get […]

  3. […] going to anchor each state on a separate knuckle and stack the anchor at least 5 times. So example, procrastination 5 times, boredom 5 times, extreme excitement 5 times and motivation 5 […]

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