How to Prevent Your Child From Becoming a Procrastinator


How to Prevent Your Child From Becoming a Procrastinator
Procrastination has its roots in childhood. Help your child nip this bad habit before it's too late.
  •  Problem-solve with your child and let her tell you what she would like to do.
  •  If you have a toddler and are teaching your little one how to do certain chores like putting his toys away, you might make a game of picking up the toys.
  •  When children are older you can discuss the problem. Certain responsibilities are non-negotiable. Explain that your son must do his homework, but let him decide whether he will do it before or after dinner.
  •  Set a timer and let your child do something she enjoys until the timer goes off and she must finish a chore or complete a job. Trust your children to tell you what they think and how they feel.  Respect their ability to help find solutions.


Turn your monarchy into a democracy and give your child a vote. When children are older have a family meeting and list the responsibilities and tasks that the adults think are appropriate. Let your youngster help with the list.

Make a chart with three columns. Hang the chart up where everyone has access to it. Column 1 is the list of tasks. Column 2 denotes when or how often each item is to be completed. Column 3 lists a logical consequence that will occur if that particular assignment is not done. A logical consequence is not the same as a punishment. With logical consequences the so-called "punishment" must fit the "crime."


For example: when my son was in Junior High School, one of his chores was to make his bed and put his dirty clothes into the hamper each day. When he shirked his responsibility he was fined $2 from his weekly allowance to help pay for the extra work our house cleaner would have to do when cleaning his room. Allow your son or daughter to help decide what a fair and reasonable consequence should be. Then, if you have to impose it, they will accept it more easily.

Criticism and punishment lead to fear of a harsh authority, which in turn causes the child to build up resentment and behave rebelliously toward authority figures in general. The outcome is procrastination. Use the Stop, Look and Listen Plan now and prevent your child from developing a lifelong habit that will lead to unhappiness and unpleasant consequences in the future. Read more about how to deal with procrastination in my book, Five Simple Steps to Emotional Healing.

Discuss your procrastination or parenting problems in a free phone consult with Gloria.

Make sure that you download your FREE copy of Gloria’s eBook, Creating Happiness.

This article was originally published at . Reprinted with permission.
Article contributed by

Gloria Arenson

Marriage and Family Therapist

Gloria Arenson is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, Diplomate in Comprehensive Energy Psychology and author of 7 books. She is passionate about helping people help themselves to be free of negative emotions and compulsive behaviors.

Location: Santa Barbara, CA
Credentials: DCEP, EFT-ADV, MFT, MS
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