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I constantly late and I might lose my job because of it?

Tardiness has been the thorn in my side since childhood. I'm ridiculously late for everything, even things that I enjoy - dates, dinner, doctor's appointments, movies, ... & ESPECIALLY work. My boss is fed up & my job (which I otherwise excel at) is in jeopardy.

I am a talented adult with a bright career & no reason to be 15-45 min late to work every day. I'm a big girl now! I don't hate my job or boss or coworkers, nor do I suffer from a debilitating physical condition or deep-seated fear of driving which prevents me from being anywhere on time. I just can't get my *ss out of bed - I snooze &/or zone out until there's no time left to get ready. Or I keep forgetting things & having to go back in the house.

Easy answer - DON'T hit the snooze button. Go to bed earlier. Wake up earlier. Start getting ready earlier. Leave earlier. Don't zone out & stare off into space. Lay everything out the night before. All very logical & obvious solutions. Well, I've tried them all, & then some.

I moved closer to work (within 10 min.). Bought the loudest dual-alarm, battery-backup clock on the market (I stood there for over an hour & tested each & every one on the shelf to make sure it was loud enough to wake me). Set my alarm across the room, so I have to get up to turn it off. Kept a minutely detailed journal of everything I do in the morning to get ready, documenting what time it is at each step. Eliminated car problems by buying. Randomly reset all the clocks in my house 2-25 min. fast. My boss even moved my start time back by 30 minutes.

Usually I have modest success for a few days, but I always slip back into my old habits. Why doesn't anything work??? I WANT to change!!! But I feel so helpless.

Please help me!!

Seeking Relief

Docpotter's Reply:

Hi Seeking Relief:

What a lot of stress you are putting yourself through.  All because of a poor self-managing habit.

I understand where you are coming from.  I, too, used to be regularly late.  People told me events started hours before they did.  I spent all my time racing around - panting and thinking up excuses as I raced it. I learned it from my Mother who is constantly late.

I'm rarely late now. I don't wear a watch.

How did I convert?  Easy.  I got left behind.  It was a boyfriend.  He'd just leave me.  It only had to happen
a few times.

Then years later I had a girl friend - same trip.  We'd have a plan to do something, I'd get to her
house on time - and that is when she would START getting ready while I had to wait 1-2 hours, or more.

Well, one day we were to meet in the City.  She was coming on the bus, I had gone ahead.  I met
bus after, bus after bus.  Then I just had it and I left and went to the party. She called. I didn't run
out and get her.  I told her, "Take the bus."

Guess what?  It was like magic. Lateness just didn't happen any more.  Now I regularly don't wait.

So what can you do? 

Well, first off, set your clock to the CORRECT  time - always.  Setting it ahead is a trap.  It actually encourages you to be late because you look at the time and then tell yourself that your really have more time, so you slow down and procrastinate even more.

Second, if it is over sleeping - then do what I made an employee do.  Hire someone - pay them $$$ - to come and get you out of bed and stay there until there is no danger of you going back to sleep.

Third, whatever amount of time ou think it will take to do something, like getting dressed or driving time, double it and begin that much earlier.  Then when you have all that extra time, you can glide into each situationůvery relaxed and very much in self-control - AND if there is a delay, you're covered - no reach to get stressed out.

Do it if you value your job.

Or perhaps, you'll have to lose your job.  Your boss givng you the extra half hour is a big mistake!!! He's
just feeding your problem. An employee of mine' lateness was infuriating. I'd need to leave - but where is he?  I'd wait and wait and wait.  Maybe he'd be a few minutes.  Or maybe he just wouldn't show up at all.

So finally, I made it  clear.  Be on time.  Otherwise, don't come to work and don't get paid.  If you
arrive late, I'm sending you home and you can try again the next day. Guess what?  That's right, he managed to be on time after that!

You DO have the ability to be one time.  You get to airplanes on time, right?  Otherwise, they take off without you. But you get other people, like a junkie, to feed your habit in subtle ways. How can you stop when others cottle you in this?


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