How to Start: The First Question to Be Answered

Posted under I am Always Late on Wednesday 30 July 2008 at 9:25 pm

Let’s suppose that you have already understood very well how serious can be the consequences of chronic lateness. This problem can really bring to very disappointing results. For example, you can be a good, experienced and well-qualified specialist, but if you are a chronic latecomer, your employer will definitely prefer another less qualified and proficient employee. Chronic lateness and tardiness always result in lost money, wasted time, missed opportunities, forgotten birthdays, lost friendships, hurt feelings, gone hopes, morale and psychological problems, and so on.

So, you have made up your mind to start the battle against your lateness and want to learn how to prioritize, schedule and handle all your work on time. In such case, we are in the beginning of an interesting journey, during which I will open you the secrets of effective self organization and time management. You must be wondering now, where do we start from? To begin with, you need to ask yourself three very important questions and give very thoughtful and considerate answers. The first question to be answered is: what type of a latecomer are you?

We all know that all people belong to the following groups:

• The people who are never late.
• The people who are late sometimes, mostly due to some serious circumstances, such as problems with transportation, a sickness, stresses or heavy load at work, etc.
• The people who usually come a little later to any sort of ordinary meetings or dates, but still can control their time and generally be on time for more important events.
• The chronic latecomers, who are late in 95-99% of the situations.

Unfortunately, within the last decades the share of the last two groups of people has been firmly increasing. If you are sure that you belong to the first two groups, I do not think that you need to change something in your behavior because you are simply not a latecomer. However, if you belong to the last two groups (especially to the fourth one), you have to get ready for a long way to self-improvement that will soon bring to great changes in your life and your attitude toward your own time.

Now, you can continue analyzing your behavior and looking for the answer on the question using some help from an experienced specialist. In a recently published bestseller “Never Be Late Again: 7 Cures for the Punctually Challenged”, Diana Delonzor, an expert in overcoming perpetual lateness, classifies chronic latecomers the following way:

The Absent-Minded Professor: a person who lives in his or her own world and never thinks about time, who always forgets everything or can be distracted very easily. Such people are usually slow and leave their things here and there. They often jump from one activity to another or get lost in what they are doing.

The Indulger: a procrastinator who has obvious lack of self-control and wastes the time for doing useless things. These people have no good concept of time and always put important things off that leads to chronic lateness.

The Evader: a person who always feels the necessity to control own environment, and this idea makes him/her anxious. Such people have problems with self-organization, and their inability to do the things properly makes them feel helpless and stressed out. At that, the Evaders’ own needs or routine takes precedence over their being on time.

The Deadliner: a person, who truly enjoys running behind the schedules and looks for a crisis to get motivated and win the battle. Adrenaline in the form of the last-minute sprint to the finish line is the best way for them to prove own importance: however, it always leads to being desperately late.

The Rationalizer: a person who is very often late for work or meeting, but always justifies such behavior by various outside circumstances. Such people hate being reminded about their being late because they do not acknowledge their responsibility for lateness and blame everything or everyone but themselves. Usually, they are able to make up very realistic excuses for their lateness.

The Producer: a very busy person who tends to squeeze incredible amount of tasks into every minute and do several things at the same time. They are always late because they can not properly schedule their time and have to go on doing something they have planned. Like the Rationalizers, many of the Producers also do not admit their fault for being late, because punctuality is not a priority in their life.

The Rebel: a passive-aggressive type of people, who truly hate stereotypes, everyday rules and schedules. By being always late they try to resist authority and underline their courage of breaking the laws. For the Rebels, their tardiness is a form of demonstrating that they are in control of their own life.