“Fred” made an morning appointment for a hypnosis session because he was procrastinating going into work so well that he was not showing up at all.
Fred called me at the time of his appointment to tell me that he had not yet gotten ready to leave his house. We made another appointment for the next day, and the same thing happened. Fred was very elegantly demonstrating his procrastination skills for me.
When Fred called the third time when he was due in my office to let me know that he had not gotten out of his house yet, I told him that I would wait for him until he arrived.
That is how Fred finally made it to my office.
Fred’s story was that he was a lowest level supervisor in a government warehouse. Fred did not like his work. There were some bad or even illegal things happening there. He never told me just what they were. Fred was so unhappy about the situation that he was just staying home most days.
Eventually, because of his absenteeism, Fred was going to get fired. According to Fred, he was penalized more for arriving late than not going to work at all. The government works in mysterious ways.
We discussed the options. Fred did not want to move to another organization. He did not want to move inside his current organization. He did not want to be a whistle blower and confront the problems at his current workplace. And, he did not want to get fired. Apparently, just letting an employee collect a paycheck without ever showing up was unworkable, even for the government.
So, I did a hypnosis session with Fred, and suggested that he needed to make a choice. It was either go to work, move on, or be forced to move on. He started going back to work…for a while.
It turns out that the final solution was to find a compelling reason for Fred to get back to work. Just earning a living was not enough incentive, so I used questions from NLP (NeuroLinguistic Programming) meta model to determine Fred’s highest values in life and work. And, that provided the key to his getting back to his job every day.
Fred was dedicated to his crew at work.
Fred thought that his crew was not being treated fairly by the other supervisors when he was not there. So, Fred went back to work to take care of his men. While Fred was in hypnosis, I used the imagery of a hero protecting his crew. Fred needed and wanted to be that hero. And, that is the story of how Fred defeated his procrastination.