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I am always late. Why?

“No matter how hard I try, I’m still late!”, “I try to leave home early – but I still come to work the last”, “No matter what I do – I am always late, and everyone knows it”, “I am always rushing and hurrying – but I am still late!” 

Does it sound familiar? A huge number of people complain that they are constantly late. Everyone can get stuck in an elevator or a traffic jam. These things can happen to any of us occasionally. But we are talking about systematic tardiness, which seems beyond your control (in fact, it depends on you, of course) and can spoil your life quite a lot.

Over time, this becomes practically a character trait (not the best, we must say), and the number of problems that it provokes grows exponentially.

People are not very fond of chronic “tardies”. Even if you’re generally a responsible person, regularly arriving late gives you an image of a disorderly type that cannot be relied on. Not a particularly good story, is it?

Most likely you realize this about yourself. But then why is this happening?

Reason 1. You just don’t want to go there.

If you are not late for the plane that will take you to a vacation on the beach that you dreamed of, or to the concert of your favorite performer, but for a boring job, a tedious meeting, or to the dentist – then, most likely this is the reason.

By being late in these cases, you try to avoid momentary unpleasant emotions – irritation, anger, boredom, anxiety, or fear. And, although, in the long term, this not only does not help but also creates space for new unpleasant emotions – unconscious resistance can still take place.

Reason 2. Inability to estimate time.

“Yes, I have time”, “There is still plenty of time!”, “15 minutes is enough for me to wash my hair, do makeup, and have breakfast.”

Reason 3. “They are waiting for me – it means I am important.”

If you think that when people are waiting for you it means that they love or respect you, then being late may well be a consequence of this delusion.

Reason 4. “I’ll be late – so what?”

“They will wait, it’s OK”, “Important people are late because they have important things to do”, “I just need more time, what’s wrong with that?”

Disrespect for others and recognizing only your own needs as important can also be a hidden reason. Do you think the world should revolve around you? This may cause a lot of issues in relationships with other people.

Reason 5. Inability to deny yourself the little things

“I’ll lie down for two more minutes”, “I’ll watch the film, then I’ll quickly get ready”, “I’ll play this video game a little more, it is so interesting!”.

In the end, you catastrophically miss the schedule, run after the bus, scold yourself (“Damn you – late as always! Like a turtle! Again – you will hear from the boss about it!”).

Choosing a small treat like a cake or candy whenever you feel like it leads to a lot of self-dissatisfaction in the fitting room. The same applies to being late: the price of “little pleasant moments” turns out to be too high.

Reason 6. Label: “I am always late”, “I am disorganized”, “I am a loser – what can do? I will never succeed.”

If you think about yourself like this, then this label will force you to constantly “maintain the image” of someone who is always late.

This is how scripts and injuries from childhood manifest themselves. Most often, it turns out that these words in your head are said by your mother’s or father’s voice. And you continue to justify these labels because that is how the most authoritative people in your life once called you.

Reason 7. Internal conflict.

“Should I wear trousers or a skirt?”, “Maybe, after all, iron a shirt?” “Did I turn off the iron? Let me come back and check. “

Anxiety greatly inhibits any movement, forcing you to check and recheck everything several times, or change your choice, not trusting yourself.

If you are reading this article not with idle interest, but to solve the problem of tardiness, you should start by looking for the reason. To do this, analyze all the cases when you are late and remember what you think and feel at that time.

Your further actions will depend on what exactly caused your lateness. But there are also some generally useful recommendations.

• Move the clock 5-10 minutes ahead. Yes, such a simple life hack helps a lot to reduce the number of delays if you literally are late by “five minutes” all the time.

• Plan your day in advance. Prepare clothes and shoes, collect the necessary documents, look up the bus schedule and the route.

• Master time management: there may be too many tasks that overlap in your daily routine.

• Take off the label of always being late. Replace your usual phrases with the opposite: “I am good with time management”, “I arrive on time”, “Punctuality is important for me”, “I respect my own and other people’s time.”

• Try to be honest with yourself and not come up with excuses for being late.

• Take responsibility for your life. To be late or not is often a choice, time management is in our control (if we exclude real emergencies).

• Form the habit of being on time. To do this, you can use any convenient habit tracker and mark every timely arrival. At some point, you will notice more and more successes, especially if you reward yourself with something pleasant for each dozen.

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