ACoAs & TIME (Part 2)

take so much longer than I think??!!

PREVIOUS: ACoAs & Time (Part 1)

SITEs :  Kids, ADHD & Time
✦ Time Management Tips

Take back control of your time

QUOTEs : “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.” ~ Steve Jobs
❥ “Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.” ~ M Scott Peck
⌛️  ⏰   🕔
1. Lost Time and 2. Wasted Time  (Part 1)

a. Much more time than something should normally take
Our damage makes any action an insurmountable project. ACoAs will put off taking actions because WE :
• are convinced it’ll take forever. Whether a task is it’s a big or small, we:
a– don’t divide it into manageable chunks, –b– don’t have an realistic time sense & –c– hate the slowness of process
• have to obey the rule “No play ‘till all your work is done” which of course will never happen, so we go on strike instead, & do nothing!
• have to obey the rule “You have to struggle but never get there” so why start?stuck in time
• (think we) don’t know how, & can’t ask for help, so why bother?
• we’re afraid of making the wrong choice, & the get punished or be terribly disappointed – again
• we can’t decide what to do first – everything is equally big, important, scary… because as a kid the same amount of emphasis was put on large or small events, mistakes, tasks… so we never learned to prioritize

▪️ re. ACTIONS – While these reasons are ‘hangovers’ from childhood, the root of the procrastination is our inner conflict now, between:
• what we want & what the Introject (PP) wants or won’t allow (or with others in the present)
• our damaged part (WIC) & the emerging Healthy Adult voice

These internal arguments have to be resolved by the ‘UNIT in order to proceed. The exciting thing is that when the WIC is on the same page with the Healthy Self, we find that many actions take very little time, are not a big deal AND we actually did know how. No conflict = No delay!

T.E.A. suggestions
Thoughts: write out the opposing points of view (sometimes 3 & 4 different ones) of the argument you’re having with yourself about a situation you’re stuck on
Emotions: list the emotions related to each ‘voice’- they can be different

Actions: identify the actions you want or need to take, & what you think the results will be, depending on the voice you decide to follow
✍️ Actually try out which ever side you choose (As) & then later write down the results. Evaluate (T) the outcome & see how it feels (Es).
This is “Bookending” & is very effective
✍️ You can also use the 2 forms on the post “Why Are You Stuck?

b. Much less time than is realistic
In this care we consistently underestimate how much time is needed to get something done. This can come from unreliable people we have to depend on, who give up inaccurate time-estimates,  but mostly from our own unrealistic expectations.
This relates to the ACoAs who:
♦︎ always over-book, plan things too close together, don’t allow enough time to get places or time for possible delays – and don’t allow for process…
Like: underestimate how long it takes for – a renovation, a doctor visit, to taking a trip, developing a friendship, waiting for a delivery, a check, an email or the return of a text! (it pushes our Abandonment button)
♦︎ those of us who try to do several things at one time. This is not about multi-tasking, but rather expecting, magically, to be able to be in more than one place at a time
Like: attending 2 conflicting events, such as making plans to go shopping alone and having lunch with a friend – at about the same time!
—> not doing things consecutively, OR picking one & letting the other go.
It’s one of the reasons some ACoAs are habitually late (cont. in Part 3)

NEXT: ACoAs & Time (Part 3)

ACoAs & TIME (Part 1)

slow time
Everything takes forever

PREVIOUS: Over-Feelers (#2)


REVIEW: Pre-FoO work, ACoAs are run mainly by 2 internal ego states – the WIC, who is listening to the PP. One of the signs of this is the unrealistic way many of us deal with time, and timing.
The Inner Child:
 IS still confused by not having been taught process, nor given age-appropriate limits by neglectful parents, which resulted in not knowing how long things take.
Now, depending on the size of a project, there may be many steps between setting a goal & achieving it, yet we don’t allow for the realistic stages of the process.
OR it:
IS reacting to too many constraints imposed by controlling parents who interfered with our natural internal rhythms & time sense.
Now, we either follow the training & become rigidly time conscious, OR rebel by taking our own sweet time, OR do nothing as often as possible

a. To our damage – years spent in S-H, with the wrong lovers, friends, jobs, apartments, the wrong neighborhood or city for us, still involved with abusive &/or uncaring family members….
In Recovery, we need to mourn the loss of time stolen by living in our False Selflosing time

b. Dissociating 
from anxiety. ACoAs are fear-based, which is backlogged from childhood. When faced with any situation that pushes a button or bumps an old wound, we may temporarily ‘go blank‘ & lose track of time, for a few minutes, or much longer.

EXP: Janie desperately wanted to study fine art, but couldn’t afford it. She had to work in an office, which didn’t suit her temperament & where she was not liked. At some point she was reprimanded for always being late. Trying to change that, the next day she got up 30 minutes earlier & started her ‘automatic’ morning routine BUT found herself standing in the middle of her room – completely blank – not knowing what to do next. Eventually she snapped out of it & finished getting ready, but by then knew she’d be late – again!  Her unconscious had sandbagged her – she clearly didn’t want to be going to that job.

lost time from ADD, dyslexia. Many ACoAs have learning disabilities. This does NOT indicate intellectual deficiency – on the contrary, it usually correlates with high intelligence, but creates varying degrees of difficulty in learning, communicating, & dealing with time accurately

• Keep in mind that many ACoA characteristics mimic ADD symptoms in adults. They’re both caused by stress & affect the brain, but ADD is genetic, so treatment is different for the 2 problems. The healthier we get emotionally, the more we can tell the difference. In recovery, the ACoA symptoms will diminish or disappear, while the ADD ones will not, which need the right medication & some behavior-mod training

Many ACoAs don’t know what to do with chunks of free time:wastw time
• too much anxiety – from perfectionism, toxic rules, fear of commitment & decision-making, avoiding disappointment, fear of risk…
• not self-motivated (Autonomy & Attachment, Part 2)
• wanting to do too many things at once, so don’t choose anything, puttering around, not accomplishing much
• too tired from all the daily stress we put ourselves under so need to veg out but then feel gypped, frustrated, angry at ourselves…

▪️ REQUIREMENTs for growth : a willingness to break some Toxic Rules, like the ones listed in “Part 1, 2a
• Plan ahead, write on a monthly or weekly calendar things you can schedule ahead.
Stick to your plans, whenever possible, & notice how it feels afterwards. When things don’t work out, try something different
• Make a list of activities you’d like to do or might like to try – during ‘free time’, & when the time comes (weekends?) look at it when you can’t think of anything to do OR you have too many options
• Fun time is NOT about priorities. You don’t have to know what to do FIRST! Just pick something you know you like & focus on enjoying it.

NEXT: ACoAs & TIME (Part 2)