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Chapter 4. It's All in Your Head > Freudian Slips - Pg. 42

It's All in Your Head 42 Freudian Slips For most people, procrastination is a bad habit they've picked up and can't seem to shake because of the powerful psychological hold that habits can have. But sometimes procrastination signals a more serious mental health issue. The following disorders are often associated with procrastination: · · · · Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) Anxiety Depression I'm not saying that procrastination and psychological disorders always go hand in hand, but if you find that your procrastination is chronic and extreme and is having a seriously negative impact on your life, then one of these issues could possibly be the culprit. Diagnosing any of these disorders is beyond the scope of this or any other book; you'd have to meet with a psychologist, psychiatrist, or learning disability specialist and describe your feelings and situation in order to get a complete, accurate diagnosis. As a first step, you might want to learn more about these disorders by browsing the Web sites listed in the "Learning Disabilities and ADD" and "Mental Health" sections of Appendix C and contacting the organizations listed in those sections of Appendix B. You can also read more about them in the "Mental Health" section of Appendix A. In the meantime, to give you an idea of what these disorders can feel like, I've taken the formal diagnostic criteria that psychiatrists and psychologists use (that is, the definitions and checklists they use when trying to figure out whether someone has one of these problems) and have sum- marized them in layperson's terms for you in the following sections. Once again, don't take this information as the last word on ADD, OCD, anxiety, and depression. These summaries just scratch the surface of the complete, clinical definitions of those disorders. You can't tell whether you have one of them just from reading these descriptions; for that, you need to turn to the resources and professionals I previously recommended. Attention Deficit Disorder People with ADD (or the related problem of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, known as ADHD) tend to have great difficulty getting and staying organized. They may have trouble focusing on one task long enough or intensely enough to complete it. They may be easily distracted, forgetful, and prone to losing things. Quicksand! Only a qualified, licensed mental health professional can accurately diagnose a psychological disorder. Don't try to diagnose or treat yourself, and don't be afraid or embarrassed to seek help.