How did you become an expert on procrastination?
After 20+ years of research, teaching, coaching and training, I’ve learned a thing or two about managing procrastination.
I’m an Oxford graduate who struggled with perfectionism during my studies. And although I conducted postgraduate research and published academic articles, I never got round to finishing my doctoral thesis. I wish I’d known then what I know now!
After leaving Oxford, I started out as a politics lecturer at Queen Mary, London University, then taught social sciences and study skills at the Open University for 14 years. Over the years I met countless students who struggled with deadlines and distractions. And I also witnessed the impact of procrastination among teaching colleagues. As a result I started to research ways to shift these habits.
Fascinated by the role of motivation in teaching and learning, I trained as a certified professional co-active coach at the Coaches Training Institute. In 2008 I took the leap into self-employment and launched my consultancy JLP Coach. Since then I’ve coached hundreds of individuals from diverse backgrounds. And I’ve spoken to audiences of all sizes, from student groups to international conferences. I’ve led workshops in boardrooms, classrooms, conference halls and even a spa! And recently I’ve led virtual training for individuals and organisations worldwide.
So I understand how students, professionals and entrepreneurs struggle with procrastination. Drawing on research from psychology, education, business I’ve developed my own coaching approach to help.
What are your credentials?
In addition to my degree in Politics, Philosophy & Economics, I hold a postgraduate teaching certificate from the Open University. So I’m now a Fellow of the Higher Education Authority. I’m also a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a charity committed to innovation and social change.
I’ve been a member of APDO Association of Professional Declutterers & Organisers for over a decade and served for 6 years as an Board member. During this time, I wrote and led the 1st UK courses for professional organisers. I’m also proud to be involved with the Institute for Challenging Disorganization – I contribute to the ICD Time Management & Productivity task force and am currently writing a chapter on procrastination for a new textbook.
During the Covid-19 pandemic, I continued to coach online and to speak at several virtual events. I also founded an Academy of Virtual Organisers and created the 1st UK training for professional organisers who are pivoting to work with clients online.
In 2017 I won the Small Business Sunday business award created by Theo Paphitis and in 2019 I was a finalist for the Work Avenue Brand of the Year business award. And just for fun, I was delighted to be awarded the Queen of Organising Skills award by the Aqua Design Group.
Any publications to help with procrastination?
I’ve written two books for the popular What’s Your Excuse? series: Being More Productive (2017) outlines practical strategies to stop procrastinating. Clearing Your Clutter (2018) will help you to declutter and get organised. My next book will be on how to help teens to develop effective time management and study skills. In addition, I’ve written countless articles about time management, organising and productivity, and am regularly featured in the media.
And on a personal note?
I not only live but thrive with Charcot-Marie-Tooth neurological illness. That’s why I have a special interest in supporting students and adults with disabilities. A lifelong learner, I’m currently learning to lip read.
I share my home in NW London with two young adults and a little white rescue pup.