Experiences of undergoing Internet-based cognitive behavior therapy for procrastination: A qualitative study

Internet interventions constitute a promising and cost-effective treatment alternative for a wide range of psychiatric disorders and somatic conditions. Several clinical trials have provided evidence for its efficacy and effectiveness, and recent research also indicate that it can be helpful in the treatment of conditions that are debilitating, but not necessarily warrant more immediate care, for instance, procrastination, a self-regulatory failure that is associated with decreased well-being and mental health. However, providing treatment interventions for procrastination via the Internet is a novel approach, making it unclear how the participants themselves perceive their experiences. The current study (which was accepted for publication today) thus investigated participants’ own apprehension of undergoing Internet-based cognitive behavior therapy for procrastination by distributing open-ended questions at the post treatment assessment, for instance, “What did you think about the readability of the texts”, “How valuable do you believe that this treatment has been for you?”, and “The thing that I am most displeased with (and how it could be improved) is…”. In total, 75 participants (50 %) responded, and the material was examined using thematic analysis. The results indicate that there exist both positive and negative aspects of the treatment program. Many participants increased their self-efficacy and were able to gain momentum on many tasks and assignments that had been deferred in their everyday life. Meanwhile, several participants lacked motivation to complete the exercises, had too many conflicting commitments, and were unable to keep up with the tight treatment schedule. Hence, the results suggest that Internet interventions for procrastination could profit from individual tailoring, shorter and more manageable modules, and that the content need to be adapted to the reading comprehension and motivational level of the participant.

Read the full paper:
Rozental, A., Forsström, D., Tangen, J. A., & Carlbring, P. (2015). Experiences of undergoing Internet-based cognitive behavior therapy for procrastination: A qualitative study. Internet Interventions, 2(3), 314-322. doi: 10.1016/j.invent.2015.05.001