All in Good Time



Midterm season is upon us and many students are already drowning in the sea of endless papers, exams, projects and reports! Rather than tackle the overwhelming pile of responsibilities taunting us, many choose to take the irrational approach (according to Sigmund Freud’s Psychoanalytic theory), and find ways to distract ourselves from our priorities. I would say that procrastination is a student’s #1 adversary in this battlefield called University!

In the short run, students win the battle – we undoubtedly experience immense satisfaction when doing things we enjoy rather than studying (there is nothing like the thrill of watching Viola Davis manipulate her way to another victory in the courtroom!). However, in the long run, procrastination wins the war – it clouds our judgment and entices us to watch ‘just one more episode’! Before we know it, what was only 2 chapters of reading left to be done, has become 8 chapters, 2 ‘short’ articles, 10 lecture recordings, and a 5–page paper due at midnight! We all know procrastination is wrong and the end result is painful, but why do we keep putting ourselves in such a compromising position?

4 reasons I attribute to this bad habit are:

1) Fear:

  • Fear of Failure: If you are afraid that you will not do well in a particular assignment, you might avoid working on it at all. “What is the point?”
  • Fear of losing autonomy: Procrastination makes some people feel in control of their situations. They may not like being told what to do, and when to do it by! “I will do it, when I WANT to do it!”
  • Fear of being alone: Many people have a fear of missing out! They may want to hang out with their friends instead of being alone in the library.

2) Perfection: We expect ourselves to be perfect. Perfectionists tend to procrastinate because they have such high expectations of themselves and their work, and they become scared about whether or not they can achieve those high standards!

3) Too Busy: While juggling multiple things at once (jobs, classes, hobbies, friends, family, life struggles etc…), it is very likely that certain aspects will have to be prioritized while others take the backseat! We just need to aim to achieve a good balance.

4) Because it works: Unfortunately, procrastination helps reinforce itself! Doing something you love always feels better than doing something you hate!

I have struggled with time management and procrastination for a long time, and have just started getting a grasp on my priorities and schedule! For those busy bees like me who are trying to kick this bad habit, I would really recommend that you attend the Skills for Time Management workshop and the Skills for Effective Study workshop offered by McGill’s Counselling service.

We’re all in this together! #FightProcrastination! 🙂

(P.S. Writing this blog post was my daily dose of procrastination! I should get back to studying now! Ok Bye!)

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