How To (and How Not To) Procrastinate

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Caroline Coppes, Contributor

In high school, procrastination almost comes as second nature. Why would someone want to start a paper that is due tomorrow when all five seasons of Breaking Bad are on Netflix? But, high schoolers aren’t the only ones who procrastinate.

Just about everyone has procrastinated on at least one thing or another in their life time. Between eighty and ninety percent of students procrastinate on their school work. The number of procrastinators has quadrupled within the last thirty years. Ninety percent of the population procrastinates and twenty percent are chronic procrastinators. People are more likely to eati poorly, sleep less and drink while procrastinating.

 Warning: Procrastination may cause falling behind, stress, anxiety, depression and even death. Okay… maybe not death, but nothing good will come out of it. Below is a seven step process of how to best maximize your procrastination.


Step 1: Write a list of all the things you need to get done during the day.

 Step 2: Throw the list away, you won’t be needing that.

 Step 3: Take off the jeans that are one size too small and put on a pair of overly comfortable sweatpants.

 Step 4: Find a dark room and lock the door… you don’t want anyone to disturb your highly productive environment. Oh, and make sure you hit the kitchen for some snacks and run to the bathroom, because believe me, you are not going to be coming out for anything.

 Step 5: Jump on the couch and grab as many blankets as you can, wrapping yourself into a human burrito.

 Step 6: Grab any electronic devices and turn them on. Go dig out that old IPod you have hiding under your bed.

 Step 7: Mindlessly scroll through every social media site ever, or watch every episode of a show until you get so behind on your responsibilities that you have to stay up all night. And besides, that paper won’t take that long, right?

 We all have important things to get done, so why do we hold off until the last minute to do everything?

 There are six main reasons why people procrastinate. The fear of failure causes people to procrastinate. Why would you want to do something when you might fail? On the opposite side of the spectrum, the fear of success can cause people to procrastinate. Not wanting to be in the spotlight, or the fear of what will happen next if you do well, can deter people from starting a project.

 Not knowing how to do something can also cause someone to procrastinate. Like that time you didn’t know how to do the math homework, so you just left it to the last minute? Or when you didn’t do the homework because you didn’t like the teacher and were resisting against authority? Yeah.

 It’s possible most of us can relate to procrastinating because the work is boring, or we lack the motivation to even start. The million dollar question is, how do you not procrastinate?

 Step 1: Make a to do list or map out what your going to do and when.

 Step 2: Start with the hardest stuff first, like the math homework.

 Step 3: Give yourself small rewards along the way, in between working really hard.

 Step 4: Remove all distractions: turn your phone off and log off Twitter.

 Step 5: Do one task at a time, and eventually, you will get it done.

 Good luck!

Maybe now I should start writing my article…