Beat the Urge to Procrastinate
By Molly Dutmers
“Ok, let me just go on Facebook for a minute,” you think to yourself. Or, “I’m just going to watch one episode of “Friends” on Netflix. Then two hours later, you haven’t moved a muscle. Procrastination is something that we are all guilty of, but it can be prevented. Here is a list of five tips that will help you break the urge to put off your work.
1. Make a To-Do List
Writing down everything that you have to do helps you realize all that you need to accomplish. This can push your body into focus mode and help you sit down and finally get to work. It can also help you prioritize. Try doing your least favorite task first, then the rest of the things that you have to do will seem much easier.
2. Break Down a Task into a Series of Smaller Tasks
One of the reasons that people procrastinate is because they are overwhelmed by all that they have to do. If you break down your task into a series of smaller tasks, the work seems much more manageable and you are less threatened by it. Once you break the task down once, break it down again. Then it will seem so simple that you will have no excuse for putting it off.
3. Treat Yo Self
Make a deal with yourself. “If I finish this research paper by 2:00 p.m., I will get to have ice cream after dinner tonight,” or “If I respond to all the emails in my inbox within the hour, I can take an extra ten minutes at lunch.” Rewarding yourself gives you motivation to finish your work in a timely manner.
4. Cut Out Temptation
Self control is an Internet application that allows you to block certain websites for a set period of time. When you are studying you will then be able to block distracting sites like Facebook or BuzzFeed. Also cut out temptation by avoiding areas that make you prone to procrastinating. If you find that you always want to sleep when you try and do work in your bedroom, try working in the library or your office instead.
5. Work with Friends
Having someone to get your work down with can be extremely helpful, as long as the person is not a distraction. Working with someone else who is focused on the task at hand can help hold you accountable for you work. Even if the two of you do not have the same end goal, you can still work together and hold each other responsible for your work. Having a partner spurs you to take action.