"I will stop procrastinating... Tomorrow"

This past week was a real eye-opener for me as I have learned a lot from the consequences of my actions. The funny thing, however, what happened to me this past week, has actually happened 3 years prior; I think the aftermath of this year finally made me realize that I have to change, otherwise there is no way of me succeeding at anything in the future.

Of course what I'm talking about, and what I need to change – immediately – is my relentless procrastination! It is absolutely awful! It has plagued me for many years of my life, but instead of getting better, it is only reaching new heights, and I cannot sit back and let it suck me in any longer.

This week was the first week back after reading week, and to put it colloquially, it was a week from H-E- double hockey sticks! And of course, I am the only one to blame, because I chose, once again, not to take advantage of the week off, and actually do some school work. Like I said before, this is the usual routine for my reading breaks – not doing school work – but this time it hit me tenfold. I have never felt so disorganized in my life! I think in total, I only got 8-10 hours of sleep for the entire week; I was sick and coughing up my already weak lungs; I missed too many classes because I was doing midterms/studying/reading for others; and on top of that, I had to pay $400 so my arm could be numb for the entire week, from the vaccination shots I received! I'm just glad the school reimburses us, otherwise I don't think I could afford to go to India. There is more I could say about this week, but I digress. I'm sure there are students who are in the same predicament as myself, or maybe even worse. And I am not doing this so we can have a “pity party” for Raquel. The last thing I need is pity! What I do need is tough love and discipline (and a massage). But by putting my bad habit out there, this may be a different way for me to solve the problem, because I usually just deal with everything internally and by myself.

So let me continue to “put myself out there”: Once I got myself in this situation and realized that I needed to stay up hours on end to finish everything, that's what I did. I was able to finish everything that I needed to, on time, and some would commend my efforts. To tell you the truth, most procrastinators I know end up pulling everything off in the knick of time, and we end up doing well, for the most part. (These are the ones I know, not all procrastinators can do this). Most procrastinators would agree that it's that added pressure of working under the gun that fuels our creative energy. But honestly, I just can't take it anymore. After this week, I left too much to the last minute, and despite completing everything, I was still disappointed with myself. I was disappointed that I put myself in that situation, yet again; I was disappointed at the fact that I wasn't 100% satisfied with my end work; and I was mostly disappointed that after so many years, and so many proclamations about wanting to end my procrastination, that nothing had changed.

Let's just say that I've been kicking myself all week! But enough beating myself up, I need to move forward. A quote I read from Walt Disney said, “You may not realize when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you.” Life is faced with endless challenges and it's how you meet those challenges that really matters. It would say a lot about my character if I continued down this downward spiral, and let my procrastination get the best me. Or I could recognize that it is making me unhappy, and that it's jeopardizing my academic career. I choose the latter, but I know this is not going to fix itself in a day. I'm young, I'm making mistakes and trying my best to learn from them, even though this particular mistake keeps reoccurring. But I'm also human, and some habits, like procrastination, take some more time to break. I think what might make the difference this time around, is that I truly hit an all time low, and I never want to feel like this again. I WANT to change, and I want to get rid of this horrible habit.

Now that I admitted to being an incessant procrastinator (the first step is always admittance), it's time to take action … and no, I won't start next week! I'm actually really good at writing down tasks and what needs to be done. It's somewhere after compiling the list that either laziness kicks in, or the television or Facebook beckons. As something new, I'm going to post, here, some reasons I found as to why I procrastinate and then some advice/steps I found to help me fight it. Hopefully when I catch myself procrastinating, I can come here, read this list, and get back to work.

Here's a few:

PROBLEM: “People don't want to face the consequences of failure, so they delay.” (Pace Productivity)
SOLUTION: “Develop a clear mental picture of the completed task and how you will feel at that time. Maintain a focus on the end result, not just the process. Remind yourself how good you'll feel when you're finished”(Pace Productivity)

PROBLEM: Laziness.
SOLUTION: Joanne, the director, said this simple phrase to the class: “Be like Nike, and 'JUST DO IT' ”

PROBLEM: Not taking the first step
SOLUTION: “When you start to look too far into the future any task or project can seem close to impossible. And so you shut down because you become overwhelmed and start surfing the internet aimlessly instead. That is one of the reasons why it is good to plan for the future but then to shift your focus back to today and the present moment”(Henrick Edberg, Positivity Blog).

PROBLEM: Too much thinking, not enough doing
SOLUTION: “A bit of planning can certainly help you to achieve what you want to achieve. A lot of planning and thinking tends to have the opposite effect. So plan a little and then take action” (Henrick Edberg, Positivity Blog).

PROBLEM: Putting off small tasks
SOLUTION: “By over thinking and putting things off you are not only trying to protect yourself from pain. You also make mountains out of molehills … The more hours and days you put something off the worse it grows in your mind … This makes a little thing a big Godzilla, a horrible beast that is threatening to ruin your life” (Edberg).

For more great tips and detailed explanations on how to stop procrastinating, click: The Positivity Blog.

Also, check out this video I found on Youtube... it's where I got the title for my blog!

Until next week :)

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2 Response to ""I will stop procrastinating... Tomorrow""

  1. Krista says:
    February 27, 2010 at 2:19 PM

    procrastination has also taken over my life!

  2. savija-nevena says:
    March 4, 2010 at 7:30 PM

    ohhhh mannn, can I eer relate!
    So, I got assigned this really cool paper at the beginning of this term. Cool paper you're thinking? Well.. The paper was on "something to do with water - anything." I love water, I love the thought of sanitation, discussion of types of sanitation and water safety, clean drinking water, all that nerdy stuff.
    It was due this Thursday morning, 60% of my mark. I started writing, the actually body of the paper at 5am this morning...
    TALK about procrastination. Thankfully, I did the research the day before, otherwise.. I am not sure where I would be right now...
    This was my wake-up call, especially since the professor I handed this paper too (please-never make me re-read it...!!), is my fourth-year thesis adviser....yup!
    It's hard, I used to be extremely organized. Sometimes you reach a point when you just become fed up one way or another, start slacking .. or some other reason, but we all go through this "lazy" period.
    I am sure you will get the action rolling soon!


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