Sunday, April 13, 2014

How to not procrastinate at UT Tyler

The great Walt Disney once said that “the way to get started is to quit talking and start doing.”
Procrastination is something that every college student has to deal with. I know that it affects me every day.  For example, I would much rather watch Game of Thrones, play video games, read, swim, watch grass grow, and pretty much anything else than write my 20 page research paper that’s due in less than a week now.  Ironically, as I continue to put off my paper, I am writing this very blog about how to stop procrastinating. 

This is an extremely popular topic – one that both Dallas and Emmy wrote on.  However, that does that not mean that occasional reminders do not help.  Hopefully, with this post I can help bring to light some old and new ideas on how to stop putting things off and starting getting things done. Let's stop talking and start doing!

Figure out what distracts you
The first way to stomp out problems like procrastination is to, as Socrates would put it, “know thyself.” Figure out what distracts you and minimize your contact with it while you work.  If you waste a lot of times on Facebook, then just do not visit the website while you work.  If you are not that self-disciplined, then have a friend you trust change your password until you are finished working.  If that still does not work, then try one of these applications that block the website for you.

If you are distracted by television or video games, then hide your power cord for the device at a friend’s house or somewhere in your house where it would take some effort to get, so that you are not tempted to get it while you are supposed to be working. This will ensure that you do not play games or watch TV while you are supposed to be writing your 20 page research paper.

Trick yourself
If you keep a calendar, then record all of your due dates a week early so that you have incentive to get started working. This way, when you inevitably wait until the night before the assignment is “due,” you will really have an extra week to work.  This is what I do all the time.  I make myself think that my assignment is due earlier than it is so I have a little extra time to get it done.

Keep a calendar
If you do not keep a date book, start.  This is the first step you need to take, as it will allow you to keep track of when everything is due.  If you have a working knowledge of when your assignments are due, then you are more likely to work harder to get them done.  There are a multitude of options you can take advantage of.  If you prefer to keep everything on your phone, then use your calendar on your phone.  If you prefer an internet based headquarters for all of your dates, then use google calendar or a similar service.  I prefer to keep a physical calendar that I carry with me everywhere so I can keep track of everything. 

Change the venue
If you have trouble studying in your room at your desk, try going to find a better place that works for you.  Go to the library to get a quiet workspace that feels productive.  If you need some background noise, then try to find a coffee shop like Starbucks where you can get free wifi access.  If you prefer to work outside, then find a nice spot on campus or at a park where you can sit in the sun and work.  Whatever works for you, go do it.  Working where you can feel productive will make you productive.

Work with a buddy
Find a friend with homework and work on your assignments together. It does not even have to be the same assignment.  If you have someone to keep you accountable, then there is a higher probability you can be productive yourself.  This also means you have someone to make sure that you are not browsing Facebook of Tumblr. 

Got any additional tips? Feel free to let me know how you stop procrastinating in the comments!

1 comment:

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