It is hard to stop procrastinating, especially if you have been doing it for a long time.
Procrastination: one of the weaknesses that most of us have to face at least a few times in our lives. Putting our responsibilities off until the last possible moment may seem appealing at a first glance, but is it really worth it? While they might not fix the problem right away, these five reasons why you should stop procrastinating can give you a good place to start addressing the problem.
Procrastination harms your body
How many times have you been desperately cramming the night before an exam? Or maybe you had to work on a project from another class because you put off working on that project until the last minute–it’s all a never-ending story, isn’t it? You leave doing something for later, then you do the same for another thing, then another and suddenly you have four different things due on the same week and you don’t know how you are going to get everything done in time. Sound familiar? If it does, you are probably accustomed to procrastinating. Those late night cramming sessions deprive your body of something very essential: sleep. If your sleep schedule gets imbalanced, you feel crankier, pay less attention and crave more junk food.
Procrastination messes with your relationships
Have you ever had to say no to going out because you had to finish an essay that you could have easily completed had you started working on it days ago? Or have you ever missed an important event because you needed to cram for a difficult exam that you could have started studying for weeks ago? These can affect your social relationships. Saying no to things you really want to do because you simply have to get to work on that assignment/paper you’ve been putting off for so long can leave you feeling down. But by organizing yourself with a study schedule or coordinating specific times each week when you can get tasks done, you are doing yourself and your friends a favor! Work and a social life are important, but your grades are important too. By following a study schedule and turning it into a routine, you will notice that you have more time to relax and do what you want. There is nothing better than having fun without responsibilities nagging at the back of your mind.
Procrastination can harm your future
One of the dangers of procrastination is that it leads to a dangerous path of unproductiveness. If you do all the research for an important paper the night before it is due, the paper you turn in will probably differ greatly in quality than a paper that you did extensive research on. Once you know what you are going to write about, why not open a Google Document where you can store sources for future reference? If you do this two or three weeks before your paper is due, you will make sure to have at least some work done. If you procrastinate and leave yet another paper for the last minute, your subpar work will affect your grades. Today it might not seem like a big deal, but the quality of your grades can determine whether you get a much-needed scholarship, an important internship or perhaps even your first job once you are out of college. So try to plan ahead for those exam and paper due dates! You might even be surprised at how good it feels to be on top of things.
Procrastinating will always follow you around if you don’t stop
Once you develop a habit, it becomes difficult to break, doesn’t it? Procrastination is a never-ending cycle that constantly stresses you out and takes the fun out of your college experience. Sure, maybe procrastination isn’t causing you to fail any classes, perhaps you are passing with B’s, C’s–maybe a few A’s here and there- but if you would cut the procrastination in your life in half, you could start to see some positive results. By not putting a stop to this bad habit, you are following a pattern that keeps on hurting you. It is difficult, but forcing yourself to start studying or working when you really don’t want to is the most effective way to break this habit. Procrastination not only affects your grades, it can trickle into your work life and social life as well. If you permit it to grow more and more, it will follow you into your future jobs and relationships. By making a list of the tasks you need to do now and actually doing them, you are doing yourself a favor.
Procrastinating can destroy your reputation
That paper you turned in late? Your professor noticed. The poorly edited part of your group project that you submitted? Your group members noticed that, too. These people were aware of your poorly done work, and now they probably don’t think very highly of you. Maybe you don’t really care what others think about you, perhaps you believe that other’s opinions about you aren’t important. Even if you don’t care at all, it is convenient for you to stay on your professor’s good side. That same professor who now thinks of you an unreliable student could have given you a reference letter, a networking opportunity or even some help for that upcoming test. Think of all the opportunities available to you if you put in just a bit more effort!
Hopefully the five reasons above will help you cut out procrastination–or give you a good idea about where you can start! The truth is, being a college student is stressful. Try to cut procrastination from your life slowly if it is too overwhelming. Something as simple as getting a calendar, buying a planner or even an app that helps you organize your priorities can be of tremendous help to you. Remember that nothing can beat the feeling of having your grades–and life under control.