‘Art’ of Procrastination

by Brienne Kenlock

Written on March 12th, 2016

Updated March 20th, 2016

 

On Tuesday, March 8th, 2016, an event was held at the Counseling Center called “Ban All Procrastination: Time Is Running Out”. At the meeting, students discussed how procrastination took part in their daily routine.

Reina Saavedra, a 22-year-old Health Promotion Management major said, “My experiences with procrastination is that it happens all the time. Sometime I have a lot of essays to do while trying to study for exams and I leave it until the last minute”.

Cynthia Rodriguez

Cynthia Rodriguez, 19-year-old Studio Art major. One of the people who was present at the event.

Photo by Brienne Kenlock

 

“My experience with procrastination is an ongoing one. I always had problems with procrastinating since high school; you could even say from middle school. It’s been a struggle to deal with”, said Cynthia Rodriguez, a 19-year-old Studio Art major. “For work, I would push it away until the last minute which then leads me to get very stressed”.

Scott Smith, the Student Psychological Counselor at York College added on how prioritizing affects people’s personal ethics. “There is this thought process; ‘I have to do it even though I don’t want to’, depending on what task you’re performing”.

Scott Smith (2)

Scott Smith, the Student Psychological Counselor who organized the event.

Photo by Brienne Kenlock at the Counseling Center

 

According to an article on Mindfit Hypnosis.com, people procrastinate because they lack self-control with no way to curb their impulses. Smith said “people procrastinate when accepting instant gratification for a favorable path instead of giving it all to the task at hand.

Being overburdened with important work makes it difficult to focus on a task without flexibility or motivation to plan ahead, according to Rodriguez. It puts a strain on emotional health, made worse with personal health at risk.

“I realized when I began to have migraines from spending my time on electronics, to the point where it got painful and frequent enough. You even begin to feel nauseous and taking medication sometimes rarely works unless it’s a higher dosage, which can be dangerous”, Rodriguez recalled. “That was when I said to myself, ‘This has to stop”.

In other cases, one’s academic career is in jeopardy of failing. Saavedra said, “I realized that it was affecting me because my grades started dropping. So I had to stop procrastinating and get a journal to remind myself what I have to do”.

The first step in overcoming procrastination asking how and why it happens. “I’ll do it tomorrow, we say and the next day and the day after that until it’s the last minute”, Smith said. The answer is exercising willpower.

“It’s very easy to fall behind. Everything is much easier to access. On smartphones, you can do a million and one things on the device that keep you occupied. If you finish with Netflix, you could just scroll through your apps on go on something else just as quick. Media is all around us in electronics and it’s getting easier and easier to get distracted”, she said.

In these times, it is easy to get distracted by everything in the environment. One way is through the excess, not access, of technology. Technology is useful and many times helpful in everyday life, but it can easily become a burden if abused too much. This habit takes many forms such as watching TV or going through social media a lot. According to The Huntington News, a study conducted in 2014 showed that students who used social media often got distracted in the process of doing assignments. Out of 1,500 who were polled, about 64 percent of students reported being unable to concentrate after being alerted from social media, and 14 percent reported being distracted because they watched TV.

That study was done by Stop Procrastinating, a website that specializes in restricting websites for people who want to retain focus. They also have an app In 2015, they conducted another study in which 2,000 college students were observed. 44 percent reported lacking impulse control because of using social media too much and another 44 percent reported that procrastination led to the quality of work being done at the last minute due to being distracted by the Internet.

There are many ways to avoid procrastination. One being restricting all technology and social media so they do not become a stumbling block. Rodriguez opted with a different approach at the Tuesday event; keeping her phone in a separate room or giving it to her parents to keep from unnecessary distractions.

 

“I keep a small notepad in my bag and write down what I have to do. I try to avoid using my phone to write important things down because I get distracted and use my phone for social media”, said Saavedra.

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