Why Do We Procrastinate? Piecing The Puzzle

Procrastinating is a common habit that can be difficult to break. Typically, procrastination is not the root of the problem. We avoid doing work because of stress, social media and mental health. While this may seem obvious, we often blame laziness. Last year I struggled with putting off projects to the last minute. I was not motivated and not in a good mental state to finish my work. Here are a few tips that helped me.

First, think about why you avoid tasks such as homework. If you didn’t prioritize responsibilities growing up, you don’t have a great foundation for it now. Being raised by a single mom, she was incredibly busy and didn’t always have time to help with homework. I often brushed it off until later, but I have found using an hour of my day for 30 days to read or write has helped develop my attention span

As you build your motivation, start making a list of work that needs to be done. Checking boxes allows you to see your progress. Organization also allows you to anticipate deadlines. 

Another reason you may have trouble doing work is because of your mental health. Depression and anxiety are common. These disorders can be debilitating if left untreated. If you feel you are unable to do work because of nerves or tiredness, it may help to talk to a psychologist or counselor. Washburn offers therapy and psychological services on campus to enrolled students. 

Social media passes the time all too well. Scrolling for a minute can quickly turn into an hour. Unplugging from social media can make a huge difference when it comes to getting work done. Put a timer on your phone so you can take short breaks without losing all of your study time. 

Lastly, be kind to yourself. Progress is not linear. You will struggle and fail along the way. A setback doesn’t mean you have to start over or give up. A setback gives you the opportunity to learn acceptance and keep moving forward.