Don't put off till tomorrow what you can do later

Jake Tapley

The last couple weeks of every semester are the most vital. Students spend much of this time finishing up projects that they have been putting off or doing some cram-session studying.

It’s no secret that procrastination is typically thought of as a bad habit. But this doesn’t have to be the case.

In many situations, procrastination can end poorly. However, with the proper planning and time-management skills, I believe that it can be a perfectly healthy practice.

I have been a chronic procrastinator for quite some time now, and honestly, it works for me.

The key to procrastination is drawing a line. If you can’t draw a line in the sand that you won’t allow yourself to cross, there is no limit to how far you will end up putting something off.

In the short run, this can be detrimental to your grade. However, in the long run, this can sabotage your credibility as a student or potential employee.

So how do you toe the line between putting something off and putting something off “too long?”

I think it all comes back to perspective – how you frame the situation.

If you view it as “putting off the imminent feeling of having something due” instead of “putting off an assignment,” it becomes much easier to set the gears in motion when the time comes.

If you don’t frame it as such, it can become increasingly difficult to keep your footing on the task at hand.

The reason I say procrastination can be positive is that, for me, my concentration levels go way up when I’m working on deadline. I have a significant amount of trouble staying up late at night to finish a paper or project. I typically opt for going to bed and waking up early in the morning to get it done before classes.

Time and time again, this works for me.

I’m not saying this strategy will work for everyone, though. If you do your best work at midnight then, by all means, stay up. 

What’s important is that you figure out what works best for you. If you’re someone that gets stressed out by a burdensome workload then allocate the time you spend on it.

Don’t be afraid to put off some of the work if that’s what you need to do – just know your limits.