This is it. That huge paper is due tomorrow. The prep work is half done. Nothing is written yet. Panic sets in. Sweat breaks out. Tears may even begin to flow. But work must be done, and somehow that paper gets turned in. Then, it all starts over next week.
For many of us, procrastination becomes a way of life. We put off the things we need to be doing, substituting something— anything – else for the important task. When this applies to school work, the quality of the work can suffer, and so can our sanity. The fact of the matter is that procrastination is stressful. And I speak from experience.
Many people that are prone to procrastination are deadline driven. The looming due date spurs activity, and the paper gets written. It would make sense that setting other deadlines (before the actual due date) would solve the problem. However, it’s extremely easy to ignore a deadline that you create. If it were easy to get yourself to doing the work, procrastination wouldn’t be a problem in the first place. Here is where the Writing Center enters the picture.
The Writing Center offers students the opportunity to set themselves a deadline that requires being accountable to other people. If you make an appointment, you have a deadline to work towards (that can be set at your convenience), and you have a tutor waiting to meet with you. For many people, it’s much easier to stick to something if other people are involved. Writing Center appointments provide the benefit of a deadline, accountability, and maybe even a helpful, thought-provoking perspective all in one place!
The next time you get the urge to put off that big (or small) paper, consider coming to see us here at the Center. Procrastination can be a hard habit to break, but learning to work ahead is a worthy goal to aim for. Making an appointment can be one small step towards that goal. You might be surprised by how good it feels to start in advance.