Procrastination is something everyone struggles with. Even as much as some people like to boast about their ability to sit down and get their work done on time, every time, chances are there’s been a few times in their lives when they thought that a 90210 marathon sounded a lot better than doing their work! It’s okay to procrastinate sometimes, but it can become a real problem when you find yourself doing it every day, and it starts affecting the quality of your work. If you’ve been finding yourself putting off your homework a little more every day and you’ve been staying up later and later trying to get everything done, it may be time to address your procrastination issues. Here are some tips to help you keep your nose to the grindstone and beat procrastination!
A lot of times, when you get home from school, the thought of starting your homework right away seems ridiculous. After a long day of working, you want a break. You grab a snack, watch TV, and little by little the hours fly by until all of a sudden its 8pm and you haven’t hit the books yet. If that sounds like the story of your life, you should stay at school and do all your homework before going home. Or, you can go to your local library. Anywhere that keeps you off the couch until the time for relaxation has come! Sometimes, just changing the setting where you study is enough to make all the difference in the world.
Before going home for the day, make sure you have all the folders and textbooks you need to do your homework. Keep anything you don’t need in your locker (just make sure you double-check and make sure you won’t be needing it!). A lot of the time we use “getting organized” as a distraction so that we don’t have to settle down and actually start working: if you’ve ever thought to yourself “I’ll just organize all my notes in chronological order, then get started”, then wound up two hours later with a really pretty binder but no work done, you know how much time a person can spend “getting organized”! So do your organizational work at school, before you go home, so you don’t have an excuse to put off starting your homework.
Turn off the TV, the computer, and the smartphone. Technology is a huge distraction. It’s easy to say “let me just check Facebook really quick”, then lose yourself in statuses and pictures for a half hour. So remove anything that distracts you. When possible, hand-write your assignments instead of typing them, because being near a computer might be too much temptation to do anything but your homework.
This might seem counter-intuitive, but you really do need to take a break when you’re working. It will recharge you and make it much easier to get all that work done if you stop halfway through to get a snack and let your brain relax for a little while.
Borrow your mom’s kitchen timer, or set a timer on your watch or phone to go off every 15 or 30 minutes. Every time it goes off, look at the work you’ve accomplished. It’s a great motivator to see how much you can get done when you really buckle down. And, if you have been working for 30 minutes and see when the timer goes off that you’ve only read two pages, you’ll know that something’s up and you can think about where you went wrong, or what is slowing you down.