How To Win The Battle Against Procrastination

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Procrastination is an issue that confronts millions of people every day. While it may not be affirmed to be in the lives of every student, it is certainly prevalent in the lives of many. Procrastination, like many things, has a cause-and-effect mechanism. Luckily, there are resources on and off-campus. Some of these resources are simply available, and others were made to specifically cater to students. Procrastination is an issue that has different resources to assist in overcoming it, and different methods on how to help students.

According to the University of Illinois Counseling Center (2018), some causes of procrastination can be due to lack of relevance, acceptance of another’s goals, perfectionism, evaluation anxiety, ambiguity, fear of the unknown, or the inability to handle the task. All of the traits, feelings, and circumstances listed above are completely acceptable reasons for being a procrastinator but do not negate the fact that being a procrastinator is a bad thing. While it can not hurt to relax a bit, anything in excess is not good. An example of this, given by TED (2016) says that everyone has a rational decision-maker in their head and also an instant gratification monkey, which gives way to unearned leisure.

Just like how causes exist for many things, if not everything, there will be effects that are bound to occur. The University of Illinois Counseling Center (2018) finds that ”If you ignore the test, it will go away… You underestimate the work involved in the task, or underestimate your abilities and resources in relation to the task… You deceive yourself into believing that a mediocre performance or lesser standards are acceptable,” are prime examples of procrastination across varying forms. As stated before, there are consequences for procrastination. A common one that students experience and meet due to this would be bad grades. Another consequence of procrastination could be lots of unnecessary stress, and less quality in the work put into whatever one does. Another statement TED (2016) has made said,” The air is filled with guilt, dread, anxiety, self-hatred, all those good procrastinator feelings.”

Thankfully, students have access to many resources on and off-campus, whether they know it or not! One of these various resources is counseling centers. Many college campuses house counseling centers for students to utilize; although, not all centers are cost-free. Also, a huge reason that there are counseling centers on campuses nowadays is because of the demand for them after World War II. Carl Rogers, the founder of client-centered therapy, founded one of the first counseling centers on a college campus the same year World War II concluded (The Editors of Encyclopaedia Britannica, 2019).

Even though counselors on campuses are prepared and ready to tackle whatever situation or circumstance is thrown towards them, sometimes it would be more effective for a student to search for a specialized therapist. A few examples of specialized therapy available would be music therapy, animal-assisted therapy, and sandplay therapy. While going off-campus and paying to visit a specialized therapist can be more beneficial in some ways, it is crucial to know that the connection the student and therapist feel is most important! Any therapist can toss in a little and play if they feel it would help, but if there is no connection established, then the growth and progress made would be considerably less.

Another resource made available to students would be the internet. Those of us familiar with the web are well-aware that there is a plethora of knowledge, and reading materials online over virtually any topic. Just like how there is material over telekinesis, flying pigs, and conspiracy theories, there is material over procrastination. This can be used to prevent oneself from procrastinating, help oneself cope with procrastinating habits, or help others against the uphill battle. The material provided can also be from a variety of sources who are ready to help. This could be organizations, companies, or a personal blog. At the same time, it is understood that not everybody enjoys reading. To the people who fall into that category, they are in luck! As previously established, the internet is not only a vast place but also a versatile place. It has applications to help students, or anybody in general, against procrastination. These applications can be used as a punishment system, which encourages the user to try harder, but can also be used as a more positive mechanism like blocking distracting sites. While that might be more practical for some, rather than reading material, there are support groups. In these support groups, like Give Us The Floor, people literally support each other and encourage one another to do the right thing.

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Despite there being all of these wonderful resources to help people cope and prevent, the best remedy may simply be human interaction, in moderation. To have a group of people who personally knows themselves support them would leave a huge mark on their life. This support could come in several forms, as friends do, and so it could be similar to how the internet applications function. There can be negative reinforcement, such as taking away one’s cell phone, not allowing one to go play with friends until an academic goal is reached, or who knows what. Through all of that, remember the positives! Friends can encourage one another by doing study groups together, verbal encouragement, or perhaps the snack initiative. An important aspect to remember about friendly encouragement is that friends are what one will act like, meaning that it is necessary to have friends that will leave a positive mark!

One last way that someone can help another person is to go into a mentor and mentee relationship, under the assumption that both parties are comfortable with it. Entering into a mentor-mentee relationship means for the mentee to learn from the mentor. This can be a trade, habits, lifestyles, life skills, and just a variety of concepts, sometimes depending on the social context. At Langston University, the McCabe Honors Program has a mentor-mentee program that allows for the freshman to connect with another student of the same major, just a different classification. This paves way for students to build bonds, gain advice from one another, and learn the ropes with more ease. Another example, also from Langston University, is the Young Women Empowerment Institute. Freshman women are given the opportunity to apply for this beneficial program and are paired with a mentor who guides them as much as they can.

Now that the details of just some of the available resources have been introduced, how they can be applied will follow. Pertaining to counseling centers, or clinics, some may be busier than others, but it is typically a simple process to get acquainted. Simply walk in, or call them, and ask to set up an appointment with a counselor. While the wait time may vary due to factors such as the demand of the student population, or availability of counselors, it should amount to be a beneficial session. Recall that the connection one makes with the counselor or therapist is crucial for maximum effect. For some students, this is the most favorable route because they need a trusted confidant who can help them calm down, and relieve the stresses of life. Not only that, but the counselor, or therapist, can give advice or perhaps a plan on how to get out of the deep hole known as procrastination.

When referencing the internet, keep in mind that it is the internet age. Almost everyone is capable of utilizing a computer, and if one just happens to not have the know-how, there is bound to be someone willing to help. Finding reading materials to aid in procrastination, is more simple than scheduling a counseling session. Simply type whatever it is into the search engine, and the results will speak for themselves. This method may work for other students because they might need time by themselves to give a solo pep talk. For some, the materials would give them the boost they need, but may also guide them to other resources. These resources could be applications that force one to study, else negative reinforcement will be enforced, or one that acts like a friend who secretly has one’s back by blocking leisure websites. Even though one may have to download the application to their computer, it would be worth it. One last resource to be mentioned on the web is online support groups. These groups encourage one another to do positive things that will benefit them in the moment, or in the long run. This can be an important asset to students because it is mobile and full of positive reinforcement.

People may be the best course of action for sociable people. It is best to remember that people leave impressions on themselves and to surround themselves with people who would leave a positive influence on them. Just like the support groups on the internet, people in the flesh can also have support groups. One form of this could be a study group, while another could be group therapy. Also, one can not forget about the mentor-mentee programs available, but keep in mind that this is possible even without an official program. For social people, these little human interactions might mean the world to them. Also, under the assumption that the people, or person, is somebody the student trusts, the effect of encouragement would be much greater!

In conclusion, these resources are home to many tidbits of knowledge that can help one with fighting against procrastination. I, myself, have made use of all of these resources in the past and present, with the exception of counseling and therapy from professionals. This was all to my advantage over the years. Despite doing all of the above, except professional counseling or therapy, I still procrastinate, as I am currently doing, and suggest that students also utilize all of the above to achieve the highest beneficiary rate of success.

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How To Win The Battle Against Procrastination. (2021, October 03). Edubirdie. Retrieved May 25, 2024, from
“How To Win The Battle Against Procrastination.” Edubirdie, 03 Oct. 2021,
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