What is procrastination?
If you’re reading this, the chances are you already know about procrastination and are desperately searching for answer while your homework/assignments sit before you. Procrastination is the act of delaying or postponing a task or set of tasks. With the average person now spending over 4 hours a day staring at our mobile devices and even longer if you include YouTube/Netflix screen watch time. It is not surprising that over 20% of the world’s population admits to being a chronic procrastinator.
What can we do to prevent procrastination?
Analyse your work/study environment.
It is essential to keep your study environment clean and clutter-free. It will be much easier to focus in an organised environment than in a messy coffee-cup filled desk. Opening a window and lighting a candle or two will also help clear your head and focus at the task ahead.
Get out of bed.
Start your morning right by getting 6-8 hours sleep per night to wake up with sufficient energy and motivation to challenge the day. A good nutritious breakfast alongside a cup of tea/coffee and a glass of water will help keep you full and focused for a morning of productivity. It also a good habit not to bring your study/college work to bed with you as it disrupts your sleep schedule and distracts the brain from associating your bed with your work space.
Make a list.
Is there anything as satisfying and rewarding than a completed and crossed-off list? Perhaps, but it’s the simple and little things that may motivate you the most. By making and following a list, it helps see what needs to be done and making your work load more manageable.
Be aware of your deadlines.
Similar to a list, set a easy to follow timeline, with small and easily achievable daily goals. By setting small goals, the larger task at hand suddenly doesn’t appear as impossible as before, and slowly but surely you will be well on your way to completing your daunting assignments.
Study with a group.
If you truly struggle to find focus on your own, try studying in a library with a group of like-minded and motivated individuals. Ask your friends to hold onto your mobile to avoid unwanted distractions. Set reasonable study times with rewarding breaks. Be sure to drink plenty of water, eat a healthy meal and bring healthy snacks to keep you going throughout the day.
Put your phone away.
Thanks to the internet, email and social media, distraction and procrastination have become modern day diseases. If you cannot get away from your notification sound, perhaps it’s time you search internally on your app store for an app to help you. (Yes, there is literally apps to stop you from using your phone!)
3 anti-procrastination apps.
We often procrastinate when we don’t have a plan to complete a task or don’t know what we should be doing next. However, it’s easy to impose a structure with a good ‘to do’ list app like Todoist. Todist offers task tracking and task syncing across mobile and desktop devices. The Todoist app is for iOS, Android, Windows phone and the web. Other smart options include Any.do and Wunderlist.
Many of us procrastinate because the task facing us seems too daunting and we don’t know where to begin. The simple act of beginning the task is enough to defeat procrastination, especially if you split a large task into smaller, more manageable chunks and do the same with your time. With Tomato Timer, you set a timer and tackle your tasks in short, focused bursts to get more done. It’s a tactic based on the popular Pomodoro Technique.
Freedom (for Mac and Windows) reduces or eliminates distractions, making it easier for you to focus. We often procrastinate when we can slide easily from a task we don’t want to do to something that seems easier or more enjoyable. Freedom cuts off your access to the internet during the times you specify, blocking access to email, Facebook, Twitter and a multitude of time-sucking, focus-vaporising websites.