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Putting it Off

Emily Ramsey | Writer

College students know far too well the practice of “putting it off.” A college student’s worst fear. The weeks fly by, deadlines creep up and then, boom, finals week is upon us.  Tension is rising. Students scrambling, cramming. Trying to fit a semester’s workload into one day.  As the lines blur together, and the fatigue comes on strong, college students must push on. All for the stunning line of A’s in the gradebook, or conversely the embarrassment of failing.

I would be college students.  What I call “working well under pressure” is simply procrastination.  Every so often I am reminded of a TED Talk from 2016 that has stuck with me: Inside the mind of the master procrastinator.  Tim Urban tells the audience that the worst kind of procrastination isn’t the kind with deadlines, it's the kind without.

In my experience procrastination has always boiled down to avoidance.  Avoiding the insurmountable papers and presentations, negative feelings, and distress.  But no amount of avoiding makes the problems disappear. They are still there to greet you the next day.  You begin living life on autopilot, living only for the moment, but not in it.

When you’re staying up all night to avoid the next day, you aren’t truly living.  You’re just barely surviving.  Paralyzed by fear, as time passes by and you can do nothing to stop it.  

But I offer you a solution fellow procrastinators.  The road to living is long, but it starts by taking the wheel.


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