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The Procrastination Diaries

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Welcome to our special section, Thrive on Campus, devoted to covering the urgent issue of mental health among college and university students from all angles. If you are a college student, we invite you to apply to be an Editor-at-Large, or to simply contribute (please tag your pieces ThriveOnCampus). We welcome faculty, clinicians, and graduates to contribute as well. Read more here.

*Here’s looking into the mind of the millions of procrastinators there are today. Unfortunately based on the observation, recollection, modification and addition of umpteen real-life events and procrastinators.

Monday, 3:00 p.m.

People tell me that I have a bad habit of procrastinating, not a tendency, a bad habit. They look down on me like I’m some lazy, entitled brat who pushes all work aside till the last moment only to grumble and mumble about it. Excuse me? I don’t push aside all my work till the end, I’m hardworking! Plus, it’s not like I only have one task to a day right? Perhaps my task management skills need brushing up, but procrastination? They don’t know what they’re talking about!

Tuesday, 12:00 p.m.

I’ve had an epiphany! I really need to dedicate myself more to studies. It was probably after seeing all those students studying in the library while I watched 5 episodes of B99, but nevertheless, what am I doing? I’m smart, I’m talented, I’m hardworking when my mood permits, I can do so much better… Okay, from this moment onwards, I’ll focus more on my academics, let me begin by making a proper timetable for myself.

An hour and a half, a few bathroom breaks, four Youtube videos and countless colour and font changes later…

My Google calendar is packed! With all those tutorials, assignments, tests and group meetings, I won’t be having time to breathe. It’s good that I colour-coded all my tasks, differentiating won’t be hard now. Wow, all this brainstorming has made me hungry, I’ll grab some lunch and then begin making notes. It’s go time!

Tuesday, 9:00 p.m.

I can’t believe it’s already night! Time flies when you’re having fun, especially if it’s comedy night! Thank goodness I didn’t miss that just for note-taking… Which reminds me, I’ll set an alarm for 8:00 AM in order to accomplish today’s work tomorrow. Right now it’s time to relax, my stomach is still hurting from all that laughing!

Wednesday, 11:30 a.m., countless snoozes later

I really shouldn’t have stayed up late watching that movie. I still feel so drowsy! It’s 11:30 and I don’t have a class if I manage to get an extra half-hour of sleep I can finish all my work by night. Anyways, the great thinkers of the world have always said that the brain cannot function without proper sleep, I’ll respect their knowledge and apply it right now. Now, let me just reset my alarm…

And the rest was history

Friday, 6:00 p.m.

Here I’m, lost amongst the stacks and stacks of work which is surely going to kill me one day. What happened to the no procrastination rule?! However, since there is nobody who could possibly distract me right now, I suppose I can pull through the grind. Let’s see, I have to submit an essay by Monday evening, a test on the same day and another one on Wednesday. And of course, there are plenty of readings that I have to catch up on, and notes to make, and lectures to review, but I’ll tackle those later! Right, before I begin, I’ll just watch a motivational video to prepare myself.

7:30 p.m.

I knew it! Procrastinators are considered to be more creative and original with their work than others. That TedX talk opened my eyes to this tiny part of myself, I feel so proud right now! Let me post this on Facebook and prove all those judgemental people wrong. Watching YouTube videos actually saved my evening, and I’m prepped! It’s time to unleash my creativity and begin the essay. But wait! My desk is resembling a landfill, and there’s no point of working on my bed. I’ll clean it in a jiffy; tidy desk, tidy mind.

11:45 p.m., clean desk, spotless room, polished floors, a hot shower, and a blank Word document

I’ve heard people saying that tidying your possessions and room is a natural way to cleanse your mind and soul as well, I never thought it would be true! Come to think of it, my room did look like it needed some sprucing, hopefully, this will induce more creativity in my brain while writing that essay! Although I think I should turn in for the night, all that cleaning has drained me physically. I’ll get back to the essay tomorrow morning, bright and early!

Monday, 2:00 a.m., a completely unproductive weekend and 4 cups of coffee later… Sorry! Too busy thudding away on the keyboard and burning the midnight oil. Can’t ever stop procrastinating, can I?

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More on Mental Health on Campus:

What Campus Mental Health Centers Are Doing to Keep Up With Student Need

If You’re a Student Who’s Struggling With Mental Health, These 7 Tips Will Help

The Hidden Stress of RAs in the Student Mental Health Crisis

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