With the semester taking a swing at assignments and midterm season approaching us, we all have a lot to do. I always end up procrastinating on academic tasks because anxiety takes over me and I avoid the tasks at hand. So, I tried solving this problem of mine by pointing out exactly why I don’t like doing tasks.
I know that completing my assignments and studying isn’t as hard as I think it is because once I start doing it, I genuinely enjoy it. These assignments and studying end up done in a matter of time. However, taking the first step is always the problem for me. So I started looking at strategies to deal with procrastination all over the internet. I ending up finding a quiz that helps you determine why you put aside certain tasks. It also reviewed things can you do to stop procrastinating.
I took the quiz and I realized that I lacked self motivation, got really anxious, and allotted too much time for tasks. Through the quiz, I decided to keep my schedule busy enough but to also make studying fun (such as creating a schedule with a friend or organizing a study date). One of the key pieces I learned about procrastination was also the importance of breaks. Taking a break can help refocus my energy, maintain motivation, and reduce anxiety when things feel too much.
I also came across the website Focusmate. Focusmate is a virtual model to help reduce distractions while connecting you with people who also have tasks to complete. In essence, I was virtually studying with someone and we were holding each other accountable to finish our own respective work. We worked in silence and it felt like I was in a very study-focused space. I ended up getting my work done a lot faster.
Another application that I found very useful is the app Forest. This application is a life-saver to anyone who tends to get easily distracted by their phones. It places a temporary lock on your applications while you study and in return, you collect points that start to add up. As your points add up, they equate to someone planting a tree on behalf of your productivity! It is an amazing feeling to make it through your study session and see a visual representation of your work.
If you are looking for opportunities on campus to curb procrastination, UofT provides a number of programs to support getting work done. Study Hubs help students create achievable goals and then allows students time within the group to reach those goals. If you are registered with Accessibility Services, there are small Group Learning Strategy Sessions that focus on building motivation and progress.
Both the tools available online and through UofT can help provide strategies to recognize and curb our procrastination.