This post is like a worse case scenario on the pitfalls of procrastination. It was created on the spur of the moment as an escape from studying during my undergraduate years. When the Muse appears, sometimes you can’t help but surrender to her. Some ideas –no, most ideas appear when you don’t expect them to.
My eyes squinted hard over the archaic symbols. Sweat ran over my brow, down my lashes and dripped down to the paper smudging the writing. My heart was pounding so loudly –sounding like church bells ringing on a Sunday afternoon. My head throbbed painfully as I tried to decipher the clues. I tore my hair in despair and threw my pen down as terrible despair passed through me. I felt as if I could crack down any minute and my very sanity breaking down. The answer was out there. I knew it but I just couldn’t find it. It slithers away from my grasp like a slippery fish slipping through the net.
This could only mean one thing.
It’s finals week.
Given that I have a low threshold of concentration this is bad when I’m studying math.
Especially when I’m studying math.
Has it already been proven that staring at numbers too much could prove hazardous to your health? Then that would explain why they began to get blurry before my eyes and I wound up banging my head against the book shouting, “I don’t wanna repeat statistics! I don’t wanna repeat statistics!”
You see, I was hoping this would motivate me.
I looked at my right and cringed at this mound of books the size of Mount Everest beside me.
Six chapters of Biology. Four in Anthropology. Ten in Economics and a paper on postmodernism.
And I was going to do them all in one night.
It was five minutes before midnight.
I can do this.
But instead of devoting time to my work, I found myself pouring my angst out about my cram fest. This took up a lot of precious minutes that would have been used for studying yet I felt so liberated just scribbling everything away. It also made me realize something.
I really don’t like studying.
Before I knew it I was in the throes of a mad frenzy and I was gripped and sucked into a wild whirlpool of words. I couldn’t seem to stop.
Here therefore is the fruit of my temporary lapse from my academic duty.
The Nine Habits for Highly Effective Procrastinating People: What to Do for Finals Week
Procrastination is a skill and a habit one must invest time in order to make it stick. It isn’t easily acquired for those who are staunchly devoted to their to-do list. First of all, it needs a wandering mind and a weak will —something I believe that most people have that thousands of years of evolution couldn’t change.
It is an excellent activity when you don’t want to get your work done. It’s so effective that a highly trained person in this field is capable of not finishing a single sheet of homework even if he has been given a month.
There’s no other place it can flourish than in the field of academics.
Here’s some top notch tips for you to practice on for examination week. Even if given 200 hours for sloughing the books one can easily waste all this time if one knows how to do it.
Let’s say you’re given a week to plough through the papers. Then let’s waste it all on fun good time.
1. Enjoy your youth. Go bar hopping. Have a beer drinking fest.
2. Always tell yourself, “There’s always tomorrow.” And if it’s the actual test day…. …. say, “I still have one minute left.”
3. Stare at the clock and pretend you’re being hypnotized. Be completely mesmerized with it’s ticking hands. Do this for the whole week and report to me if you’re turned into Rip Van Winkle. I’ll be your agent.
5. Call someone and talk the hours away.
6. Surf the net.
7. Fantasize about that one special person —how you’ll meet again and what witty things you plan on saying.
8. Whenever something good is on, watch it. An example: I was studying history when I looked out of the window and saw two crazy guys naked cavorting about. My eyes widened.
9. Follow your impulses. If the bed needs fixing, fix it. If you want to watch a movie, watch it. Forget studying, it’s boring. And if you want to procreate, go for it (bring me along with you. We’ll work something out.).
Just follow these tips and I guarantee your workload will rival that of the planet Jupiter in size. Oh yeah, your grades will get bad too.
I glanced at my watch and started.
Holy (expletive deleted)!!!! It was past two a.m. I looked down guiltily at my textbooks. There was still so much to be done. But minute by minute my eyes were beginning to feel like they were pulled down by metal pliers.
I thought to myself, “I’ll just wake up early and then catch up.” My class was still at 9:30 a.m. I set my alarm and immediately drifted away. When I woke up I realized my traitorous alarm had broken down and it was 8:50 in the morning.
@#$%!!! (due to extreme expletives this entire section has been deleted for your discretion)
A paper I hadn’t even started and four major exams I haven’t studied for. There was a rising panic in my chest. I didn’t know how I could survive this ordeal. It looked like the only thing I’m capable of writing in the answer sheet is my name.
As I tried to get ready in an inhuman pace, I prayed that if there was one wish God would grant me it would be to take Marie Antoinette’s place at the guillotine.