Procrastination: A college student’s best friend
by Jared Armstrong
What were you doing before reading this blog? Scrolling through Instagram? Watching TikTok? Putting off your homework? All of the above? “According to the American Psychological Association (APA), anywhere from ‘80 percent to 95 percent of college students procrastinate, particularly when it comes to doing their coursework’” (National University, 2021, p. 1). Based on this percentage, nearly all college students procrastinate in some way. I am personally guilty of procrastinating and waiting until the last minute to get my assignments turned in. However, there are many different ways to overcome procrastination which will allow you to get the most out of each and every day.
For starters, the biggest distraction is that smart phone you are either using to read this blog or have sitting right next to you. Put the phone somewhere you can no longer see it and you will immediately see an increase in your productivity. In addition, before moving your phone, set a timer for 25 minutes so that way you have a time limit for your work. Once the timer goes off, set another one for a quick five-minute break. You can now repeat this exercise for however long you plan to do your work.
If you think I’m crazy, this technique is actually known as the Pomodoro Technique which was developed by entrepreneur Francesco Cirillo when he was a college student. In essence, “the Pomodoro Technique essentially trains people to focus on tasks better by limiting the length of time they attempt to maintain that focus and ensuring restorative breaks from the effort. The method also helps them overcome their tendencies to procrastinate or multitask, both of which are known to impair productivity” (Sheldon and Wigmore, 2022, p. 1). If you want to get rid of your procrastination habits, the Pomodoro Technique is a great place to start.
Furthermore, there are other simple methods for you to prevent procrastination. Rather than numbing your brain with TikTok’s or social media, go outside, take a walk, get some exercise. Everything I just mentioned is widely known to improve your mood and limit your distractions. These activities will also make your mind more refreshed and ready to work. Make sure you take time every day to just take a breath and relax so that way you can see an immediate increase in your productivity.
If you struggle with procrastination, you are not alone. I have heard this phrase a lot during my college career, and it really does hold true: “The problem college students face is not a lack of time, rather it is having too much time on their hands.” Instead of wasting valuable time, make a daily schedule for yourself that includes everything you want and need to accomplish based on the time you have. Put your phone away, start doing the Pomodoro Technique and set aside time for relaxation and things that will boost your overall well-being.
So now what? Are you going to sit on your phone some more or are you going to get the most out of your day so you can have more time for fun? To procrastinate or not to procrastinate, that is the question.
National University. (2021, July 6). Helping Students Overcome Procrastination. National University. Retrieved February 23, 2023, from https://www.nu.edu/blog/helping-students-overcome-procrastination/#:~:text=According%20to%20the%20American%20Psychological,of%20every%20five%20students%20in
Sheldon, R., & Wigmore, I. (2022, September 15). What is Pomodoro Technique Time Management? WhatIs.com. Retrieved February 23, 2023, from https://www.techtarget.com/whatis/definition/pomodoro-technique#:~:text=What%20is%20the%20Pomodoro%20Technique,broken%20by%20five%2Dminute%20breaks
Do you have a compelling story or student success tips you’d like to see published on the Pearson Students blog? If you are a college student and interested in writing for us – click here to pitch your idea and get started!