Let’s just address the elephant in the room, shall we? This is already a tumultuous time in your life. So why put schoolwork and college application on hold until the last minute?
Procrastination is the definite road to being overly stressed and overwhelmed your senior year. Wouldn’t you rather enjoy your last year of high school before you and all of your friends go to different colleges and possibly move out of state?
We thought so.
While your senior year may be stressful, it should also be an exciting time in your life - your journey into adulthood has just begun! So it doesn’t do you good to exacerbate things by waiting until the 11th hour to get things done. It affects you far more than you think it will.
You’re more likely to make mistakes.
Whether it’s schoolwork, a college application, or any other project, there are rules and deadlines. It’s impossible to catch every single mistake when you’re working so fast. You’re focused more on getting it done versus getting it right so you can skip reading the directions and miss the mark completely. Not to mention, you probably don’t have much time to proofread or edit after you’ve completed the assignment.
You can’t enjoy the ride.
As we said before, this is an exciting time! If you’re worried about playing catch up to recover from procrastination, you won’t have time to enjoy the process.
You can’t predict the future.
Servers crash, cars break down, traffic comes to a grinding halt, mail gets picked up late (or not at all). A million things can go wrong that are beyond your control and impossible to predict. Deadlines aren’t guidelines, they are the rules; beware because you never know what obstacles may get in the way.
You may intensify negative feelings.
A bit of self-doubt is normal when you’re beginning the next chapter of your life, but procrastination can place those feelings under a magnifying glass. Anxiety has a way of making even the smallest obstacles seem impossible.
You take up more time when all things are said and done.
Think of a task in the past that you just kept putting off for one reason or another. How long did it take you to complete? Your first instinct is to count the hours it took you to complete the work so, at first glance, it seems like it only took you an hour or two. When we take a closer look at the time you spent pushing the task back, it’s much more accurate to say it took you a full week (or more) to complete an hour-long task.
So, what can you do about it?
Procrastination can happen to everyone. If you find yourself putting off deadlines, speak with your parents, guidance counselor, or a trusted teacher about your troubles so you can work together to create a realistic time optimization plan.
You can also assign an accountability buddy where you help each other stay on track no matter your obstacles. To get started, you and your accountability buddy must come up with an action plan to get you to your respective goals. When it comes time to check in, don’t just leave it up to chance. Each sub-task should have a hard deadline.