How to Procrastinate and Still Get Everything Done

Опубликовал Admin
24-09-2016, 11:10
The human race loves procrastinating. Though people view procrastinating as inefficient use of time, effective procrastination actually takes complex time management skills and can keep you from spending too much time on activities that don't add very much to your quality of life.


  1. Make a list. Think about what you have to do. Make a To Do list on your computer so you can see everything, rearrange items, put items into categories, and delete them when they're finished. With a written list, you won't forget anything (even if you don't ever actually do it all). Or you can make a mental list, but then you'll drive yourself crazy trying to remember everything in your head.
  2. Prioritize based on the date that by which each item must be completed. First priority goes to things that are a few hours away (e.g., a paper due at 8 am), last priority to things that are a week away. Factor in the amount of time necessary for each task (reading War and Peace vs. writing a 200-word reflection on your eating habits).
  3. If you don't have anything due in the next few hours, go have some fun. Recommended: surfing the internet, playing video games, doing art, dancing, going on adventures, television, cooking a gourmet meal, etc.
  4. If you do have something due in the next few hours, fear not. Simply get started ... sort of. If you have a paper to write, open up a word processing document and type your name and the date in the header and maybe the first line. An outline would be a good place to start if you're that type of person.
  5. Start something else. Open up a window of your favorite browser and start surfing. Great places: wikis, travel sites about secluded nations (e.g., Mongolia), blog sites, etc. If you're less internet inclined, T.V., music, video games, etc., are good things.
  6. Travel back and forth between the "productive" and the "fun". Get work done bit by bit instead of focusing exclusively on the required item. When you realize that you only have an hour or two left, buckle down a bit more and get more work done.
  7. At the last minute, finish up whatever you're supposed to be doing and finalize it (print it, clean it up, etc.).
  8. Turn it in! Show it off! ... Whatever it is!
  9. Take a brief nap because you probably didn't get any sleep. Set several alarms at 5-minute intervals and get up after about 2 of them have gone off. Make sure you actually get up, though.
  10. Repeat steps 4-9 as necessary.
  11. Go back to some fun stuff for a little while ... reanalyze your To Do list while you're at it.


  • Sleep on weekends.
  • Feel free to delete things from your To Do list if you know you're not going to do them or the time has passed.
  • Be ready to buckle down and do it all at the extreme last minute.
  • Multitask: eat meals while doing fun things and gradually getting work done.
  • When you finish something on your To Do list, just before you delete that item, reward yourself by whooping and hollering and generally celebrating what a productive person you are!
  • Condition yourself to being used to getting little sleep. Sleeping in blocks of 90 minutes seems to be fairly efficient.
  • Allow yourself to do fun things to distract yourself so that you're less stressed out about the whole ordeal for a while.
  • Start things ahead of time a little by, say, reading 20 pages of War and Peace ... that way you can say you started it early and you'll be proud of yourself and give more credence to your arguments for your work.
  • If you're in college, talk to your professors or Teaching Assistant. That will help them recognize you and they'll believe that you care more about your work.


  • Don't lose too much sleep. Lack of sleep can impair your ability to do many things, for example, drive a car, hold a decent conversation, think logically, and even use a pencil. It also hurts your immune system.
  • Be careful with caffeine. Don't become too dependent, and make sure you don't overdose, because that could put a hamper in your procrastination.
  • Not everything that is urgent is important. Maybe you have a coupon for $2 off a case of soda at the grocery store, but it expires tomorrow (urgent). Don't take valuable time away from things that are more important just because something relatively unimportant has a deadline. You can just decide that the urgent-but-not-important item isn't worth doing after all. Or you can make the unimportant-but-fun thing a break in the drudgery.
  • Sleeping primarily on the weekends will kill your social life.
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